TV for logistics geeks

Nancy Anderson
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Thanks to UPS, the average American now knows how to say "logistics." And maybe they even have an idea of what logistics is about, at least at the broad level, from watching those TV commercials. But those commercials barely scratch the surface when it comes to giving people a complete understanding of the various businesses, activities and processes that together make up the logistics industry.

Chances are you still have to explain your job in logistics to your unaware friends. Or maybe they think the subject is dry as dust. You should send them over to the History Channel, where they will learn otherwise.

One of the History Channel's longest running regular series is "Modern Marvels." This series goes deep inside all sorts of things that make our modern world what it is, from Hoover Dam to helicopters and snack foods to supertankers. As you might expect, given the series' broad scope, logistics frequently makes an appearance as a subject for exploration.

This past February, for instance, the series looked at the American trucking industry, examining everything from the Ford F-150 pickup to long-haul truckers racing to set up a country superstar's next concert - a complex logistics exercise if ever there was one. The episode even introduced viewers to a fellow who operates a truck that cleans out portable toilets.

Ever wonder how bubble wrap is made? The episode on packaging, another crucial component of the shipping business, touched on that, along with how the country's original logistics enterprise, the Army Transportation Command, packs and ships military equipment and supplies and how NASA packaged a delicate robot for a trip into orbit.

As infrastructure is a key element of logistics, logistics geeks should also appreciate the many episodes devoted to engineering wonders like bridges as well as shows devoted to things like the world's most dangerous roads.

In short, if it deals with packing and transporting items from point A to point B, Modern Marvels has probably touched on it - and probably will again. The show's website includes a complete episode guide, listings for future airings of episodes, and a video gallery with both full episodes of past shows and snippets organized around themes. As if to underscore the logistics-friendly content here, the site's main sponsor is CSX.

Interested in working at CSX, or at a packaging firm, or a trucking company? LogisticsJobSite is the place to look.

By Sandy Smith Sandy Smith is a veteran freelance writer, editor and public relations professional who lives in Philadelphia. Besides blogging for, he has written for numerous publications and websites, would be happy to do your resume, and is himself actively seeking career opportunities on Nexxt. Check out his LinkedIn profile and read his other posts on

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