Shop ’til You Drop

Transitions 1 and 2, 2012, Jamie Okuma (Luiseno/Shoshone-Bannock/Okinawan-Hawaiian

Transitions 1 and 2, 2012, Jamie Okuma (Luiseno/Shoshone-Bannock/Okinawan-Hawaiian

We might describe our world as having retail sanity, but wholesale madness – Peter Thiel

Amazon announced Dash, a new service designed to ensure that you never run out of your household consumables. With Dash, each product that you subscribe to comes with a little button. It looks like a doorbell, with the product’s logo on it. Press the button and a Wi-Fi message is transmitted to Amazon central and a new package of say toilet paper appears on your doorstep. Now until Amazon get its drone service up and flying, you may find yourself sitting in the smallest room in the house for a long time, waiting and waiting …

Stranded, stuck on the toilet bowl. What do you do when you’re stranded and there’s no paper on the roll?

Last month was Girl Scout cookie season and everything was going just fine at work, until management stepped into it. A new decree was promulgated saying that the selling of Girl Scout cookies on company property is now prohibited. Word came down this year after the fact, but still there was an awful hue and cry that erupted from the parents of little girls. Jokes were made about arranging meets outside the fence to distribute the contraband. The only problem being that such meets would have to be further on down the fence from where the already ostracized smokers hangout. I suggested that the Girl Scouts offer the company a piece of the action, but since the Girl Scouts already only get such a small part of the proceeds, this was met with much derision.

In other news the plastering/painting has continued all week. Warm weather has allowed us to open the windows and dissipate the fumes at night. The ceiling and all of the trim is done. Tomorrow, he will “put up the walls” and be done with it. It is really looking quite nice and the difference between the rooms where he worked and those that have not been done is startling. After he is done, I plan on continuing on, with some of the easy rooms that were not done. I think that we will ask him to come back later though to do the rooms that were not done. We can move all of the stuff that we have piled up into those rooms, into the rooms that he has finished.

El Capitan

Two rock climbers made history this week when they successfully summited El Capitan, after 3,000 vertical feet and nineteen days of climbing. I have just a small inkling of the difficulty of this feat, because when we were at Yosemite a couple of years ago, we hiked up, not climbed mind you, only a third of that height and I was thoroughly huffing and a puffing by that exertion. Their feat was a testament to their strength and stamina, plus their willpower and courage. After peering up towards such lofty heights, it is time for me to return to earth and the more mundane matters of my life.

One bright spot this week was that I was accepted by Amazon in my application to them to purchase their new Echo. The Echo, is a Wi-Fi enabled sound system that can be operated by voice command. It is about the size and shape of a cleanser can. To tell you the truth, I am more intrigued with Amazon’s marketing strategy than I am with the product itself. Let me back up a bit here first. Three weeks before Christmas, Paul, who has the cube next to mine at work announced one morning that he had just received his Echo. He explained the application process and that it had taken him two weeks to be approved for purchase. I applied my own Echo that very same day. At the time, I was thinking of giving away the Echo as a Christmas present. Six weeks later, I finally received my permission to purchase my Echo. I’ll be the first to admit that Paul is more tech savvy than me. That might explain why his wait was only two weeks, while mine was six. In this world of instant gratification, of which Amazon is a major purveyor of, I am intrigued with their blatantly obvious delayed gratification inspired marketing strategy. I imagine that this strategy is a reaction to their disastrous Fire phone rollout. I have a just few more days to exercise my newly granted permission. The permission does come with one tangible benefit, at $99 the Echo is half off its regular price.