A weekly commentary by CBS News correspondent Andy Rooney.
Everyone likes to open a package, but we've carried packaging too far. It's never more apparent than at Christmas.
It's OK to wrap something and put it in a box, but then is it really necessary to put the wrapped box in a box and wrap that?
To illustrate my point I'm going to do something I don't like to do - reveal to a member of the family what I'm giving him for Christmas.
I bought a new camera in New York for Brian and had it sent to Connecticut to avoid the sales tax. Here's the box the way it came. You need some kind of tool. I keep a pen-knife in the drawer. I admire men who keep pocketknives in their pockets but I'm not one of them.
It's fragile so they packed it in this damn stuff. You know how this is - one of the worst inventions of the 20th Century. I guess it's so the delivery men can throw the packages without breaking them.
It's impossible to unpack without getting this stuff all over you and everywhere else in the room. Do this. I hate to open this because I'm going to have to pack it up again and give to Brian. But anyway, get inside and of course it's already packed in it's own box. And you got to get into that.
There's the directions: DO NOT OPEN THIS CAMERA UNTIL YOU'VE READ ALL THESE DIRECTIONS.
And all the wires and the batteries and the stuff, all these things. Everything plugs into something, and anything that plugs into this, won't plug into anything else. Of course, it's packed in it's own foam stuff. Here's the camera down here another foam thing that it's in. Like mining for gold. Here it is. This is what they sent. And this what they sent it in. Look at the comparison.
I mean was all that packaging really necessary? It's a very nice little camera. Wait a minute! This isn't what I ordered!
Copyright 2002 CBS. All rights reserved.