My first week at Semgrep

Put all of your unhappiness aside.
My nails and dress were matchy-matchy for my first day!
My nails and dress were matchy-matchy for my first day!

Since I’ve been keeping this giant secret for so long, I’m very excited to finally be able to share all of my good news. This blog post is going to be all about my first week at Semgrep. We choose July 31 as my first day because they were already having several other people start that day, and because they were hosting Semgrep Hub Week—team building events for every single team, in person. As you might imagine, I am going to be a mostly-remote worker, so a chance to meet the entire team in person was something I could not miss. They flew people from all over the planet to San Francisco, with a focus on connecting, having fun, and innovation. I’m told that normally there’s more work and fewer cruises, art lessons, mini put and other fun activities, but that there’s always lots of bubble tea. 😀

My first day was just a lot of airplanes, and sharing on social media that I’m going “somewhere” and asking everyone to guess. I arrived way too late in the day to see anyone, unfortunately. For the record, my followers are brilliant, and several of them guessed not only which city I was in, but also the purpose of my trip, very quickly, with few hints! My followers are way too smart to have the secret last very long, so we knew we only had a few days at best to make our announcement.

Tanya and Clint pose in front of the Semgrep sign at HQ
Clint and I pose in front of the Semgrep sign at HQ. Getting to work with my long-time friend Clint Gibler is a HUGE PLUS!!!
A few members of my new team!
Even more of my team!
Meet (some of) Semgrep People Ops. THEY HIRED ME!

My second day I had a previous-commitment teaching engagement, so I couldn’t come into the office until around 1:00 pm, and went I entered the building I was immediately greeted with smiling faces! My new boss Pablo greeted me with a hug, same with Clint, and so many more of my new co-workers! I’m going to have several images throughout the blog post of some of the friendly faces I met all week. There were so many people! We’re almost at 150 at this point, and growing fast!

The first day (for me) team building exercise was a graffiti painting lesson. No, seriously! We were all given access to spray paint, a quick lesson, and then let loose upon a couple of brick walls in downtown San Francisco!

Chris is smart, he wore a hazmat suit and got NO PAINT on his clothes.
Chris is smart, he wore a hazmat suit and got NO PAINT on his clothes.
Another of my colleagues who managed not to get paint on himself!
Another of my colleagues who managed not to get paint on himself!

After a few hours of painting, several of us walked back towards the office and decided Dim Sum was in order. One of my teammates had never tried tofu, eggplant or potstickers before in his life, and was a VERY good sport about trying literally everything we brought to the table. He says he doesn’t need to try tofu again, but the rest was a hit! I’ve converted one more person into a Dim Sum fan!

They walked me back to the office to get my laptops (I have 3 with me now, the WHP one, a burner one for Def Con, and my new Semgrep M1). I got to see a bunch of SF at night that I likely wouldn’t have wanted to wander through by myself at that time of day, so that was really nice.

On day two, I had to teach all morning again, so I arrived at the office quite late (1:00 pm). At 3:30 pm, which seemed to arrive in only a millisecond, we left to go on what I was told was a cruise, but it was actually a sailboat that we went all over the San Francisco Bay. Lots of us got splashed! There was also a lot of tasty cheese, fruit and other snacks. I ate a lot of cheese, lol.

I'm on a BOAT!
We’re ON A BOAT!

After the cruise we went to a giant food truck park, and I got to have a rice burger (the buns where made of deep fried rice, and I want you to know that I learned that I APPROVE of deep frying rice, YUM), and bubble tea! This trip involved a lot of bubble tea, and I noticed that people were offered alcohol throughout the week and a lot of us opted for boba (fancy bubble tea) and other non-alcoholic alternatives. Startup culture is often “let’s get hammered”, or it has seemed that way to me, and as a person who doesn’t drink all that often, at times I have felt left out. I never felt ‘left out’ or pressured to drink at all this week, and that was SO NICE. It’s cool that other people want to enjoy a beer or two, but I will take a fancy latte or bubble tea over beer any day. Mmmmmm, sugar. LOL.

On day 3 was more meeting new people, starting to tell everyone what my new role will be, and suggesting 400 different new features for the product (this is what happens when you use something a lot with clients, you have a build up of suggestions). I had several 1:1 meetings, and even more introductions. Once the work slowed down, I went to play mini put with the security research team. There was more bubble tea!

Inside the heated food truck with HR and Support teams

Day 4, the Friday, we finally got to announce that We Hack Purple and I had joined Semgrep! I remember I pressed “send” on the announcement and then we both ran to the Hub Week presentations. When I got back to my desk I had a couple (hundred) notifications… LOL! The Hub Week presentations where all new features and innovations that various teams had made at Semgrep that week. Not only were a bunch of them AMAZING, the presentations were absolutely hilarious! They had one employee MC the whole thing, and we were all in fits of giggles for 2 hours while the teams showed off their cool new creations. Although I am not allowed to share them as several will probably become part of the product very soon, I CAN share that there was: ASCII art, music, dad jokes, and Hawaiian leis for everyone!

They gave me a new macbook!

The last thing I did this trip was visit my friend Anshu Basnal of Cloud Defense. I know I talk about them a lot! They are my friends. 😀 Anyway, I don’t usually get to spend a ton of time with Anshu (he’s a CEO, he has stuff to do), and it was nice he took his entire Sunday to show me around SF and make sure I got to the airport on time. Thank you my friend!

Anshu and me
Anshu and me