January 23, 2013

Millionaires Caught Riding Subways: Sergey Brin Edition

On Monday, blogs and news sites the world over flipped their collective lids over a picture of a thin, geeky looking man wearing glasses and riding on a subway.

The story seems a little too convenient to be coincidental.

Noah Zerkin, a blogger who writes about Augmented Reality snapped the picture and posted it on Twitter with the caption: “yeeeeah…(sic) I just had a brief conversation with the most powerful man in the world. On the downtown 3 train. Nice guy.”

The man in question is Google Co-Founder Sergey Brin.

(Also, tone it down some, Noah. Sergey doesn’t follow you and isn’t going to search Twitter to see if his name pops up. “Most Powerful Man in the World?” Really?)

It’s really his glasses which are getting most of the attention: They’re the Google Glass glasses (how are we supposed to say that, by the way? Google Glasses? Google Glass Glasses? Google’s Great Googley Moogley Glassy Classy Glasses? Chrome?) that has gotten so much attention but remain, and I quote, “in flux.”

To recap, a blogger took a picture of a man wearing toy glasses who would only be recognized by a blogger. It’s an interesting story, but how it warrants the front page treatment is beyond me.

Brin is likely in New York because Google is about to ask developers to come up with ideas for how these glasses can be used. Sure, Google’s got the basic Heads Up Display smartphone notification feature written down somewhere, but what else should these things do?

If that’s all these glasses can do, you’d be better off buying one of those new smart watches.

Many news sites made the point that Brin probably couldn’t be using some of the core features of the Google Glassy Classy Glass Glasses due to poor cellular reception in the tunnels.

Really…what else do you guys have?

I figured it’d be fun to see what else I could determine from the picture and make glaringly obvious statements based on the threadbare information given us by Mr. Zerkin. Play along with me, won’t you?

Based on this picture, we can safely assume that Mr. Brin is either impervious to cold temperatures or bad at planning his wardrobe for the day. For instance, that nondescript hippy-dippy west coast track jacket of his is now where near as thick and padded as the other 3 jackets which appear in this picture. The other passengers on this subway train are wearing coats which add at least 30 pounds to their frame, and in walks Mr. Google himself. I bet he was all like “Oh, I’m sorry guys, I thought it was supposed to be like 70 degrees. That’s cold for the West coast. I didn’t have time to think about how cold it would be because I’m so jet lagged, The West coast is on a way different time zone, you know. They say it doesn’t effect you, but it does, like totally…” says Mr. Brin.

West Coasters love talking about their weird time zone.

Speaking of weight, Mr. Brin sticks out like a sore vegan thumb, looking all of 105 pounds while his co-commuters look as if they’ve eaten nothing but recipes from Paula Deen’s cookbooks their entire life. (The Lady’s Brunch Burger, anyone?) And those running pants Sergey is wearing? Is he escaping the law?

The picture would suggest not, actually, as he’s carrying unknown contents in a mysterious-yet-not-inconspicuous yellow bag. I bet he paid for whatever it was he has in that bag, and I bet he tried to pay with ad space on said nondescript, hippy-dippy track jacket.

The clerk probably just took his Benjamin and let him take his solicitations elsewhere.

Point is, it’s nice to see a rich and powerful man take the subway. It’s even nicer to see an executive like Brin dogfood his own stuff. It shows class, and for as much crap as I like to give Google, I can respect that.

Yet, the Google Glass Glasses aren’t really a real thing yet. The company doesn’t really even know what to do with them.

It’s just as likely that Brin was wanting to disguise himself but is just really terrible at blending in to a crowd.

This picture and story is Retweetable for sure…but is it front-page fodder? Doubtable.

Snarky blog fodder, on the other hand…

Image Credit: Noah Zerkin via Twitter

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