Thursday, January 25, 2018

Amazon delivery

Three packages were being tracked for delivery. Ping. Amazon tracking says one is in the mailbox and two are at the front door. I check the door. Nothing there.

I'm hoping all three are in the mailbox but I learned it's best to be pessimistic. If not, I'll have to go looking. Where would I start? My floor.

Within the short distance to the elevator I notice two packages in front of a neighbor's door. A black woman who knows me. We speak to each other. I hear her speaking behind her door. The packages are mine, and just bending down to read the labels makes me feel weird as if I'm snooping around someone else's bizwax. Do I knock on the door and tell her I'm taking my packages? Why?

Just take them. Leave her alone. There's no point in making her answer her door just to talk to me and bring this to her attention, from her point of view, for nothing.

Then I visualize her picking them up before I see them and opening them before reading the label and being confused and disappointed with wakame and bonito. I'm certain she'd have no idea what to do with them. I'm not certain she'd bring them to me.

Culture clash, right there. A black American presented with ordinary Japanese ingredients and nothing useful can happen. Not even imagined. And no point in discovering what these things are. It's likely she'd trash them, rather than admit she opened my packages. Because no one would know.

Oh man, I just now had a serious déjà vu thing happen like an intrusion from an alternate reality where she does return them and gets angry at me imagining otherwise in this reality.

Speaking of different cultures. Now I'd like to show something else. Change of subject.

This came through a group email today. Students studying Middle Egyptian hieroglyphs are presented with S placed in front of a word.

We put an S after a word to pluralize things and with an apostrophe to show possession. Egyptians wrote an S in front of a word to indicate causation. The word group caused something.

The emailer find this a charming example. He writes to the group: Note that Faulkner writes "caus." after the hieroglyphs and transliteration. He's pointing out that it's an S-causitive verb.

Me now: Ankh means life, as you know, a thing, and now it's a verb, and not only that, it's a verb now that causes something. I like this for its handwriting. I like seeing people's handwriting in hieroglyphics, as I like seeing people's handwriting in sign language. It's fascinating. And it's cute.

Faulkner is so smart. He sees that S-ankh means "revive dead" or "nourish, feed" or "perpetuate a name." And S-ankh-seated man means "sculptor." That's terribly intuitive. I'm impressed.


AllenS said...

So, did you take your packages?

Chip Ahoy said...


edutcher said...

Good thinking on letting her know.

She could have gone all Skippy Gates on you.

Or something.

Amartel said...

One of my neighbors came over the other night and said she had tracked a package and it had been delivered by mistake to me. I've been busy so I had just piled up deliveries and not checked them. She was right! I had one of her packages and forked it over immediately, of course. She knew I had it because the tracking website for that delivery service had a photo of the delivery and the photo included my doormat, which is distinctive (and no, it does not say "fuck off" or anything like that) which is how my neighbor knew I had it. We laughed about how intrusive overbearing technology can sometimes actually help consumers. Next thing they'll put bodycams on the delivery guys. Or more likely the delivery guy will be a delivery robot drone.

chickelit said...
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chickelit said...

So, an update on the vegan Swedes: They loved my mango salsa with tortilla chips as an appetizer -- they were so hungry they nearly spoiled their appetites.

We made faux-hitos -- all the fixin's but the meat. Meanwhile, the pescatarians got fish tacos. Queso fresco all around. Fresh avacado guac.

Did you know that you can make your own taco shells from soft corn tortillas? Just spritz them with a little olive oil (Trader Joe's sells it in cans), nuke them for 30 s or so to make them super floppy and bake them at 375 hanging from the metal rack wires for 12 m. Mmm, mmm, mmm as Oprah used to say.