Day 1 of Silicon Valley’s 3 week shelter in place order due to the novel coronavirus known as CoVid-19 or the Wuhan Flu. The unprecedented Silicon Valley Lock Down is underway. Supposedly it will be for 3 weeks from midnight March 17 through April 7th. But what magical things will happen on April 8th no one seems to know. Originally the order included 6 Bay Area counties but now also includes Sonoma County.
It is quiet here. Eerily quiet. Quieter than any holiday weekend I’ve ever experienced here. You can hear individual cars driving down the 101, which is usually a steady stream of river like white noise. Restaurants that were already on the brink of bankruptcy due to the Bay Area’s rising costs, new labor laws, and Grub Hub take out orders which cut into many restaurants highest margin money maker, mixed drinks will not survive the Wuhan Virus restaurant apocalypse. Try to support you local restaurants by ordering some take out orders during the shelter in place lock down. You might literally be sitting on a pile of beans, but do your really want to eat dried beans? Do you even know what to do with dried beans?
Napa County is still the only Bay Area county with no confirmed cases. But of course more testing is likely to show that more cases abound in the Bay Area. Many people will have no noticeable symptoms but may carry the virus to other more vulnerable victims. Which is why “Social Distance” is a thing now. Social Distance used to be reserved for players of “World of Warcraft” but now everyone is practicing it to “flatten the curve” and try to limit the spread of the novel corona virus so that hospitals aren’t overwhelmed with patients all at once.
Santa Clara County in the heart of Silicon Valley now has the most cases of any county in California.
Hospitals are seeing protective equipment meant to be used by medical personnel like wall-mounted hand sanitizer stations, masks and gowns disappearing. Pilfered by scared people that think these protective items will not be able to be found anywhere else. Calm down people!
People that went to Costco to pick up a few items saw the panicked buyers stuffing their giant carts with everything they could grab, canned beans, dried beans, toilet paper, Nutri-Grain bars, followed the human trait of mimicking fellow humans, and joined in the panic shopping frenzy. Like some apocalyptic black Friday. The ensuing panic left many store shelves in the Bay Area and Silicon Valley looking like this:
Please don’t dial 911 because you ran out of toilet paper. 911 is not room service. And please don’t call 911 if you hear your neighbor coughing. They’re probably just choking on some improperly cooked dried beans.
Well it is now the year 2020 and the only flying cars we have are Teslas on Autopilot careening into barriers on the freeway.
Sometimes Teslas follow seams in the concrete instead of the actual painted lines on the road, causing the Tesla on autopilot to veer into barriers at the edges of the freeway. That’s why drivers of these semi autonomous machines need to stay awake with their hands on the wheel. Because real self driving cars are not here yet. Not until that comet from Maximum Overdrive swings by Earth again.
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Festivus and Happy Kwanza or whatever holiday you celebrate or don’t celebrate. The tech world is here for you. Ready to monetize, I mean make the world a better place with your data.
Enjoy the low volume traffic on Bay Area roads and the quiet streets of the valley. They won’t be that way for long.
Shake Shack San Mateo fails at making a Shake! The word “Shake” is the first part of their name, Shake Shack! You’d think they would have at least the process of making of a shake down solid. But nope. Not yet. At least not at this location.
Shake Shack’s newest Bay Area location opened recently in the modern new addition of the Hillsdale Mall known as the North Block.
We have visited Shake Shack locations in London, New York and the Washington DC area, and while the locations have been busy and over hyped, the food was at least tasty and matched what we had ordered and paid for.
Here’s how we experienced the complete failure of Shake Shack’s signature shake on a recent visit. After having a great dinner at the fairly new Japanese Teishoku restaurant, YAYOI, also at the Hillsdale Mall we decided to give Shake Shack a try for a holiday dessert.
We waited in the line for shake orders as the automated kiosk was for meal orders. Some locations we’ve been to had separate lines just for drink orders but it depends on the location. The line moved along and we ordered the Coffee Fair Shake along with the seasonal “Pie Oh My” Concrete with blended pumpkin pie. For those not familiar with Shake Shack’s frozen offerings, the Concrete is kind of a mixed up mash of frozen custard and toppings.
