I ordered something last week from North Carolina. I know, I know. Hold all you jokes about East Bumpkinville. The truth of the matter is that it's a lot cheaper to buy stuff in East Bumpkinville and have it shipped here to America than it is to buy the stuff here in the first place. I imagine it's because the East Bumpkinvillians don't have to worry about dental, but I don't rightly know, having never set foot there after seeing Deliverance.
On top of the already fantastic prices that can be had by shopping online in North Carolina, I managed to get this shipment of goods at half price, thanks to El Presidente. Yup, I got stuff on a 50% off "Obama's first tax increase" clearance sale being held to clear out stuff that won't be profittable once a 100% tax is added onto it in order to fund socialized healthcare for minors, which was an Obama campaign promise (and signed into law in early February).
Well, these North Carolina folks, they don't cotton so much to those new-fangled aero-planes, so they shipped me my goods via diesel big rig. UPS Ground, baby.
And there is almost nothing more frustrating than tracking a shipment that's going UPS Ground. I say "almost" because there is one firm that manages to out-frustrate UPS, and that would be the socialized shipping industry of the US Postal Service. There is nothing broken out there that a good dose of gubment can't make worse, and package tracking at USPS is almost a cruel joke. If I can sum up the government's philosophy with respect to package tracking, I would say it is this: we will acknowledge that someone has claimed to have given us a package to deliver, though we will not confirm having received it, and we will announce the successful delivery of the package that we may or may not have received, but what happens in between should really be left up to us professionals and is none of you bidness. Feel free to file a Freedom of Information Act request if you like to know more about the inner workings of this finely tuned machine.
And you want to leave these guys in charge of the health care of your childrens.
The frustrating thing about tracking packages shipping via UPS ground isn't the utter incompetence of UPS. UPS actually seems quite competent. They get the package to you right when the predict they will, and ground shipping is dirt cheap. But fast it is not, and, as you watch your package crawl across the continent, you wonder if it is intentionally needlessly slow in order to assure a good market for 2nd day air shipment. My package was picked up from the shipper at 6:18pm on the 5th. Having passed through four trucks already, it it now parked in Earth City, MO, where it has been sitting for 24 hours a mere 780 miles from its origin.
Why? Because UPS Ground doesn't move packages on the weekend. And on top of that, it is scheduled to take 4 more days (or three working days) to traverse the remaining 880 miles to my house because, I imagine, the traffic on I-70 across Kansas is just a nightmare at this time of year.