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KARMA™: Available While Stocks Last
Kind of fictitious nonfiction? Fiction informed by true events? I don't know. You decide.
“It’s just not fair, you know?” said the man, with a heavy emphasis on the “fair”, as if that’s what the whole thing came down to. “I do my bit, you know? We compost.”
I was on a train headed north. Three seats in front of me, the man who said “fair” like it was a game changing word he’d just invented was talking to a girl that he seemed unable to let go of. They were a loud and obvious couple, barely interesting, and I found myself eavesdropping out of spite. They were talking about the warming planet. The word “fair” had been thrown around four or five times.
“Well it’s just bad karma, isn’t it?” said the girl, eliciting a loaded, affirmative sigh from her partner. “Bad, bad people are doing this, like that’s what makes it so frustrating. That it’s like actual people.”
“Yeah. Some bad karma for them for sure.”
The young couple paused a moment. And in the self-righteous silence, they seemed very pleased with themselves for condemning Big Oil execs to “bad karma”, and the conversation moved along. They started talking about uni courses and moving out of home and all the regular bullshit loud, obvious couples talk about on trains. And then they got off.
I have only a very basic understanding of Karma, so I googled it. Past Wikipedia entries, past “Instant Karma lmao!!!” compilation videos, past earnest blogs and self-actualised websites, I found the following advertisement.
It seemed strange and phoney at first, but it grew on me.
KARMA™ changed my life in three non-refundable cash deposits. Let it change yours too.
(This is a sponsored post)
Are you suffering at the hands of unfairness and injustice? Is your moral goodness drowned out and lost in a sea of bad people doing bad things and getting away with it? Do you deserve a reward for your self-sacrificing, altruistic, virtuous little life? Are you a nice guy that’s tired of finishing last?
Well! Look NO FURTHER! KARMA™ has been approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (we are legally bound to say that it took four attempts to gain this approval), and is READY to ROLL!
For too long have we had to suffer, unfairly, at the hands of other people. For too long have we been defenceless, unfairly, against the tyranny of injustice. But not longer. Now, we have a purchasable, tangible weapon against unfairness. Now, we have KARMA™. And it’s only three $99.95 cash instalments away from making your life BETTER!
You may have heard about “karmic balance”; the ancient notion that the universe is held in perfect harmony between good and evil and right and wrong. Well, it wasn’t easy, but our nerds in the lab have taken that philosophical concept, squeezed it out of ancient texts, somewhat bastardised and bottled it, before finally distilling it into a concentrated aerosol spray. And now, for the low, low price of $399.95 (Prices may be written in a different format or marginally increase the longer you spend reading this advertisement), it can be yours in just four interest-free cash payments!
Manufacturing has been delayed, so here is an artist’s impression of our product.
Our artist isn’t very good and neither are his impressions.
What is it?
The exact science of the whole thing is very complicated. “Karma” has existed for thousands of years, appearing first in ancient Indian religious texts, with the philosophical concept evolving and spreading across civilisations for thousands of years. In Hinduism and Buddhism, Karma connotes the sum of a person's actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences; though the word has been kinda hijacked by white people and is now used liberally in the titles of YouTube compilation videos and earnest blogs.
The kind of Karma that we’ve bottled is of the more basic, westernised (read: thrown around casually in conversations on trains) variety. It’s no doubt still difficult to define - and even harder to distill into a concentrated aerosol spray, believe us - but words and phrases that might come close include: recompense, retribution, just deserts, or a dose of one’s own medicine. It’s all about comeuppance, really. Justin Timberlake’s 2006 pop hit, ‘What Goes Around...Comes Around’ sums it up pretty well. Alicia Keys’ ‘Karma’ is pretty good too. Culture Club’s ‘Karma Chameleon’ is a bit further away, but gosh it’s a tune.
Karma is, essentially, as it is understood today, and how we mean to use it, the notion of basic causality. Good or bad fortunes are considered to be determined by one’s actions. Good actions are rewarded and bad actions are punished and so on and so forth. You get it.
And so, Wowzer! Golly gosh! HOLY FUCK!! Isn’t it phenomenal that all of that, all those words and songs and ancient philosophical concepts, have been condensed and commodified and made available for purchase (while stocks last) for just $450!!! How good is capitalism?
