Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Life after Marc Fleury
Like the cheesy Cher classic, "life after love", this TSS thread featuring former employee Shaun Connolly, wanna-be rival Cameron Purdy and your occasional TSS smart ass (Douglas Dooley and no it is not me astroturfing) is just begging to be sampled.
How gratifying it is to see former employees spread their wings and release their inner aparatchik. In this interview, Shaun Connolly appears to achieve therapeutic release and Fleury exorcism by telling a random, unsuspecting journalist how good it is since I've been gone. It is nice to have one's contributions reduced from "founder and CEO" to "provided great sound bites".
This is followed by money quotes from a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed Cameron Purdy who is still pinching himself at his good fortune at having unloaded his piece of shit company on an unsuspecting Oracle. First he talks about "how great life is working with all them geniuses over at Oracle" and how they are soo "in luuuuvvve".
Reflecting on "luuuuvvve" I can remember the feeling well. I was 17, it was a spring break ski trip. I was enthusiastic. She was cute, chesty, and easy. The feeling lasted all of three days until she moved on ... to my best friend.
Back to the topic at hand. Son, you have been there eight weeks. Come back to us several months down the road.
More seriously, he speculates that I missed my chance for M&A bliss at Oracle. Cameron, I know you are under the influence of luuuve and all, but here you are over-reaching a bit. Your product is not a threat for existing insiders at Oracle. Your proprietary technology complements their middleware by replacing Bela's Jgroups. Our Open Source technology and model competed with entreched players. Think about it.
Picture this: you are sitting across the table from the division head and the billionaire looking to acquire you, and you realize the division head is falling asleep. He has a thin thread of drool at the corner of his mouth and a Cheshire cat grin on his face. And then you reach that zen point. You realize he is not smiling because he likes you. He is falling asleep because the meeting has no meaning for him. He is grinning because he knows he can fuck you up at any moment during the integration. And he wants you to know that he knows.
And then I wonder, maybe Cameron is on to something. Could it be that all the ballsy visionaries are in one place and all the pontificating windbags are in another? Is it possible that Cameron is very happy at Oracle, just as it is apparent that Shaun is happier at Red Hat and I am only happy when I call the shots?
It reminds me of the week in 1999 I decided to leave Sun for a consulting job that paid three times my meager SE salary. In a last ditch effort to keep me on board my former boss implored "Be good to Raj and Raj will be good to you." I thought about it for one second, Raj, my director, had been good to me, I liked him. However, I wasn't about to bet the future on Raj's gratitude.
I decided then and there that "me would be good to me", it followed naturally that "if me was gonna be good to me then me would be good back to me". It was a tautology not a statement of faith.
Some people fit in; some don't.