After a looong wait our order was finally called, the buzzer we were given never actually buzzed. We picked up the Coffee Fair Shake and the Pumpkin Pie Concrete and moved out of the crowded order wait area. But something didn’t look right, the “coffee shake” was way too light colored to have any amount of coffee in it and the “Concrete” looked more like soup than anything remotely like concrete.
This wasn’t a hot day, it was in the high 40’s outside and this location was getting plenty of cold air blowing in through the constantly opening doors. So how were these frozen treats left all soupy and gross and presented to the customer like that?
After trying the “coffee” shake it was obviously not the coffee shake we ordered so we took it back to the counter and were presented with a new shake that looked exactly the same except for a “Malted” sticker on the top. “This one is coffee”, stated the counter worker. Somewhat reassured that we got the right one, we ventured outside of the crowded area and sat down to enjoy the new North Block outdoor area with fire pits and a large lit Christmas tree. We were trying to place the flavor of the shake, definitely not coffee, maybe it was caramel and vanilla? It was hard to place given that the shake along with the concrete were given to us in a melted state that just tasted like sugary syrup. Cracking the lid off the melted concrete revealed nothing pumpkin related, just some chocolate chunks swimming in a murky sea of some sort of melted sugary concoction. Maybe these were made earlier in the day and just kept under a warming lamp until some unsuspecting customer ordered one?
After a lot of wasted time and a total of $11.48 with the $1.00 tax spent on foul tasting liquid mush, we dumped the remains of the not so frozen treats in the trash and left with the taste of disappointment lingering in our mouths. Disappointment apparently is the new flavor of the “Golden State” and the Bay Area. High costs, long waits, heavy traffic, dirty, crumbling streets and a direction that does not seem like anything resembling forward.
Hillsdale Shopping Center is located at 60 31st Ave, San Mateo south of the downtown area and has plenty of other food options that might not disappoint.
Though, if you want a real shake, skip the “shack” and head to Jack’s Prime just south of the Hillsdale Mall on El Camino Real. I recommend the coffee shake with Oreos.
Shake Shack melted my faith in the simplicity of the Shake.
Happy Halloween Silicon Valley! The Kincade fire smoke has mostly cleared from the Bay Area but it’s still a spare the air day. Just don’t spare the candy!
The dangers of the high wind event have passed and the fire fighters were much more prepared this time with prepositioned fire crews
Remember when Think Geek used to have cool stuff for Halloween? Like these free t-shirts that were a different theme every year?
Here’s the Horror Movie Monsters themed shirt design with Timmy the ThinkGeek monkey fending them off with a cricket bat, just like Shaun of the Dead. Now ThinkGeek is a ghost of a company absorbed by Game Stop. The actual domain thinkgeek.com just reroutes to Gamestop with a few pictures of Think Geek era merchandise.
The Disney Wonder cruise ship, after a two week drydock in Victoria Canada, will arrive at this San Diego pier in a matter of hours. The #DisneyWonder will be sporting new features and upgrades that keep the small but growing Disney Cruise Line fleet fresh, efficient and safe.
The Disney Wonder is set to sail on a 5 night Halloween on the High Seas cruise to Baja Mexico.
Are you ready to join Mickey’s Fang Club?
Stay tuned for updates on the new changes to the Disney Wonder since drydock!
Well, the venerable rock station KFOG is officially dead, even the call letters are retired. As over the air broadcast radio becomes an increasingly desolate landscape with the transition to web based entertainment, we are forced to turn to the web as well.
Enjoy tonight’s micro moon, which is also the harvest moon. The next time a full moon will fall on a Friday the 13th will be 30 years from now.
For me this Friday the 13th was a workday. Had to wrap up some work that wasn’t very Silicon Valley like. It wasn’t Agile, or DevOps-y, or Machine Learning or even anything important at all by tech standards. But it was part of a contract deliverable to a customer so such is life. These things are sometimes unavoidable in the tech biz driven life. Maybe I’d rather just be sipping an ale and eating chicken vindaloo while watching old reruns of Red Dwarf. But the skutters won’t have it. They would have me transferred to an unimportant hollogram in an instant.