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Susan Shepard
Attended Stanford University
Lives in Mountain View, CA
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Susan Shepard

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We just updated our Transparency Report, showing how many requests Google gets for information about its users. But we're not allowed to give the full story because the U.S. government says that requests under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) must be kept secret. We can tell you this: Requests have more than doubled around the world since 2009, and more than tripled in the U.S.: http://g.co/u5sp

Share this if you believe you have a right to know what our governments are up to. 
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Susan Shepard

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Well, I don't think I'll be patronizing +Starbucks Coffee anymore.

This is one of the most disappointing responses I've received regarding my celiac disease.  The majority of the text reads as legalese, and then they point me to their website to check the ingredients myself--except no where on their website do they list their ingredients. Their Menu FAQ (http://www.starbucks.com/customer-service/faqs/menu) states that they do not have ingredient lists available for beverages on the website and to contact customer service or ask the baristas instead.

The email reads as if they have no interest in even trying to prevent cross contamination or making it easy for me to figure out what might be safe to consume.

Given some of the products carried at Starbucks, I expected a much better response.  (I was prompted to ask because another person with celiac disease recently discovered that their "Skinny" flavored lattes use syrup that contains wheat (or wheat by-products)).

I should note that my husband goes to Starbucks at least twice a week and in the past often brought me back a drink, too.

===========================================

Hello Susan,

Thank you for contacting Starbucks Coffee Company.

At this time, Starbucks is unable to guarantee a "gluten-free" environment in our retail locations due to the potential for cross contamination with gluten-containing products. The open environment and operating procedures of our store locations may present additional risk for gluten-sensitive customers aside from the gluten-containing ingredients themselves. "Gluten-free" is a claim with specific requirements defined by government agencies and industry standards.

We are unable to make this claim on a product unless the item is specifically formulated and manufactured to meet the definition of the claim.

If there are any drinks that would fit into your dietary requirements you would find them and their ingredients on Starbucks.com by viewing our menu.

I apologize for the inconvenience.

Thank you again for taking the time to contact us and we look forward to welcoming you back to your local store soon. I hope you are having an enjoyable week, Susan.

Sincerely,
Gretta

customer service

We would love to hear your feedback. Click here to take a short survey.
Manage your account at starbucks.com/account
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--- Original Message ---
From: Susan Shepard
Received: 7/23/12 12:10:19 PM MDT
To: <sbxinfo@buf.sitel.net>
Subject: allergens

Is an iced decaf vanilla latte gluten free? I usually get 2% or whole milk. So specifically, is the vanilla syrup gluten free?I have celiac disease, so it's extremely important that I do not eat gluten or I will get sick.
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Update: They did send me the list of ingredients of the vanilla syrup: Sugar, Water, Natural Flavours, Preservative: Potassium Sorbate (E202), Citric Acid (E330), Colour: Caramel (E150d)

Since Natural Flavours and Caramel coloring can contain allergens, I asked if those contained gluten.  

They responded: "We use the term "natural flavors" in compliance with the labeling requirements of the Food and Drug Administration. (These can be found in the Code of Federal Regulations Book 21 CFR 101.22)
 
Starbucks is committed to providing a safe, natural product that meets all regulatory and food safety requirements.  While we understand that some customers may have a need to know specific ingredient information not listed on the ingredient panel prior to consuming a product, our flavor information is proprietary, and not something we reveal.
 
If you have concerns about a beverage possibly containing ingredients that you do no wish to consume, we would recommend that you not consume the beverage."

That's disappointing.  They can't even confirm if their flavoring is gluten free or not without revealing proprietary information.  I would assume they can tell me if it contains wheat or not since that is considered a top 8 allergen and is required in labeling laws.

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reviewed:
Blossom True Value Hardware
1297 West El Camino Real, mt view, CA 94040
I always go here when I need keys made or my knives sharpened. They do an excellent job and carry the unusual key used on our bottom locks. They recently (as of June 2012) got new knife sharpening machine, and it does an amazing job. These are the sharpest our knives have ever been, and I have tried many services in the Bay Area over the last 10 years. Each one can now truly cut paper and slice a tomato without bruising it. It's a joy to cook again. We will be back!
Quality ExcellentAppeal GoodService Excellent
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Susan Shepard

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Susan Shepard

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Couldn't have said it better.
 
 
To Rep. Boehner: let the House do it's job. Bring a clean bill which funds the government to a vote and #justvote  on it. If it passes, it passes. If it fails, it fails. That's the job of our representative government.

To the US House of Representatives: please rid yourself of this silly business where a bill can't even get voted on without the Speaker's say-so. You've created a situation that makes America ungovernable. I get that it's complicated, but that's the problem you need to solve.

