Dear Mr. Bezos,
I fear you may be working on the wrong problem.
I placed an order for three umbrellas and some pet stain remover last Friday. It’s been raining a lot here in Chicago, and my dog has suddenly started mistaking my basement carpet for my neighbor’s yard, even though one is lush and green and the other is brown, stubby, and smells like polyester and those fluorescent orange cheese crackers.
I placed the order at 10:06 a.m. At 7:00 a.m. the next morning, on my way out to retrieve my newspaper, I nearly tripped on your Amazon Prime box that had somehow miraculously appeared on my doorstep.
Holy Supply Chain! The Santa Claus of my youth couldn’t have worked with such stealth and efficiency. And did I mention that the Friday on which I placed the order was Black Friday? The same Black Friday that crushed the Neiman Marcus site for hours at a time?
Clearly the tens of billions you’ve been investing in warehouses and systems are paying off. Either that, or the Mephistophelian bargain you made back at the Albuquerque crossroads continues to shower you with good fortune. Now that I think about it, it must be the latter–only the Devil is willing to work so hard on the day after Thanksgiving.
Anyway, you’re doing a hell of a job. But I do have one little thing I would like to point out: I don’t think I need to get my stuff that quickly. Sure, it was nice, but I think I would have been just as happy to get my pet stain remover on Tuesday.
So before you squeeze that delivery time down to hours or minutes, let me propose that you look into a bigger problem I have with your service:
What am I supposed to do with all this #%$&!* cardboard?
The picture at the top of this post is just one week’s worth of boxes delivered to my house (from Amazon and others.) I admit my family may not be normal, as we have the same aversion to shopping in stores as Donald Trump has to historical facts. But nonetheless, this will be everyone’s problem if your company continues to grow at the pace you’re planning.
It’s a serious pain to break down all these boxes and then bribe the recycling guy to take more than my allotted quota each week, but it’s an even bigger deal than that. It’s wasteful! Is there a greater sin in these times? With each box’s arrival, I feel like a Roman aristocrat eating peeled-by-eunuchs grapes as the Visigoths crawl over the gates.
Shame on me. And shame on you.