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Spending Money But Saving Time With Amazon Prime

by Mike Levin SEO & Datamaster, 06/07/2012

On the subway on way to work. I’m so happy with how things are going at home. Adi has reached 18 months, and her little personality is shining through. Yep. She’s half me and half Rachel, and 100% herself. I’m enjoying getting to know her.

Three Frigidaire window air conditioners were put in yesterday, which I bought through Amazon, signing up for Amazon Prime, which triggered off a whole series of purchases. It’s insidious how free shipping greases the purchasing decision wheels. We also have a concierge at the new place, and these two factors combine for a perfect storm of Amazonian excess.

But that’s okay. Rachel and I are making good decisions shaping our little New York apartment to be Adi-toddler friendly. I’m having trouble giving up my favorite term Adi-baby. But we’ve got a toddler now, and that toddler has an all-terrain little red wagon to keep her stuffed animals in. I can feel her mind being shaped, and Amazon—and the net in general—gives an opportunity to shop for the very best mind-shaping toys in the world.

I’m taking the opportunity to do some apartment shaping too. Even living in Manhattan, the shopping capital of the world, doing errands during my lunch break is a pain in the ass, as is stopping for things on the way home. Just one errand, and my lunchtime is gone or I’m not getting home until 8:00 PM. Compare that to having a package waiting for you with the concierge when you get home! So even in NYC, Amazon is a godsend.

Anyway, this has me on a binge of finding the best-in-the-world products with the best-deals, shaping the kind of life and environment I want for my Adi-toddler’s early formative years. I saw the all-terrain-wagon in the street one day, googled it, amazoned it, and poof! Now Adi has a strong conceptual place to gather her stuffed animals into, hopefully providing a first example of the type of habit-forming thought patterns that will serve her well her entire life—places for things—booyah!

I’m also getting things to help Mommy and Daddy—in the form of a full-fledged postal mail-sorting desk—no, not the Restoration Hardware $3000 one, though I covet it. I chose, with Rachel’s approval, the quarter-the-price industrial equivalent. It’s not that we need to sit and sort mail, but rather that it’s an amazingly useful cubby hole-ridden space that’s perfect for papers, craft items, and a whole host of other little things you want to quickly put away without deep-sixing into the abyss of behind a closed cabinet or drawer. Can’t wait for it to arrive.

I’m also digging deep into that fooling-myself to-do list, actually checking items off! There was a burnt out fluorescent light in my clothes closet that has taken me forever to replace because hardware stores never have the bulb… Amazon POOF! Maintenance shopping-runs that makes us blow part of our weekends on CostCo: diapers, cat food, dog food—POOF, POOF, POOF! It’s free shipping almost every time, so it doesn’t matter if you batch up your items into single orders, or just do one-click purchases as you think of them.

I’ve spent the past seven or eight years intellectually thinking about how Amazon changes everything—how long-tail shopping is better than the perusing shelves in the physical-world—even in Manhattan! But I’ve been in doorman/concierge-less apartments for most of that time. I just didn’t “get it”. But now I have a concierge, and my air conditioner purchase made joining Amazon Prime worth it—much the same way a zoo membership becomes worth it after the second visit in the same year. And it’s making a lot of difference for the better—because even more valuable than the money I’m spending is the time I’m saving, and get to spend with my family.