Two Weird Ways To Make Money

moneyMoney isn’t everything, but it sure as hell is ahead of whatever’s in second place.  I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor — guess which one I prefer.  To that end, here are two weird ways to make a ton of money out of the New Economy.  The first one takes a lot of skill, but the second one just takes a little imagination and a lot of chutzpah.

Video Games — Of course, there are the traditional ways to earn money with video games — testing them, entering tournaments etc., etc. — but there’s also this semi-legit marketplace out there.  I heard about it from a World of Warcraft addict.  What he does is play World of Warcraft, like, all the time.  He builds different characters, adds powers and weapons, collects piles of Warcraft gold and like that.  (I’m not a player, so I don’t really know what’s involved.)  Anyway, once he advances to the upper game levels, he sells all his virtual stuff to other gamers (who maybe aren’t as good as he is, or just don’t want to put in the hours) so they can play at the higher levels.  The beauty is he gets paid serious money for this — real money.  Apparently, there’s a huge demand for this sort of thing and, according to my buddy, it works with most video games.  But think about it!  There are people in this world who are actually paying other people to play games for them.  Personally, I kinda think this defeats the whole purpose, but who am I to judge?

Selling Useless Crap on the Internet — These aren’t scams.  These are real products, available on the Internet, and people have paid real money for them.  Things like UFO Detectors, DVD Rewinders and Dehydrated Water (just add water.)  There’s also Rocky Mountain Morning Air, Ghosts In A Bottle, Unicorn Farts and Leprechaun Kisses.  More than a few people are selling dirt — by the spoonful.  There was a guy who took a photograph, turned it into a million pixels, sold the pixels for a dollar each and — yes — he literally earned a million dollars.  There was another guy, in Canada, who took an ordinary red paper clip and starting trading it online.   Eventually, he ended up with a three bedroom house! But my very favourite is Nothing.  That’s right : you can buy a little plastic bag full of Nothing on the Internet for (I think) $4.95 plus shipping and handling.  P. T. Barnum was right.

These are only two examples of what is going on in the New Economy, but in our brave new world, it looks to me as if your financial future is  limited only by your imagination.


Pokemon Go — Everybody Wins

PikachuPokemon Go has just been released in Canada (shows you what kinda second tier country we are). Everybody’s jumped ship to go hunt for the little bastard and his buddies and now there’s nobody left to talk to.  Not that the conversation has been up to much these days, what with Taylor Swift feuding with Kanye and Kim — again, Russian athletes getting caught for doping — again — and some Playboy bunny being publically shamed for publically shaming some other woman earlier in the week.  Plus ça change!

(To be fair, Dani Mathers, the original shamer, apologized —  not to the woman she made fun of — the shamee — but to the Internet in general.  Then she offered some lame ass “sorry-I’m-a-techno-idiot” excuse for posting the picture and making her juvenile joke.  Oddly, she never mentioned the teeny-tiny fact that she’d just taken a naked photograph of a stranger — without permission.  Personally, I thought there were laws against such things but in the brave new world of who’s on the shaming carousel, I’m pretty certain law enforcement has thrown up its hands in disgust.)

Anyway, enough about shaming.

I’m a huge fan of this Pokemon Go phenom and in my opinion the Pokemon people are doing humanity a great service.

One — Pokemoners (Pokemonites?) (Pokemonians?) are vertical and moving.  This is a good thing.  Video games have a tendency to weaken the mind and widen the backside, so, getting hordes of pale people out of their basement ass grooves has got to be a positive thing.  This might not be a lot of exercise but … it’s better than what we had.  Honestly, some of the folks I’ve seen stumbling around staring at their phones look as if they haven’t bestirred themselves since the original video game came out in 1995.

Two — A strange thing happens when gamers are unleashed from their consoles and their television sets — they act like real people.  I’ve seen people — this is true — talking to each other.  They use hand gestures, body language and facial expressions.  I’ve seen them flirt, cavort and even discuss.  Obviously, it’s all about which little fellow they found, didn’t find or are looking for but, still, it’s a start.

And finally:

Three — As long as the Pokemon hunt is on, there is a whole pile of  Internet personalities who just aren’t there — they’re previously engaged.  I’m not one of these “get-a-life” people. Honestly, if you want to spend your time playing with imaginary creatures that’s your business and who am I to judge?  (After all. I write fiction, for God’s sake!)  However, it doesn’t bother me a bit that I’ve noticed the number of nasty, gossipy, disjointed and just plain idiotic comments on the Internet have decreased since Pokemon Go has hove up on the horizon.  So, it looks like we all win.  Just sayin’!