Virtuality Crime

‘Can I have a Wowtastic meal deal?’ I asked, clutching a crumpled voucher in my outstretched pseudopodium. I was a shape-shifter, I was a polymorph! I was on a bit of a high! I was also a seasoned street philosopher, if I may say so myself. I’ve been hanging around the malls and pedestrianised shopping precincts for many years now, biding my time, puzzling over the big questions, and now I felt that I’d reached a certain level of understanding – a transcendental level of understanding, you could say. ‘What are you doing here?’ I asked myself sharply, trying to catch myself out. ‘How would I know?’ I answered back smartly, as quick as a whip. The simulator would have to get up pretty early in the morning to catch me out, I grinned, full of the awareness of my own near omniscience. ‘Supposing you were famous but no one knew you?’ I asked, testing myself to see if I was as good as I thought I was. ‘Suppose you wanted to buy something but you didn’t know what?’ My mind was jumping like a cricket – it was jumping like a big fat brown cricket in a meadow full of long, long grass in the full heat of the summertime. ‘Are demons real?’ I wondered, ‘can they possess you and make you come out with stuff that doesn’t make any sense at all? ‘Keep smiling’, I told myself, ‘it’s important not to know to let them know that they have you spooked’. I recently learned that there was such a thing as ‘virtuality crime’ – crimes committed in the virtual realm which can never be traced back to you; crimes which break no laws and which have no appreciable impact on the real world. A whole new dimension of crime and criminality, hitherto unmentioned in the statute books! No victims, you see – how can you be held accountable when there are no victims and you yourself are no more than fast-fading pattern of digital impulses? Can one ghost harm another? Can a person be sentenced in a court of law for misdemeanours committed in a dream? Someone somewhere will one day invent the ultimate product and at one stroke capitalism itself will become redundant. I knew this as well as the next man did but if you asked me to explain it I couldn’t! The words just wouldn’t come – I just stood there, grinning like a fool. Someone somewhere will inadvertently invent the ultimate product and this will spell the death knell for consumerism as we know it. Consumerism as we know it. ‘What’s your purpose in life?’ I asked myself out of the blue, trying to catch myself out again. This time I succeeded – ‘Leave me alone, will you?’ I whined, ‘can’t you see that I’m having a bad day?’ I had learned everything I needed to learn on the street you see – that’s the only education that counts in my book! I had learned everything I needed to know in the shopping malls of my own diseased imagination. I’m a veteran at this stage. I’m a seasoned veteran of the Dream Wars – I’ve been around the block so many times that it’s all become a bit of a blur, a bit of a blur, a bit of a blur. I tried to explain myself but the words wouldn’t come. They just wouldn’t come. I haunt myself relentlessly, I never give myself a break. Late at night you can see me sitting there in some anonymous fast food outlet, my head down, eating my meal, struggling to come to terms with the big questions, struggling to come to terms with the enormous absurdity of my own existence. Life took one fork in the road and I took another and having gone so far I feel obliged to continue in my folly! ‘Can I have a Wowtastic meal deal?’ I pipe up enthusiastically, clutching an out-of-date voucher tightly in my outstretched pseudopodium. I am a shape-shifter, I am a polymorph! I am The Undisputed Lord of All I Survey! Whatever I think of comes into immediate phantom existence and I always end up regretting it…






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