Like most meetings involving the Chief of Facebook, it had been almost unbearably uncomfortable.
When Ev and Biz arrived at Facebook's campus, they were escorted into a small conference room and told that, 'Mark's running a few minutes late, but he'll be right in.'
The room was grey and relatively sparse looking more like a Russian prison than part of the office of the hip social network. Given the limited seating options, Biz and Ev chose a tiny 2-seater couch that butted up against the wall.
Biz cracked a few jokes while they waited. Then a few minutes later, Facebook's boyish CEO walked into the room, sitting in a chair that sat above them, on a higher plane. Facebook looking down on Twitter.
'Should I close the door, or leave it open?", Ev asked.
'Yes', Mark replied.
Ev looked at Biz, who shrugged.
'Yes, I should close it, or Yes, I should leave it open?', Ev asked.
'Yes', Mark said again.
Ev decided to play it safe, leaving the door half open and half closed.
Mark started talking, pausing slightly as he spoke from a script in his head. Every word was calculated, every sentence plotted, every comma mapped out. He was like an army general meeting on the battlefield to discuss merging armies.
'What do you think your valuation is right now?', Mark asked as they both sat uncomfortably across from and below him, peering out at a boy who could hypothetically speaking quite happily buy them or merger them, all with the same exact expression on his face.
'Throw out a number', Mark said.
Ev paused, looking at Biz, then fired off a shot, '500 million'.
Silence filled the room.
Mark looked at them, unfazed. 'That's a big number'.
'That's what we believe we are worth', Ev said.
Excerpt from 'Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal' by Nick Bilton.