September 16th, 2013
With apologies to Quentin Tarantino.
At a table inside the Coupa Cafe, a coffee shop in Palo Alto, California. VINCENT and JULES are eating breakfasts of eggs/sausage/pancakes and a muffin, respectively, and drinking coffee. They are talking about entrepreneurship. JULES Yeah, I've just been sitting here thinking. VINCENT About what? JULES About the startup I've got cooking. VINCENT Startup in your mind. I think you don't have anything more than a weekend hack. Maybe a web app at best. JULES What is a startup, Vincent? VINCENT A company that's just getting going. JULES And what kind of company would qualify? Vincent takes a sip of coffee VINCENT It's... a company that has aspirations of growth, of making money, of changing things for the better. Jules points at Vincent to indicate that he's hit on the main idea. Vincent pauses, and then continues. VINCENT But your little side project, I don't think it qualifies. Jules CHUCKLES. JULES: Hey Vincent, can't you see that shit don't matter? You're judging this shit the wrong way. I mean, it could be that my company will hit it big, or that Snapchat won't just be a fad, or that some 16-year-old will flip a stupid vampire social network to some dumb 18-year-old wannabe hedge fund manager. You don't judge shit like this based on merit. Now whether or not what I'm doing is an according-to-Graham "startup" is insignificant. But what is significant is that I feel it in here. Jules points to his heart. JULES: I know that what I'm doing is a startup. Call it what you want, but it's a startup to me. VINCENT But why? JULES Well, that's what's fucking with me. I don't know why. But I know it's what I'm meant to do. Vincent SCOFFS. VINCENT You're serious? You're really thinking about quitting? JULES Software consulting? VINCENT Yeah. JULES Most definitely. VINCENT Fuck. You're making such great money! Vincent SIGHS. VINCENT So what are you going to do then? JULES Well, first I'm going to deliver the remaining code to my client. Then, basically I'm just going to do the startup thing. VINCENT What do you mean, "do the startup thing?" JULES You know, like Zuckerberg and Facebook. Raise money, write code, change the world. VINCENT And how long do you intend to "raise money and write code"? JULES Until my startup takes off and I have a successful exit. VINCENT And what if you never have an exit? JULES We're in a bubble. Somebody will buy it. VINCENT So you decided to be an asshole. JULES I'll just be Jules, Vincent. That, and I'll be incredibly rich eventually. VINCENT No Jules, you decided to be an asshole. Just like all of those pieces of shit writing pretentious blog posts and going on about social-this or mobile-that. Who pretend their MBAs qualify them for eight-figure VC investments, or who treat content farming like it's adding utility to the web. They have a name for that, Jules: an asshole. And without a revenue plan or a product that will scale that's all you're going to be at your so-called "startup": a fucking asshole. JULES Look, my friend, this is just where you and I differ. VINCENT Jules, what happened over the past few days, I agree, some angels showed some interest and your stub of a signup page collected a few email addresses, but an actual startup? I don't think... JULES Any idea as long as it can get traction, Vincent. VINCENT Don't fucking talk that way to me, man. How will you make money? JULES If my answers frighten you, then you should cease asking scary questions. VINCENT Let me ask you something; when did you make this decision? JULES Just recently. I was sitting at home, reading about how Twitter was about to IPO, and how Uber picked up $250 million from Google, and I had what techies refer to as, "a moment of jealousy." VINCENT Fuck.