Some people worry that technology and artificial intelligence will soon replace us mortal bags of flesh. If the supercomputers at one of the world’s most famous shipping companies is an example of this superiority, I’m not sweating it.
I ordered a part for my lawnmower on June 9. Since at the time I didn’t need it yesterday, I chose “standard shipping.” I came to find that the part was on backorder and wouldn’t ship until the 26th. I figured the grass might be a bit long by then, but no biggie. That’s when the cross-country summer vacation of my purchase began.
Amazon has spoiled me. The “order Monday, delivered Wednesday” scheme lulled me into a false sense of comfort.
My part shipped from Livonia, MI. The next day it was in Perrysburg, OH (You’re going the wrong way!) The following day, it arrived in New Berlin, WI, and then in Chicago. From there it took the scenic route to Kearny, NE (they have a great farmer’s market in Kearny). The journey continued to Green River, WY, which has a bowling alley and not much else. It took another three days to reach Salt Lake City and must have had relatives there because it spent a few days.
Finally, it reached home, sort of, as it spent the weekend mingling with other packages at the local post office. Delivery was on July 8, a full 13 days later.
The grass (OK, grass and weeds) are now about 2 feet high and I’ll probably break another part of the mower trying to hack through that mess.
In 1860, “Pony” Bob Haslam was credited with the longest continuous ride in Pony Express history. He traveled 380 miles, avoiding warring Indians, in under three days. Is AI going to mean the death of us? I’m not so worried.