the eavesdropper

Listening In Outside Twitter’s New York Office

Photo-Illustration: Curbed; Photo: Kena Betancur/VIEW press

Living in New York means constantly, discreetly listening in — to breakups at bars, friend fights on the subway, and gossip about complete strangers or, from time to time, people you do in fact know. But what happens when you situate yourself in an ultraspecific spot around the city over an extended period of time and listen intently? You learn a surprising amount about the state of things. Here, we stood in front of Twitter’s 17th Street offices at the end of the workday, a few days after mass layoffs began.

Where are we going?

I think if you paired up [X] and [X], you got yourself a team. To do what we want to do with the people we wanna do it with means we have to go to war. All-out war. [X] is out, broken bottles — an all-out war.
That’s right. That’s right.
I’ll hire up, you stay out of it, and we nuke the joint. That’s what we’re talking about: We take all their best people. You realize we only have 102 days of this left — if we can pull this off.
That’s right. 
For now, we hold tight, and we watch the news.
What are you getting — chicken?

Six people left while talking to [X].
Well, was that what they wanted?
It was unclear what they wanted.

Don’t give up, just stay. Save yourself. I go to work for the money. I know this is not what you signed up for. You didn’t prep for this.
No, I know … 

Happy to hear you made the cut — the Rapture, if you will.
A wild couple days. 
How’s life? He just moved in with his girlfriend.

Adios, guys. Always a pleasure.

A fucking Monday? It feels like it’s Thursday!
You know, [X] is on vacation. 
[X] who we’re getting dinner with. She lives in California. She’s been on vacation this whole time. 

This was exactly the conversation: “I don’t like what you’re insinuating!” “Well, I’m not insinuating. I’m SAYING something.”

She’s like, “I don’t care about the contracts.” I’m like, “I’m living in reality. The contracts exist.” I didn’t think I’d be doing this fight. I’m living in a fight!
Yeah, dude. You sign a new deal?

She doesn’t like [X]. That’s okay, though.
She doesn’t like [X]! 
She likes the loud ones.

She was like, “I supervise all types, not just engineers. Regular people, too.”

Yeah, but like, you’re also the founders! You’re so invested!

It still works. It still turns on. I can access my files.
They care about you! But does it still run?  
It’s slow but not terribly slow.
Go get yourself an M1. 
Do I need an M1?
That thing will last a decade. It doesn’t overheat. It’s much faster.
How does it not overheat?
I’m not sure. But it’s way quieter, way faster. I feel like get it now and ride it out for a decade. 
Is it expensive?
You can get the smaller ones. I don’t know how much the 13-inch goes for. I’m gonna go this way. 
See you.

I was like, “Whaaat!?” And I ran to the roof and was like, “Whaaat!?”
Anytime I think of [X], I just cry.
[X] shepherded you through.
Yes. Exactly.

I’m so glad we got a little bit of time. I’ve been thinking about you.
I’ll see you tomorrow. 
I’ve been thinking of you a lot. I mean, seriously. I’ll see you tomorrow.

So good to catch up. Let me know if I can help you at all. I have connections at a lot of companies and stuff.

Look, as soon as this shit stabilizes, I’ll stop driving.
You training in or driving? 
Driving all the way.

They’re all falconers. They have like a hundred falcons and eagles and …

I was working there … I would like to say bye … That’s not very nice!

Have a good night!
All right, ttyl.

Listening In Outside Twitter’s New York Office