Have you heard of Amazon Dash?

Do you ever have those days when you realize you have no more toilet paper? You have just used the last piece and you look in the hall closet and find out you dropped the ball? The next option is to use facial tissue, but you pull one out and find out it is the last one too. You do not have time to go to the store until late that night, and that is the last thing you want to do at the end of a long day.

Enter Amazon Dash.

Imagine having a button near where you stock up on toilet paper, facial tissue, trash bags, diapers (the list goes on). You see that you are almost out, and with a click of the button Amazon will send you refills right away. You do not have to get online and place a new order. The click of the button does all the work for you.

There are currently 18 buttons for different brands. The cost of each button is $5, and are only available for Amazon Prime members. An excerpt for how it works from Amazon.com:

“Amazon Dash Button is simple to set up. Use the Amazon app on your smartphone to easily connect to your home Wi-Fi and select the product you want to reorder with Dash Button. Once connected, a single press automatically places your order. Amazon sends an order alert to your phone, so it’s easy to cancel if you change your mind. Unless you elect otherwise, Dash Button responds only to your first press until your order is delivered.”

Seems easy, and the future of how consumers might purchase everyday items such as shampoo, detergent, toilet paper — really anything that you get the same of every time. Only thing that randomly comes to me — kids that find the button and have a little fun. You might just have a truck load of toilet paper.

Is hotel Wi-Fi just air?

I was watching Modern Family a few weeks ago, and Ed O’Neill said something to the effect of, “Wi-FI: you are just paying for air.” It really got me thinking. We were recently staying in a hotel, and they charged a $9.95 fee per night for Wi-Fi. Which is actually a fairly normal amount of money for a hotel to charge, but why? You are already paying enough to stay in the hotel, plus taxes, why not offer hotel Internet Wi-Fi for free?

Think about it. You get free shampoo, conditioner, soap, water, heat, electricity. Okay well it is not free, it is part of the rate you pay for the room, but because it does not show as a charge on your bill you think of it as free. I would almost prefer my Internet Wi-Fi just be part of my room rate, rather than have to pay for it on top of my daily rate. Why? Well, unless I have to do work, I do whatever I can on my iPhone because I am cheap and do not want to pay the same amount for my hotel Internet for four nights of use with that I would for pay for a whole month of Internet at home.

Hotels must make shit-tons of money off their guests through daily Internet charges. Yet, should they? Internet should now be seen in the same way as electricity. We do not even think about whether turning on the lights will cost us more for our stay. If we did, would some of us sit in the dark? Why do we think differently about Internet? Or, does it all have to do with money and how much hotels can make off their guests?

What do you think?

Addicted to Electricity

Yesterday I am running on the treadmill while Chris is riding the bike. I am 5.5 miles into my run and I start to shoot off the back. I realize that the lights in the garage go dark, and the tread is instantly slowing to a stop. The power went out. I go inside to see if it is just the garage or the rest of the house. It is the entire house. Chris starts to investigate if it is just our house or if others are affected. He called Portland General Electric. 60 customers had already called, and 240 were effected. In the five minutes it took to call the Electric company, 59 other individuals had already called. Amazing how fast we respond when something is taken from us.

I am dripping with sweat. I want to keep running, so I grab my phone and head outside to finish my run, hoping that when I come back it will be back on and we can proceed with our day. I come home and the house smells amazing with black beans, sausage, and eggs. I am curious how Chris made food, without the electricity. He said he lit the gas stove with a lighter, and presto, a yummy breakfast. I am still sopping wet with sweat, and want to take a shower, but do not want to use all the hot water. I begin to contemplate over breakfast what we can do today without electricity.

I tell Chris: “We could research the items on the list and just chill on the couch.” He says: “No electricity, no wi-fi.” Ugh. Bummer. I continue to mention different ideas. We could run errands, and go to the grocery, but we do not want to bring home cold items if the electricity does not come back on. We would also have to figure out how to manually open the garage door. So frustrating. Yet, it makes my mind wander.

We take so many creature comforts for granted. Electricity to power a zillion things: our computers, wi-fi, televisions, charge our phones, our refrigerators and stoves, hair dryers, air conditioning (a dream for our home), the list goes on. So I can definitely say to you today that I am addicted to electricity, and I need to appreciate it more. In the era of instant everything, we forget all that goes into getting it to our front door. It was an eye-opening reminder for me to not take it for granted.

So…I am going to show gratitude for electricity today. #thankyouelectricity