January 30, 2006
News & Opinion: Long Beach Harbor
This past week I went to speak at an American Booksellers Association school on the subject of outside sales. This post is not about that. It is about the van ride to the hotel from LAX. The event was held at the Long Beach Hilton. I took a Shared Van to the hotel and the van had a couple of people to drop off before me. We came into Long Beach from the South going over a bridge. The ride over the bridge was really mind boggling. From the top of the bridge, where we sat for awhile, you could look in all directions and see nothing but shipping containers being moved around. Sacks five and six high sitting on the ground. Multiple trains moving North and East with containers stacked two high. Trucks looking like ants all over the place moving the containers. Cranes everywhere you looked. Our local newspaper had a series of articles about globalization last year with a mind boggling picture from Hong Kong or some such place with shipping containers everywhere, but to see it live with my own eyes was really amazing. Anybody who thinks that their business, their livelihood will not be affected by the massive amounts of goods coming into the country, might be interested in some swamp land I own in Florida. Coming this spring from Princeton University Press is a book I really liked called The Box which is the story of the way we have moved freight coming into our country for the last 100 years and how the shipping container, i.e. The Box changed the world.