Known Johnson

June 4, 2008

What can brown do for you?

Filed under: General — Tom @ 11:56 am

It is no secret that I am impatient. Tom waits for no man, or thing, whatever, especially music, especially when it comes to Tuesday, which is release-day. When Monday rolls around, I begin checking my email and Amazon to see if whatever I’ve preordered has shipped, and get anxious when things that were ordered have not shipped, especially when they’re limited-edition items. This week is no different – Aimee Mann released Smilers in a limited edition and dammit, I am meant to have it. But Amazon is holding on to it, and, as I read, it’s actually quite limited, so what did I do? I panicked. I went and bought a copy locally on the way home last night. And today I feel better – Amazon is still holding on to that copy, if they even have one, which raises the damned question, what is the point of pre-ordering limited edition items if they’re not going to put me in a queue to guarantee that I’m going to get something I ORDERED THE DAY IT BECAME AVAILABLE?! Surely if I am not to get a copy, the guy who happened to order it just a few days ago wouldn’t, right? That’s not how it works, as I found out last year with Porcupine Tree’s Fear of a Blank Planet the preorder for which went exactly opposite of the way it should have – early adopters got screwed while later orderers got the very, very few copies the world was alloted. Me? I spent three months searching for that thing, finally finding one in Australia.

That brings me to something basically different. I also ordered this week’s release of Opeth’s latest, Watershed, an album title that always starts, in my mind, sounding like “Water Buffalo.” There is no reason for this, it’s just how my brain works. That is not the point here, however. Being impatient, I checked my email yesterday and saw it shipped. I didn’t check the UPS tracking number until today, however, but when I did, I was prompted to pen the following in an email to Amazon:

In checking the shipping status for my order for Opeth’s Watershed, I find that it has traveled back in time a year and a half and has been delivered to DOUG in Houston, Texas. As amazing as this is, it is not satisfactory. While I appreciate the delivery techniques of UPS – pre-delivering an item that did not exist in Dec. 2006 – I would like some assurance that *I* will indeed actually receive the item in question. I do applaud them for defying the very laws of physics, and hope they report on their ability to warp the space/time continuum to deliver items through time-travel.

(details excluded for online safety, naturally)

It appears that my order was given an old tracking number, one used to deliver something to DOUG in the MAIL ROOM in Houston in early Dec., 2006. How this could happen is beyond my knowledge – perhaps I could use some advanced UPS technology to find out. I just hope the actual package is coming to me and has the right info on it. Will I ever even find out? It’s possible only DOUG may know at this point.



DOUG sorts packages. Picking one up, Doug notices his name and tentatively opens it. Looking confused, he grimaces, then anger grows on his face.

What, again? I got this back in Dec. 2006!


Without knowing it, Doug has performed a noble duty, bookending a process start 18 months ago when UPS opened a tear in the fabric of time. The time loop has closed, and all is righted with the universe.



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