Brown like the color of excrement
Instapundit is writing about Amazon Prime shipping.
I'm usually able to select FREE Super Saver Shipping (most of our orders are > $25) and find they rarely take the extra 3-5 days Amazon warns. Depending on the popularity of the item I've even had stuff show up as quickly as if I'd chosen express shipping. And the FREE Super Saver Shipping is usually a USPS delivery. Which is good, since UPS can rot in hell. If I need 2-day shipping, I'll gladly pay a reputable company for the work.
Amazon gave us a free trial membership for Amazon Prime and I canceled after a month when all deliveries came by UPS. I wish mail order companies were more upfront about who they ship with, because if I know the only way they'll ship is UPS I shop somewhere else or do without.
I have a similar policy with Ticketmaster--who can also rot in hell. You tell me my top ten bands of all time are playing together and I can have a front row seat if I simply call Ticketmaster and I'll stay home picking weeds with tweezers.
Give me the option of free UPS for tomorrow or $10 FedEx for next week, and I'm going with FedEx. At some point FedEx would become prohibitively expensive, but that doesn't mean I'm shipping with UPS. Occasionally a UPS shipment slips through and it almost always results in us calling their 1-800-customerssux line and yelling. Typical is an incident from a couple months ago when we were waiting for a package. Watching the UPS tracking information, we saw it had been delivered. Get home and there's no package and no notice on the door that delivery was attempted. We call UPS and they state that once the system shows delivery was made, it is no longer UPS's concern. They wash their hands of the whole thing and the customer has to work it out with the merchant. Luckily, the package was delivered first thing the next day because, apparently, the driver lied about it being delivered so he could go home.
Not the worst. That might be the time a few years back. This was a bizarre incident when multiple deliveries were expected and, to keep it short, deliveries that required a signature were thrown at the door (that's my explanation for why the box was so dented) and packages that did not require a signature the driver refused to deliver because he insisted he needed a signature. In the end, someone from the UPS center hand-delivered a few of the packages on her way home from work. Another couple hundred dollars worth of deliveries were refused and canceled as I told the driver to go to hell when he attempted one last delivery.
These might be extreme cases, but almost every delivery we've ever had from UPS has involved some level of drama. Plus the fact they have no problem walking into an unlocked door to drop off a package--I don't care if it is the garage, stay the hell out of my house. Then there are the times the UPS driver will hide the package outside and it isn't found until days later. These are not apocryphal stories, they've happened to us and to our friends. You might be reading this and thinking "Geez, bill, I've never had any problems." Then I guess your anecdotal evidence trumps my anecdotal evidence. Great, whatever works for you in your cotton candy scented world with the marshmallow clouds. Just consider this a warning never to send UPS to our doorstep.