How does it work?
Before paying five $99.95 cash deposits for something, you’re probably going to want to know how it works. Well, once payment is received, you will get the spray and an accompanying certificate of authenticity in the post. Expect a creamy, viscose emerald liquid in a bottle the size of a box of tic tacs. Functionally it is similar to a nasal spray - in that you shoot it up your nose. The product will then protect you from injustice and may even also clear (we’re legally required to say that it may also, more likely, congest) your sinuses. You should only use a double dose when you really need to be protected from an injustice, like on election days. (Side effects of a double dose may include nose bleeds, a semi-permanent loss of cognitive function, and a complete inability to blink for several hours).
The spray then works in a somewhat mysterious way - though it is definitely worth the $650 price tag (Just want to be clear that that’s USD). It doesn’t so much precipitate an “eye for an eye”, Old Testament sense of exact justice, as that would be extraordinarily specific and difficult. The cosmic force of Karma is very busy and doesn’t always have time to carry the one! It’s more the vibe of the thing. You know? If you are generally good, then applying the spray will mean you are rewarded with good spirits, some light good favour, and maybe even a teency bit of good luck; though these things are not legal guarantees and you’ll really have to go looking for them. If you are generally bad, self-interested or in climate change denial (as if this is a legitimate position to assume), well, you will just go on living your life normally but with a kind of stuffy nose. Not bad for $700, hey?
So, yes, it’s a little vague. And look, no one’s saying that $849.95 isn’t a lot of money, even split across eight low-interest cash instalments. But trust us, it works. Karma is all around! And it’s working just fine, right? Because the world we live in is beautiful and peaceful and fair, right? There must be some ephemeral, omnipotent being or cosmic force looking after us because like hey, woah, there’s just fairness and justice all over the place!
Consider how much Karma we’ve got all up in our nation. Our highest profile commercial broadcasters are ethical, and nice, and decent, aren’t they? Electedpoliticians, too. I can’t imagine we lock up kids and genuine asylum seekers in inhumane offshore detention camps, even though it would be less expensive to resettle them in regional communities? And the media is doing a good job, hey? And the numbing, devastating inactivity of politicians on climate change, even in the face of protests from school children who will one day die fiery (or underwater) deaths at the hands of bad policy, would have nothing to do with the fact that both major parties are funded by crude oil companies. All that coal business will end soon, no doubt.
Then consider all the karma around you on a more personal level. The people you know, the friends and friends of friends, and friends of their friends, are all generally good, aren’t they? Not out for themselves or forcing themselves onto trains before everyone’s gotten off or failing to give a thank you wave when you give way to them in traffic? And the bad ones must get punished. Bad drivers and loud chewers and people who don’t say please or thank you (or just generally aren’t that nice) are the ones who would get punished by Karma. There are real-world consequences for being an asshole, or a narcissist, or a soulless money grabber, aren’t there? And the good people, the truly good-of-heart-and-soul people, they prosper? And then there’s you. You. You’re moral, right? You think good thoughts and do good things and you’re justly rewarded, aren’t you? You’d never accidentally smash a jar of peanut butter in a store and then put it back on the shelf and pretend like nothing happened and, ultimately, get away with it? And you, yeah we’re talking to you, you as one in seven and a half billion living humans, one in one hundred billion humans who have ever lived, which is just one of eight million species currently on Earth, which is just one of eight planets in the solar system, which is just one solar system in tens of billions of solar systems in our galaxy, which is one of one hundred billion galaxies in the universe (that we know of), and on top of that there’s all those other universes and dimensions and stuff, but you, specifically you, you are entitled to living a fair, decent, life of justice and moral equality aren’t you? And you have every right to be outraged when the world that was not made for you, or for anyone for that matter, does not treat you kindly? Life is fair, isn’t it? Because you’re entitled to it? And if it isn’t for whatever reason, and someone makes you and your life harder than it needs to be, then someone or something else should have to fix it? Right? And it does? Right?
Well then good. Karma’s already working just fine. There already is universal balance between good and bad and right and wrong and our product is a raging success. It works. So just give us your goddam fucking money, won’t you?
For a limited time, we’re giving away KARMA™ for just a $1000 one-time payment. Get in while stocks last.