A little while ago, someone – or something – with the user name “its_death” tried to sell the universe on eBay.
A bidding war broke out and the price had reached £999,999.00 before eBay removed the item.
Their email stated that “the listing didn’t offer a specific item for sale”.
They weren’t wrong there. It was an attempt to sell EVERYTHING!
What follows is a copy of the original listing and the questions and answers from potential buyers and the mysterious seller.
“Due to an increase in running costs in these times of financial hardship, the decision has been taken to put the entire universe up for auction.
At 13.7 billion years old, it is in need of some modernisation. There are some black holes, but these can be sorted with a lick of magnolia paint. Though it’s quite roomy, we’d suggest knocking through an extension into a parallel universe.
Included in the sale:
30 billion trillion observable stars. We think there may some more in the attic. If we find them, we’ll throw them in.
Indeterminate number of planets – Some rocky. Some gas. One – interestingly – made entirely of nougat.
Life in all its form and splendour. And Chris Moyles. Sorry.
Full deeds and meaning of life written on the back of a cigarette packet.
Instructions. (Please note that Quantum Mechanics was built on a Friday. Some of the bits are the wrong way round).
Would suit Pan-Dimensional Overlords of unspeakable horror.
Please note that the photo is not to scale. Buyer collects.”
Q. I myself am a restaurant owner. I hear there’s a rather nice restuarant at the end of the universe. Would the purchase of this item enable me to change the entire menu to something unpallatable (possibly made by Jamie oliver) to help boost my own business?
A. Are you a Scooby Doo villain? Can I interest you in a theme park?
Q. Hiya!! i say im most interested!! but does this include TIME and PARADOXICAL events, i’d hate to win then find some snotty nosed
sprat won it from me when we were at School making silly bets!!
Thankz most awfully, all zee best!!!
Yours, Delusions Of Grandia
A. Don’t worry. All time is linear. The only way what you suggest could happen is if you existed at all points in history simultaneously. Only Bruce Forsyth can do that.
Q. Hi, God here (but my friends call me Jehovah). This listing was bought to my attention by Gabriel, what makes you think this is yours to sell? I created it a despite what the book says it took more than 7 days and i own the patent on creation as a whole. You will be hearing from my lawyers Lucifer & Sons and by the time they have finished you wont even have a soul left although if the bidding goes much higher i might consider splitting the money.
A. There’s quite a few of you claiming to be God and, quite frankly, that’s where all of humanity’s problems started.
Q. If the stars move around during transit will it affect my destiny? I’m a Cancerian and could do with making a few life changes.
A. I don’t believe in astrology. I’m a very sceptical person. Typical Leo.
Q. Paradoxically speaking, will the Universe fit in the back of my Galaxy?
A. Mind. Blown.
Q. Regarding your sale of the universe. The current bid is £112. If I was to offer £113 obviously I’m guessing you’ll not be including the part of it I already own. Therefore if we take the price as £113 and subtract of my property (less the total outstanding on my mortgage) would it be fair to just give me the universe and about £60,000?
A. I haven’t thought this through, have I?
Q. Does it include Life and Everything? If not, do you have them and how much? It’s Life I’m particularly interested in I really need to get one.
A. YOU need to get a life? I cannot throw any stones in that particular glass house.
Q. Sorry, you list its age as 13.7 million years old when I’ve got a very respected source next to my bed that says it is a little over 6000 years old. Can you please explain this discrepancy? And if you are in the right, does this mean I can start w*nking again?
A. If Brian Cox says it’s 13.7 billion years old, that’s good enough for me. Knock yerself bandy.
Q. Can you tell me the sell by date on the moon cheese please? Also, if any other planets are made of cheese it would be good to know their sell by dates too. I’ve been caught out before buying cheap products that are out of date.
A. There’s no such thing as moon cheese. That’s just silly.
Q. It’s not apparent from your description who the manufacturer is and thus where replacement parts/repairs can be obtained. Can you shed some light on this?
A. Confirming the manufacturer details in public would mean revealing which is the one true religion and, quite frankly, it’s not a competition.
Q. Does this item come supplied with the full compliment of dimensions necessary for operation? Don’t worry if not, i’m sure i can grab a few counterfeit dimensions from china.
A. We’ve hidden a 7th dimension somewhere. See if you can find where we put it. I think you’ll be surprised.
Q. Hi, could you confirm that you have the original blueprint and/or the V5 document. Also do you happen to have the Haynes manuel?
