That ruddy nephew of mine. He’s only gone and got himself a goldfish now. Well, it’s a parrot fish to be exact. I’m not saying that he’s obsessed with it. But he spends a fair bit of time feeding it, and making sure that it’s tank is clean, and rearranging all the little plants an ornaments and stuff. In fact sometimes he won’t let me manifest myself through his body and prepare one of these little homilies for you to read until he has made sure that little Freddie is OK.
People don’t need to have goldfish, they can gave virtual ones inside their computers, and the same goes for records and record players, and books and newspapers, and calculators and televisions and pens and paper and crayons and typewriters and musical instruments and all ruddy sorts. Kiddies don’t even have real toys any more, they have virtual ones, inside their kiddie tablets. There are even programmes where kiddies can cook dinners and it won’t be too ruddy long before they can eat them an’all.
And then it’s not just things and toys, it’s whole situations. A few years ago, our Michael was spending three or four hours a day believing that he was the manager of a ruddy football team that was battling for a place in the English Premier League. He was buying and selling players from all over the world and setting their wages and training programmes,and picking the teams for all the matches and developing the ruddy stadium and everything. He was getting stressed if results went against them, and knew more about his imaginary football career than he did about his own ruddy job.
That can’t have been a lot of good for his mental health. It had to separate him from reality and give him a less than solid sense of his own actual personal identity, leaving him wide open to belief in alien abduction “hearing voices” or even bodily possession by deceased relatives of the opposite gender. There was probably no hope for him once he strayed into the virtual world.
But plenty of people do it, and there are plenty of people who have let their minds, bodies, home environments and relationships go to rack and ruddy well ruin because they believe in a glamorous “virtual life that they have created for themselves, by something as simple as creating a false identity on the Facebook, or as complicated as creating their own “second Life” where they are fit, handsome and eternally young with a few magical abilities to help them get ahead in a glamorous world where the economic and political realities of 21st century life have no bearing. (apart from the need to pay the Internet company, the electricity bill, and sustain the wretched flesh and bone body that is controlling the spirit having all the fantasy adventures.)
I can’t ruddy fathom it myself. The fish and the football team, the glamorous warlocks and wizards, the deceased Aunts, and the doe eyed virtual Japanese lasses that some blokes apparently watch whilst they have plugged their John Thomases into something that attaches to their computer while they wear goggles to watch what’s going on. Stick with me and the fish Michael. Or you’ll end up going ruddy blind!