When my father was ten-years-old, he went to my grandfather and asked him for ten dollars to buy a game. You might have heard of the type, cardboard playing space with cards and various plastic pieces. So much for the ancient history class. You probably weren’t interested in this fact at all. And I’d be right there with you, except for the fact that he just sold the very same game just the other day, on eBay, for three-hundred-fifty greenbacks. That’s quite the return on an investment. Now before you all run to your attics and look for old toys to sell, you should know I have two problems with all this. First, I think he should share his fortune with me and my grandfather, but this is of little consequence.
What really bugs me is that all the games I purchased when I was ten are on stupid floppy disks. No one is paying three-hundred bucks for floppy disks. These things have no use what so ever. At least the old CD’s, which will no longer run in today’s computers, make decent coasters or frisbee’s. Floppy’s aren’t worth a plugged nickel and I have a million of them. Because of the advancement in computers, there’s no way to even run these programs anymore. Oh, I found the ancient drive in my attic. I thought that might be worth something. Sadly, all I got from it, was to hear eBay laugh hysterically, and spit the listing back in my face.
So once again, I find my childhood isn’t worth anything. All my old stuff is crap. It’s worse now that I’m the father. My son came to me the other day and asked for a ten-spot to buy a sword. It’s close to Halloween so I figured it was for some sort of costume. Today I asked to see the sword. He went to his computer, opened up his mine game, and showed it to me from an inventory box. My son bought an imaginary sword, in an online game and paid ten of my real dollars for it. I thought it was bad when I paid for the data on a disk but at least I had the disk to call my own. For what it’s worth.
I then learned that this is the trend in gaming today. You can go to a website and buy all kinds of things, that you don’t really have. In fact, there is a whole virtual marketplace where invisible items can be bought and sold for real money. I can just imagine him in forty years with a grandchild in his knee. “I remember back in 2019, I bought a +10 sword of holy light.”
The kid would say, “Wow grandpa, can I see it?
“No, that account was deleted and the game company went bust in 2022.”
I tried to teach him the value of having something for his money. Oh, he had something, he insisted. He had a whole pile of cards with used codes on them. Now there’s a legacy for you. Can you imagine sitting in some lawyer’s office at the reading of that will. “And to Charles I leave my entire pile of old useless game cards.” The real sad thing is, if things keep going the way they are, John will probably leap from his chair and scream he was supposed to get those. But I digress
Of course, after talking further to my boy, I found out everyone buys stuff like this. In fact, in one game, my son told me about, you can get a Golden Frying Pan. I would consider this useless. I mean would you put a golden pan on the stove. Everything would stick to it, and a Teflon coating would lower the value. In the game, you hit people with it. Again, gold is a soft metal you would ruin the thing. But even though it doesn’t exist, it’s worth three thousand real, honest to goodness dollars. And folks call me crazy.
Billions of dollars are spent every day on absolutely nothing. Think about this, a coder creates a digital sword and decides what it can do. This might take him a day or two. He then charges ten bucks for it, hoping everybody wants one. Next, he sells a million copies of the data sword and is ten-million richer for a couple of days work.
Where do I sign up to get in on this? I mean I have lots of nothing that I don’t need. The only problem is the kids of today won’t pay for nothing nothing. They will only fork out the big bucks for electronic, online, nothing. I don’t have any electronic nothing. My son has electronic nothing, but he says he will never part with it. He just doesn’t have enough. In fact, he is thinking about getting a job so he can buy MORE electronic nothing.
I must admit, at first, this kind of thing was driving me crazy. Then I thought; When in virtual reality, do as virtuals do. I should learn how to sell nothing for big bucks. I even found a book on the stuff; An Adults Guide to Doing All the Things Your Kids All Ready Know How to Do third edition. The thing was amazing. Right from reading the first chapter I was being an idiot on social media, and creating memes no one could understand. I was so empowered that I started dissing my parents to my friends. It was wonderful.
Then I got to the chapter on buying and selling nothing. It was a little hard to understand and I had a few false starts. Like when I set up a garage sale with nothing on the racks and tables. It didn’t generate a lot of interest, and the few folks who did show up acted like I was nuts. After a bit more reading, I found you could only do this on the internet. So, I advertised my nothing on Craig’s List. I actually got a few sales, but I had to give refunds because I just couldn’t ship nothing fast enough.
Next, I tried one of those VR worlds and set up an avatar. Now I had a nobody to go with all my nothing. This is where I ran afoul of the system. It seems that to have a nobody in a non-existent world for selling nothing costs real money. They took a share of all the non-goods I sold, then charged me a fee for using their nowhere marketplace. No kidding!
And it got worse. I was hacked and somebody stole all of my nothing, leaving me with, well nothing. When I found out that the nothing I had, was worth less than nothing. So, the site was charging me something and I had nothing to sell. I contacted a programmer to see if he could create me some more nothing, but he charged so much for his nothing that even if I could sell it, I would make nothing. And if I can’t make anything, I should keep my nothing to myself.
Well, this ends the tale of my foray into the virtual. I hope you got something out of it. Don’t bother to thank me. It was Nothing!