A. I don’t have the original blueprints or manual, but I’ll supply a Haynes manual for a 1984 Rover 213. The principles are pretty much the same except the Rover’s starter motor is a bit less reliable.
Q. How many previous owners ?
A. Depends on your theological outlook. For all we know, we could all be the figment of Charlie Sheen’s imagination.
Q. Do you know if there are any disputes with the neighbours? and do the Coal Board still own all the mineral rights?
A. I’d watch out for Universe #16453. It’s a real party universe.
Q. I’m having a hell of a problem with my onions this year. I suspect there is a better place to grow them, just the other side of Ursa Minor. Can you confirm that there is a planet there where the soil is quite sandy rather than just another of those bloody ice planets.
A. I know it’s a gas planet, but my advice would be Saturn. You’d produce some very good onion rings. (What am I doing with my life?)
Q. Is it in good condition or held together by string?
A. Any cracks have been packed full of “dark matter” (Actually, Marmite).
Q. Can you tell me the number of dimensions, something I’ve been wondering for some time? S. Hawking.
A. Think of the biggest thing you can. No, bigger than that…. No, bigger than that… No, bigger than that… No, bigger than that… No, bigger than that… No, too big. Start again.
Q. Is there a facility to switch off the inevitable Brian Cox narration?
A. If you win the auction, you will be able to limit Brian Cox staring meaningfully into the distance while stood on a mountain to once a week.
Q. How much would your BIN price be, strictly *without* Chris Moyles?
A. Personally, I can take or leave Chris Moyles. If you win the auction, though, you have to take him.
Q. Not sure about the expansion. It looks like it’s mostly empty space. What if I used a vacuum bag to store it? Would that damage it?
A. It may look empty, but it’s full of dark matter. And all at no extra cost to you, the consumer.
Q. I am a little considered that on becoming the owner of the universe a number of law suits might be made by its occupants on the basis that ‘its not fair’ , along with damages for earthquakes, thunderstorms, etc. Can you please let me know whether the seller is prepared to indemnify the buyer against all legal actions relating to previous ‘natural’ disasters. Of course any disasters after the purchase would rightly be the responsibility of the buyer.
A. I’d recommend you get yourself some good legal advice. Like these guys:
Q. I’m interested but I notice that you say buyer collects. Will it fit in the back of my hi-roof Ford Transit, or will I need to fold it in half?
A. Actually, it’s expanded a bit more since you asked the question. Might need a long wheel based Mercedes.
Q. Does this purchase include dominion over all living beings? – Liam
A. If you can get them to do a bloody word you say. Good luck with that.
Q. Is it possible to get any discount, due to the damaged caused by the likes of creatures such as Parallax?
A. You’re more than welcome to inspect it, but I don’t want any “tyre kickers”.
Q. Can you please provide the exact width and length so I can work out whether it will fit in the back of my car. It’s a Ford Fiesta, but it’s got plenty of boot space when I fold the seats flat.
A. Its constant expansion means you’d probably be better off getting a Transit.
Q. Before buying the Universe, I wanted to know, what type of expansion is present within the Universe, in that is it Open, Closed or Flat? I’d like to know as this could drastically affect the resell value of this Universe.
A. Oh… Erm… I’ll have to go and check the packaging. Or Wikipedia.
Q. Hiya – I am having a bugger of a job finding a present for the missus 40th quite happy to collect, but can you gift wrap it please?
A. What a lovely husband you are. Yes, I have some string theory that should tie it all together nicely.
Q. Would it be possible to courier this? I don’t have anything big enough to pick this up. Also, is there any guarantee? I mean, I don’t want it breaking down within a few days. Or exploding
A. The rate of expansion should mean that there’s no explosion. I’d keep an eye on Betelgeuse, though
Q. Is hell included in the sale price? Are you able to arrange a courier?
A. By ‘hell’ do you mean Clacton-on-Sea? If so, yes.
Q. If I pay postage can you package and send? I know it says collect in person, but I am a really lazy person and would rather you did all the hard work and someone just plonked it on my lap. I am sure you have a box laying around it will fit in.
A. I once bought a memory stick from Amazon. The ridiculously large box they sent it in should be big enough.
Q. I’ll pay double if you keep Chris Moyles. Deal?
A. Sorry. I’m not splitting the items.
The next instalment of The Death Guide To Life will be on Friday. Yay.