An Aside – Why Silicon Valley Food Trucks?

I wanted to take a post on the blog to talk about why I am doing this and why it is important to me.

I think it’s useful to state up front a few of the non-reasons:

  1. I don’t own, run, or have any financial interest in any food truck, cart, or other food service facility. I have never held any position or had any financial interest in the food service industry.
  2. I’m not a professional journalist, writer, or critic, nor am I particularly interested in becoming one. I have always loved writing, and have never been particularly gifted at it, as you can tell from this blog.
  3. I’m not starting a business relating to food trucks or the food service industry; I co-own a technology company, which is so far outside of the food service industry I’m not sure how it could get much further.
  4. I’m not selling advice, access, products, services, or anything else to the food service industry.
  5. I’m not doing it for free food. That’s not to say I’m going to turn down any offers of free food, but I’m paying for everything I review. If you slip me a taco or a falafel, I’ll say something nice about you personally, but it won’t affect what I say about your business.
  6. I’m not expecting to get rich. I’m hoping advertising will let the blog pay for itself in time and, perhaps, in more time, even provide a small income to partially justify the time I put into it. But that’s about the extent of my ambition for this project.

Now that one might reasonably be perfectly confused, please let me explain my reasons, convoluted though they may be.

First, I love to eat. I am an overweight man, and I freely admit it. I’m not happy about it and would like to lose about 30 lbs., but I don’t see it happening soon because I really enjoy eating.

I have particularly always loved to eat unusual things, preferably in unusual circumstances. About 30 years ago, I stopped eating meat, although I did start eating fish again some years back, but it’s even harder to find unusually good things to eat if you limit yourself to meatless items.

I love the idea of bringing really great food straight out into the street. I love going abroad because of the availability of good, interesting street food, from crepes on the street in Paris to “Hollandse Nieuwe” in Scheveningen to the night market in Taipei and the tiny but intricate stands (and even vending machines) of Tokyo. And let’s not forget the trucks of Portland, Oregon – I salivate just thinking about them.

I am an entrepreneur by spirit and profession. I admire, respect, and appreciate people who will take a risk on an idea. While I admire people who come up with an idea and raise tens of million of dollars from venture capitalists to build a new empire, I find myself much more enamored with the kind of entrepreneur who scrapes together tens of thousands of dollars from bank accounts, friends, and family to start a company to serve an as-yet-unseen need.

The food truck, food cart, or tent at a farmer’s market is entrepreneurship on the edge: low capital, high risk, straight from the means of production to the customer. Sweat equity. Immediate feedback. You load up the truck, find a place, then cook and sell until the ingredients or the customers are gone. Some days you make the rent, some days you get to eat the leftovers. It’s simple and, in some sense even I don’t fully understand, pure.

So, why a blog about food trucks in Silicon Valley? The answer is simple: because I had to. I love the idea, I love the food, and I love the business. I really wanted to go forth and try the things these amazing entrepreneurs are putting out, see the trucks, eat the food, and share the experience.

This works best, of course, it you share the experience with me and share your thoughts, observations, arguments, and experiences in the comments. I intend to invite guests to write entries, interview people in the industry, and, of course, eat at every food truck I can find.

There are a couple of ads on the site, and I encourage everyone to click on them if you see something of interest. Each click brings in a few pennies to defray expenses, and (it must be noted) I am doing this on a shoestring, so every penny counts.

So, thanks for coming along, and let me know what you think!

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