Max Bell Alper has befouled his own well. He's soiled his own bed. You can use Google to hunt down other apropos analogies. Busloads of employees roll out of San Francisco every day to make it so.
Sadly, the story of the day, the week, the month didn't last much past the morning. Today, our down-the-hall colleagues at the Guardian covered an anti-gentrification-inspired blockade of a Google bus, and captured on film a man indicating he was a Google employee behaving like a Central Casting entitled Googler/ascendent San Franciscan. His indignant thesis, bellowed at protesters: "You can't pay your rent? I'm sorry. Get a better job. ... This is a city for the right people who can afford it. You can't afford it? You can leave."
It'd be hard to imagine any individual more neatly epitomizing the ethos of today's skewed, rapidly gentrifying city unless, say, he ripped off a tent from a freezing homeless person (don't bother -- the city's got that that covered).
But it turns out this wasn't an outburst. It was a performance.
The Guardian soon updated its high-trafficking post to acknowledge that it -- and everyone else -- had been had. This wasn't an incomprehensibly oblivious techie but an incomprehensibly oblivious union organizer and performance artist.
It was both a surreal moment and a transcendentally stupid one. Now everyone is left to feel that much angrier and dumber for the morning's misadventure.
Alper, somehow, decided the proper method of channeling the undeniable statistics and heart-wrenching narratives of the city's Malthusian housing economy into some means of relief for the afflicted was to hoodwink everyone with a brazen display of phony playacting.
Congratulations to Alper, who just managed to make himself the Rosie Ruiz of the anti-gentrification movement.
Shakespeare wasn't just filling up a wordcount when he posited the value of not allowing one's good name to be filched -- and now Alper has made poor indeed many, many concerned souls for whom, frankly, he was never entitled to speak.