To the US Senate: and while I'm at it, enact real filibuster reform and remove the silent filibuster. If someone wants to oppose legislation, make 'em stand before the country and say so "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" style.

To the US media: Please, please stop with this "they're both dug in" "everyone refuses to compromise" "both sides are to blame" utter bullshit. Congress voted for a law (Obamacare). The President signed it. The Supreme Court upheld it. All branches of government participated. There's nothing to compromise on. There's nothing to sit down at the table and discuss. If Republicans want to change or abolish Obamacare, then they should win some elections and vote on it. Just like all our laws. Shutting down the government because you didn't get your way isn't hard-ball politics, it's irresponsible and childish. It might even be a violation of the oath of office. So please, journalists, give us a break on your ridiculous even-handedness.

To the Republican Party: your winner-take-all primary process combined with your toxic-to-democracy gerrymandering has backfired. Not only are you driving yourself over a cliff, you're taking the rest of us with you.

To the Democratic Party: you don't represent me anymore either, so wipe that smug smile off your face, look in the mirror, and see that you're just about as progressive as Ronald Reagan.
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Susan Shepard

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Google Search UX is hiring. We're looking for visual designers and prototypers, as well as design leaders.

Send a message via my profile if…
- you are a fantastic designer or prototyper
- you use Google Search and think "I can make this much better."
- you want your work to have a positive impact for over a billion people
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Susan Shepard

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A friend from college wrote this about children.  I love this. I strive to be this kind of parent.

http://jennyhobsonschoice.blogspot.com/2012/09/its-okay.html
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Susan Shepard

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reviewed:
Asian Box
855 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94301
My husband picked up take-out from Asian Box for us recently. One was pork with sriracha sauce, brown rice, and veggies and one was chicken with peanut sauce, brown rice, and veggies. Both were tasty and filling. The veggies seemed very fresh but also perfectly cooked so I didn't feel like I was eating a raw salad. At the same time it seemed heathy but in the good "I don't feel guilty about eating take out but yay! I'm eating yummy takeout" kind of way.

Of course most happily for me, everything at the restaurant is gluten free. The employees even are only allowed to bring gluten free food into the restaurant. I love it when I find a place that I can eat at safely that is also delicious. Definitely repeatable, despite the distance from our home.

Note: I had to add Decor and Service scores but as I haven't been there, they are somewhat bogus.
Food ExcellentDecor GoodService Very Good
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Susan Shepard

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This is why I am deeply disturbed by all the Republicans (and others) that claim to "Obamacare" is terrible. Maybe what President Obama helped pass isn't perfect, but without it, things are even worse.

I want to be able to be independently employed some day, but since I have celiac disease, I guess I can say farewell to that hope.
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:)

That's true. I guess I saw it more like he got lucky.

Susan Shepard

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Story
Introduction
I work on Google Map Engine (backends) at Google.

Although I've worked at computer related jobs since I graduated from college (IT at P&G, technical staff at Stanford on a CS research project), it wasn't until about 10 years ago I really embraced my geekiness and went back to school for my masters in Computer Science at Stanford. I've been working at Google ever since (billing systems, Google Reader, MyMaps, and now Places for Business and BizBuilder)

In my free time I'm very fascinated by food: I love going to farmer's markets, following food blogs in Reader, pouring over cookbooks for menu ideas, cooking dinner for friends, and, of course, going out to eat. I'm always looking for good recipes, especially gluten-free ones that are appealing to toddlers and adults.
Education
  • Stanford University
    Computer Science (MS), 2001 - 2004
  • Indiana University at Bloomington
    Japanese Language and Literature, 1991 - 1995
  • Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy
    1988 - 1991
Basic Information
Gender
Female
Relationship
Married
Work
Occupation
Software engineer
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Mountain View, CA
Previously
Bolingbrook, IL - Bolingbrook, IL - Cincinnati, OH - Nagoya, Japan - San Francisco, CA
Susan Shepard's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Chrome Beta - Apps on Android Market
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The speed and simplicity of Chrome, now on your Android phone and tablet. Browse fast on your Android smartphone or tablet, and bring your p

Gluten Free Bay Area - Google Maps
maps.google.com

Find local businesses, view maps and get driving directions in Google Maps.

