A Brooklyn man is on a crusade to thwart parcel poachers with a decidedly low-tech solution.
“Why leave your package on the stoop for the package pirate to scoop?” rhymes Bob James, 59, creator of the Bob Box, an all-wood contraption secured by lock and key, which he claims is ideal for any front yard or apartment building lobby.
Despite the spirited sales pitch, Big Apple residents aren’t biting. He has yet to sell a single Bob Box.
The quixotic James is undeterred that Bob Box gawkers that “stop and take pictures, say it’s a good idea, but they don’t call.”
“I’m chasing my tail, but it’s early in the game,” he says. “You look at anybody who’s successful. It took time.”
The Bedford-Stuyvesant native boasts his invention is a natural for the holiday season, especially in the wake of a disturbing report that some 90,000 packages a day are pilfered or vanish without a trace in New York City.
“The package pirates are out in droves. Especially this time of year. … This is the answer,” James says, admiring the decorated demo that sits outside his three-family brownstone.
There are no bells and whistles. The container looks like a cross between a podium, wood chipper and arcade game.
“I don’t promote these as a fine piece of furniture. They are functional. Like a garbage can.” James says.
The primitive poacher-proof box stands about 6-feet high, weighs about 125 pounds and can be chained to a fence.
Some of the negative feedback is that the box is an eyesore, and it is too expensive.
James defends the $199 price tag, explaining that each Bob Box costs him $85-$90 in materials (from Home Depot or Lowe’s) and construction takes him a day and a half.
The box is made out of plywood and pressure-treated lumber for the legs. James uses acrylic latex paint.
The former DJ, who gets the gift of gab from his 91-year-old dad KK, takes to the streets of Brooklyn with a bullhorn several times a week to hawk his Bob Box.
Three weeks ago, James even chained one of the anti-thievery devices to a light post at Remsen Street near Borough Hall as part of a guerrilla marketing campaign, The Brooklyn Paper reported.
That is until James was informed the Box violated the city’s administrative code and had to be moved.
The unrelenting retired city transit electrician and “graduate of YouTube University,” sprinkles his spiel with rhymes, a la Knicks legend Walt “Clyde” Frazier.
Says James: “Delivery is free. Assembly free. The only thing you lose are the package pirate blues,” and “Keep your deliveries safe. Keep them dry. Keep them away from thievin’ eyes!”
James says his city pension means he can afford to be patient with his patent pending invention.
“Supply and demand will be a good problem. I have three ready to go!” he says defiantly.
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