Update: Classes no longer require sign-in.
After stepping down as Amazon’s CEO, I was eager – albeit nervous – to start on the next chapter of my life. You may have noticed I said the word “chapter” because I love to read books, especially those on sale from local bookstores, not unlike those my company mercilessly shut down or acquired through ruthless monopolistic pressure.
One such text that caught my attention was Henry David Thoreau’s Walden. I couldn’t wait to get lost in the world of that quaint, little cabin on the cover. So on one particularly rainy day, I poured myself a warm cup of Soylent, got under my polar bear skin covers, and ordered my army of virtual assistants to purchase the deed to the historic Walden property.
When I first arrived at Walden, I was soon impressed by the staggering uniqueness of nature – each blade of grass, each plump berry I picked was truly one of a kind. Every flitting bird, every gnarled tree, every small insect was a veritable miracle of creation, the peculiar result of millennia of happenstance.
I was struck with an epiphany: the natural world is rife with inefficient, high-variant supply chains! So I quickly brought in a team to tear down and replace the diverse local ecosystem with mass-produced flowers and crops that fit rigid optimum product specifications. Soon we will be delivering our new, uniform version of nature, Amazon Life, to loyal Prime customers everywhere. Ah, to feel so connected and in tune with the earth… My soul is nourished by the lifeblood that runs through the deep roots of this storied and, let’s face it, sickeningly unique woodland!
Each day, after having an Amazon Warehouse robot shave my smooth body by a babbling brook, I would continue connecting with nature by meditating in the woods. By simply observing what surrounded me – like the warm glow of sunshine or the majestic sight of a sparrow taking flight – I understood the importance of paying attention to the moment. Yet because of my primitive human sensory processing, I became distraught: there were so many things I could possibly miss observing every second. So I ordered some ketamine-microdosing “Idea Engineers” to invent Amazon Serenity, Amazon’s first mindfulness device. Amazon Serenity uses infrared sensors and machine learning algorithms to identify each observable phenomenon at any given moment to make your meditation as effortless and efficient as possible. For instance, when a tree branch sways, the app says “WIND”; a quick movement amongst the sky and it reads “BIRD”; one of your many overworked servants hobbles by and you will see “EXPLOITABLE WRETCH.”
At Walden, I’ve learned the true reward of one’s manual labor, to subsist on the literal crops you yourself have sown, and how correct it feels to be in harmony with the land. How could one measure such natural and simple pleasures in life?
I’ll tell you! By constructing an equation that breaks down each simple pleasure into quantifiable utility units (QUUs). It was evident that I could easily maximize the overall utility generated by accomplishing daily tasks through hiring local migrant workers to replicate this work tenfold. Now, I can enjoy the fruits of my hard labor thousands of times a day at a compounding scale! Because I was operating deep in the forest, there was little surrounding competition, meaning I was able to drive down wages and not have to worry about silly labor laws like providing bathrooms or smoke alarms. I’m just glad I could improve another local community through Amazon’s culture of innovation.
Alas, eventually I left the woods for as good a reason as I went there. To begin anew, to refill the well of life that resides within each of our souls, and to escape the raging fire that somehow no one saw coming at the Amazon Life warehouse. The fire spread to the cabin and unfortunately, the once crystal clear Walden pond was now so full of fecal matter from the overworked employees that our attempt to use its water to extinguish the fire only made it grow larger, engulfing the surrounding woodlands in a spiralling shit inferno.
Like Thoreau, I had retired to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and most importantly figure out more ways to increase profit margins for my company that still I only own over $150 billion in stock in. And like Thoreau, Walden will never be the same after my stay.
Currently listening to Aiko el grupo, a fun indie pop band from Spain. Watching Invincible (on Amazon Prime…thanks Bezos!) and rewatching Frisky Dingo (now on HBO Max), one of my favorite animated comedies of all time despite the short run.