Layered Chicken and Black Bean Enchilada Casserole
allrecipes.com

Layers of sauce and tortillas mingle with a seasoned chicken and black bean mixture. This is a delicious and easy recipe best served with a

today’s recipe: grilled ham and cheese with pears - Everyday Food Blog -...
everydayfoodblog.marthastewart.com

For this grown-up take on a grilled cheese, choose pears that are firm and without blemishes, and have stems attached. Prep Time: 20 minutes

Time, technology and leaping seconds
googleblog.blogspot.com

Google's Site Reliability team is responsible for keeping Google's services and data centers up and running 24/7. In this post, you'll hear

Martin Solveig &amp; Dragonette ft. Idoling - Big In Japan (Official Mus...
www.youtube.com

Join us on Facebook: http://facebook.com/spinninrecords Follow us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/spinninrecords Spinnin' Records proudly pre

Bath Time for Baby Sloths | Too Cute
www.youtube.com

The only thing cuter than a dry baby sloth is a wet one! Too Cute's MOST ADORABLE CLIPS! http://animal.discovery.com/videos/too-cute-kittens

This is our most favorite Mexican restaurant. It's not a 'sit down, order a margarita' kind of place. Instead it's a 'omg the best chips and salsa ever' and I can order just one sope, perfectly fried, topped with al pastor meat, refried beans, cheese, lettuce, tomato and excellent crema. It's the perfect amount of food and really, really tasty food at that. My husband loves the flautas. I wish we still lived near this place. We make a point of visiting at least once a month even though it's a 20 minute drive. Very casual but also very clean and tidy, not good for really large groups. ETA: Just visited the new location in Santa Clara. Same excellent food and service.
• • •
Food: ExcellentDecor: GoodService: Very good
Public - 10 months ago
reviewed 10 months ago
I am so, so happy that Ava took over the old market. I try to do my shopping here every week. The owners are really friendly and responsive--I even once accidentally left my wallet there, and they figured out who I was and contacted me through our neighborhood mailing list. They are great about providing products people ask for--lots of organic products and gluten free. I bought the most amazing gluten free cheese crackers there once. The butcher is excellent, too. They have grass fed beef and pork and are happy to get things they don't normally carry from their supplier if you give them a little advance notice. They have also done a great job of slowly improving the store. I love being able to walk to such an excellent grocery store. It's such a wonderful asset to our community!
• • •
Quality: ExcellentAppeal: ExcellentService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
Excellent pozole--meaty (complete with pork bone), rich and warming! It was perfect for a cold day. Interior is clean, well maintained though nothing fancy. Service is friendly. Salsa was good, chips OK. Loved the the complimentary pickled veggies. We will be back.
Food: ExcellentDecor: GoodService: Very good
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
My husband picked up take-out from Asian Box for us recently. One was pork with sriracha sauce, brown rice, and veggies and one was chicken with peanut sauce, brown rice, and veggies. Both were tasty and filling. The veggies seemed very fresh but also perfectly cooked so I didn't feel like I was eating a raw salad. At the same time it seemed heathy but in the good "I don't feel guilty about eating take out but yay! I'm eating yummy takeout" kind of way. Of course most happily for me, everything at the restaurant is gluten free. The employees even are only allowed to bring gluten free food into the restaurant. I love it when I find a place that I can eat at safely that is also delicious. Definitely repeatable, despite the distance from our home. Note: I had to add Decor and Service scores but as I haven't been there, they are somewhat bogus.
• • •
Food: ExcellentDecor: GoodService: Very good
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
96 reviews
Map
Map
Map
I ordered take out--a masala dosa and a quinoa dosa with tofu. The order was ready and waiting when I arrived. Service was friendly and parking was easy. It was still warm when my husband got home 20 minutes later. It was tasty and filling--I really like the sweet and hot sauce on the tofu. It came with a tomato-y side that wasn't too spicy. That was great since we were sharing our dinner with our 18 month old. The quinoa dosa was a bit tangier than regular dosa but still good. It didn't seem very greasy. I love that it's a bit bougy and so it notes which dishes are gluten free, vegetarian, or organic. Basically, it's take out that's reasonably healthy and safe for me to eat. Yay! We'll be back.
• • •
Food: Very goodDecor: GoodService: Very good
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
Very gluten free friendly and the food tastes great. I was able to order a bowl of veggies with my hummus, but they also have her bed quinoa or rice available. Oh! And their falafel are gluten free. We will return!
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
I always go here when I need keys made or my knives sharpened. They do an excellent job and carry the unusual key used on our bottom locks. They recently (as of June 2012) got new knife sharpening machine, and it does an amazing job. These are the sharpest our knives have ever been, and I have tried many services in the Bay Area over the last 10 years. Each one can now truly cut paper and slice a tomato without bruising it. It's a joy to cook again. We will be back!
• • •
Quality: ExcellentAppeal: GoodService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago