Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Dear Amazon: Somebody Wants to Buy a Brazilian Honey Wax. But Not Me.

Dear Amazon:

I like you. Actually, I think you’re pretty great. We’ve known each other for a long time, and I really appreciate that you understand me so well by now.

You know, for instance, that I’ve thought about buying the newish Beastie Boys album. And that I was recently in the market for a new router. And you told me about this cool Madison Smartt Bell book I didn’t know about (I bought that one — sent it straight into the Kindle).

So I’m always happy to hear from you.

But lately you’ve been acting … weird. Like you don’t really know me anymore.

You’ve started sending me these notes about something called “AmazonLocal.” Apparently, they are daily deals that LivingSocial buys, then hands off to you to distribute. Because I’m not the only person you know well — you know lots and lots of people.

That’s cool. But these “AmazonLocal” thingies — they’re not for me.

You’ve sent me five so far. One of them was for a restaurant, which is fine, I guess. But I have a long list of restaurants I want to go to before I start going to random ones I’ve never heard of.

The other ones, though? I think maybe you thought they were going to somebody else. There was one for something called a “Brazilian Blowout.” And one for Pilates classes. And one for sewing classes. And today I got one for two “Brazilian Honey Waxes,” which I think do something different than a Brazilian Blowout. But I’m not sure.

And look. I’m secure in my manhood, and I’m not offended. And it will be easy for me to unsubscribe to these things, and I’ll do that just as soon as I’m done typing this.

I guess I’m just not sure why you sent me these in the first place. Why go ahead and make me feel just a tiny bit less good about our relationship? You certainly don’t need the money — you see $9 billion of that every three months. And if you did want to send me this stuff, all you’d have to do is ask.

But you didn’t.

And while I’m certainly going to keep buying lots and lots and lots of stuff from you, I might think twice before I open another one of your emails. What a bummer.

P.S.: If you do have leads on affordable three-bedroom apartments with outdoor space in a leafy block in Brooklyn, please holler, ASAP.


Unrelated: One of my all-time favorite advertising videos. May not be safe for work, but you should watch it anyway:

Also unrelated: Happy Birthday, Ben!

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work