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Before Blasting Off, Bezos Checks in With Wendell Berry

AMAZON FOUNDER JEFF BEZOS arrived at writer Wendell Berry’s home in Kentucky the same way he arrives anywhere on earth: by drone, covered in cardboard. When he stepped out of the large box, the two men shook hands and exchanged gifts. Bezos gave Berry a single octopus tentacle wrapped in burlap. Berry offered Bezos a gooseberry coated in local honey. Both quietly hoped the exchange was a step forward for modern masculinity. It wasn’t.

Bezos: This is a fabulous berry, Wendell. Do you live off the food you farm? Or book sales?

Berry: Well, tax-evading corporate conglomerates have made it harder for authors to earn a sustainable living, but I’m happy with my lifestyle.

Bezos: So, you have other investments?

Berry: I invest in sequoias and in the two inches of humus that will build under the trees every thousand years.

Bezos: I LOVE hummus. But I’m not familiar with Sequoia. Has their stock gone public?

Berry: They are trees. Very old trees.

Bezos: Oh.

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