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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Caveat Emptor

To be sure, the photo above is quite a few years old, but I thought it would be appropriate anyway, because I hadn’t seen it before today, and for other reasons, which I’ll discuss in a couple of days.

It is true, in the meantime, that I did indeed own a vending machine that I was allowed to install at work - keep filled and pocket an additional $80 or so a month selling chocolates and bags of chips.

What we have here is a vending machine in Japan that sells cars.

But not really.

It’s an eye-catching 3D advertisement that plays on the Japanese cultural phenomenon of vending machines located on every available street corner.

But can you imagine if this was something for real?

There you are stuffing ¥5 yen coins into the pay slot, finally getting in about 220,000 of the damned coins… you press the button to make your selection (there’s no selection - what you see is what you get)… and it jams… re-sets and there’s no proof you ever stuck in around $11,000 in ¥5 coins… except when someone comes by and discovers 220,000 ¥5 coins in the payment box.

Hey… you’d get your car, but now you have to wait until the vending machine technician comes out.

And that’s bot happening until tomorrow… and you have to stick around, because the technician said they would be there between 8AM and 5PM… and now it’s raining… and you tried to take cover under the vending machine and now your head is stuck… and now some bratty Grade 1 primary school students in their yellow rain slickers and yellow rubber rain boots are throwing rocks at you while screaming “gaijin-gaijin” taunts, but they are only six-years-old and and can’t throw very well, and one of them breaks the glass on he vending machine, and now your Smart Car is scratched and dented, and now you don’t want it anymore, but you are screwed because there’s no deposit, no return on the car purchased from a vending machine.

It could happen.

Great marketing, however.

Andrew Joseph
PS: Caveat Emptor, is Latin, ese (Latin, not Latino) (oops) for: Let the buyer beware.


  1. Replies
    1. Ha! You wouldn't believe how much stuff is rolling around in my head! I never know what it is until it poops out (yes, poops). It's how I write - stream of consciousness... since I never know what I'm going to write, it stops me from being bored having to write. I know... weird.

  2. Maybe weird but that's your edge. Makes you unique as a writer.

    1. Ha! Thanks, my friend! I'm trying to write an airplane blog for Pioneers of Aviation... damn thing's taking me over 30 hours! Resrearch, and then trying to go over other people's confusing writings, more research... plus work is busy... I'll finish the airplane article today, I hope, and focus on Japan again... though stuff like this article was fun to write.