Google – great food, lousy coffee

A mate of mine who works as an aircraft engineer at Auckland airport tells me there was a privately-owned 767-200 parked there recently, by all accounts owned by Google founders Larry Page and Sergei Brin.

A lot of people – especially in the country that practically invented tall poppy syndrome – would heap scorn on such extravagance, arguing that they could save the planet (yeah right!) and countless starving children by flying coach and giving the savings to charity. Me, I think that without such impressive displays of what can be achieved through hard work and natural ability (ingenio et labore!), your average drone would be even more useless than they are now. Yet another reason why I can’t stand lefties – to really excell people need incentives beyond forced or fake altruism. If you don’t like Sergei and Larry living the way they do, build a better search engine and reinvent the advertising industry. I’m sure you’ll find it harder to decry such opulence when it’s your own.

Anyhoo, I like Google and find many of their products to be indespensible, personally and professionally. I even took a couple of days out of the office last month to get certified as a Google Advertising Professional. I enjoyed the training, aced the exam, and even went so far as to drink the instructors under the table at the drinkies that followed (education is, after all, a lifelong commitment). As I nursed my aching head the following morning I could quite honestly tell you that Google is a company that does nothing by halves.

And then today I get this tacky piece of crap in the mail…

Yup, that’s class. One hundred percent. Think I’ll hang it in the den, next to my Master’s degree.

One thing I learned during my near-decade in the hospitality industry is the importance of coffee. It’s the last thing your guests are served before they leave your establishment, so it’d better be good if you want them to return. Trust me on this – great coffee after a lousy meal can win back a disappointed customer, and the opposite is also true.

Rather than reminding me of what I achieved and the great experience I had with the trainers, this tacky piece of home-made laminated crap just makes me cringe. Am I being melodramatic? Possibly. Am I overreacting? I think not, and here’s why.

I was personally invited to attend the Google training. I received personal emails from our account manager confirming my place and reminding me of dates and locations. I was greeted and called on by name during the training, and entertained afterward as though by friends. My experience with Google was very much a personal, enjoyable one – hardly what you would expect from one of the world’s largest tech companies. And then they remind me that I’m just a number, one of countless thousands they engage with on a similar level every single day.

I don’t want to appear ungrateful. The training cost me nothing and was very rewarding. I still have the utmost respect for Google, and admire the Googlers I’ve had dealings with. I just couldn’t let this slide. If anyone from Google reads this, I’d like to suggest you either get the certificates done properly or do away with them altogether. This half-assed stuff really is beneath you. To everyone else, let this be a reminder…

No matter what industry you’re working in, never underestimate the importance of serving great coffee


6 Responses to “Google – great food, lousy coffee”

  1. 1 Simonne January 5, 2009 at 8:41 pm

    C’mon … it’s none so bad really … a nice frame would perk that certificate *right* up.

  2. 2 kali January 6, 2009 at 3:35 am

    OMG, what a cheap looking certificate.

    P.S. you sound like a bitter old guy and your comments about “lefties” is hilarious. it makes you sound like a self-centered, narrow-minded, typical “rightie”. thanks for confirming it to the world.

  3. 3 dave January 6, 2009 at 4:54 am

    i afree with kali i reckon you r a tightarse rightwing national suporter and u probably have a small d**k as well. All money should be taxed and given to poor people and bums who sit on their arses complaining on other peoples’ blogs, not the greedy investors and entrepreneurs! What have they ever done to deserve anythign? I mean sure, they invest their effort (and savings) in the economy and create jobs, but have they ever been to a protest? Did they vote labour? YOu can bet they didn’t, because they’re all greedy corpoare fatcats.

    You’re probably so old you have grey pubes. Me I shave mine, it was startign to look like a brillo pad in my pants.

  4. 4 Stuart Parker January 6, 2009 at 7:35 am

    @dave. If you want to know about the colour of my pubes, suggest you ask Kali’s mother. I was #74 in her world record gang bang attempt a couple of years back**, although she may have trouble remembering – IIRC she was also fellating a goat at the time.

    **At least, she claimed it was a world record attempt. Turns out she was just doing her regular Friday night thing

  5. 5 Jeff January 6, 2009 at 8:40 am

    You are a fat idiot and you don’t know what you are talking about!

  6. 6 Stuart Parker January 6, 2009 at 9:07 am

    Hi Jeff,

    According to your IP address (, you currently work at Google. Good luck with that.


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