I was looking for a book by Jean Ziegler on Amazon.it, and I came to this search page, in which there is a carpet in tenth place. Then I got curious to see what Amazon proposes for carpets, so I typed “carpet” as search keyword; then I narrowed the results to the “Home & Garden” category and ordered them by descending price. Now, at the top of the page is a “Isfahan carpet silk warp 403×275“, proposed at the fair amount of ninety thousand two hundred sixteen euros. I got to know that Isfahan is a city in central Iran, and it is famous for the quality of the carpets: 750,000 is the average number of knots per square meter (if you prefer, this equals to 75 per square centimeter), and the quality of workmanship and pigments are excellent. So far nothing strange, therefore, although it is a bit hard to think of a rug worthy nearly one hundred thousand Euros, although it is formed by almost ten million knots.
The only associated object (under the heading “Customers who viewed this item also viewed” at the bottom of the page) to Isfahan carpet is a seemingly ordinary chef’s hat, generically referred to as “Toque Chef Works – Color : White” presented at the hyperbolic price of EUR 53,522.30. Click here if you do not believe me.
Makes little sense to think of a typo. And above all, who’s the one looking for a hundred thousand euro carpet and – shortly before or shortly after – a fifty thousand euro cook hat?
The hat comes from Chef Works, a California-based company produces clothing for catering professionals, but not otherwise present on Amazon. It is sold by Rinkit Ltd, which proposes on Amazon tens of thousands of articles of various kinds. Unfortunately it is not given a chance to sort products by price high to low (to see if there are other very expensive items), but within the window of Rinkit Ltd it is possible to perform a search by “toque”, thus obtaining these results. It turns out that even the black hat costs € 53,522.30, while logically the paper one is much cheaper (just over 55 euro). The other possibility is given by this item, apparently another white hat at the same price. It perhaps explains the mystery: with the hat you buy the cook, in defiance of any law prohibiting the trafficking in human beings.
From here on, we enter the assumptions domain. It is not so difficult, though, to think that once bought together, cook hat and carpet may be subject to reasonable discount; on the other hand, a certain panic imagine comes on our mind by thinking how much it might cost to clean the carpet where the chef with hat – black or white – may have clumsily knocked over a soup with saffron, caviar, truffles, mushrooms and Matsutake gold flakes.