Ever accidentally order something from China?
Ebay has had East Asian merchants offering free shipping for quite some time, and if you’re not careful, you can wind up buying something from one of them – and then realizing you’re not going to see your merchandise for several weeks.
Free shipping from China is amazing, and I kind of love it.
I am just up the street from the third-largest container ship port system in the US. When I go to and from work, I drive along an enormous logistical system of cranes, docks, railroads, trucking, and airports. This is a typical view:
As is this:
After a while, you start to notice the containers everywhere. On flatbed trucks. On flatbed railroad cars. On ships. In piles at docks. They are everywhere. When I was growing up, I didn’t see this – I saw boxcars on trains. Trucks were more than just flatbed rigs. The invention of the container (thanks, Mike Cane!) significantly changed the worldwide proliferation of stuff. It allowed Amazon to happen. It allowed Ikea to happen. It allowed worldwide brand ubiquity to happen.
Every day I traverse the same route – Staten Island Expressway to NJ Turnpike to Route 78 – and come back via Bayonne and Richmond Terrace. I see our stuff coming and going. It’s pretty jaw-dropping to comprehend the enormity of it. These guys have made a good start. (Thanks again, Mike Cane!)