October 2002 (v5 i2)
Exposing the plight of the student body since 1997
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Satan Sells Souls on eBay
by Elizabeth Barksdale, Staff Writer

Satan's seller rating will knock you on your ass
[illustration: Todd Nienkerk, Aaron Stanush]
THE DARK REALM — To the despair of investors everywhere, Hell CEO Satan has reported a loss for the third straight quarter. “You’d think with the state the world’s in today, the Hell Corp. would be in great shape,” shrugged the Prince of Darkness. “But to be honest, we’ve been in debt ever since the mid-80’s when we built the Plastic Ball Pit of Eternal Damnation.”

The sprawling pit, roughly the size of Minnesota with a gaping depth of four feet, was painstakingly filled with sinners, colorful plastic balls, whiny 5-year-olds, and a vague, persistent odor of urine. Based on play areas at Chuck. E. Cheese’s, the Pit was a key step in the Satan’s sweeping scheme to make the underworld more “hip,” while retaining the level of suffering that’s made Hell the leader in unspeakable torment for untold millennia. “Well, I admit I’ve had better ideas,” growled Satan, taking a sip of his mocha latte while taking a moment to reflect on his long career and briefly possess a housewife in Idaho. “Times change, we were just trying to keep up. I mean, until last year, my legions of demonic minions were still running around with pitchforks. I mean, I kid thee not, pitchforks. The sinners they were poking at were just laughing at them, kept saying things like ‘Oh ouch, yeah, like that really hurts, farm boy…oh fuck, fuck, OWWW!’ These archaic practices failed to meet our standards of excellence for inflicting suffering. Now every demon has a company-provided John Deere riding lawnmower to run over the damned.”

But millions of plastic balls and riding mowers don’t come cheap. Because of these and other gross expenditures, Satan has been forced to liquidate a significant amount of Hell Corp’s assets. “After a lot of brainstorming, someone realized that many people have sold me their souls over the years,” said Satan. “And while in theory it sounds cool to own someone’s immortal soul, they’re not really that great an investment. They’re kind of like Beanie Babies—only valuable in a limited collectors’ market. So I figured, why not get rid of them?”

After a briefly trying to peddle souls on KVTL, a New Jersy-based home shopping network, Satan turned to eBay.

“The home shopping seemed like a viable approach, but I suppose I don’t come off too well on camera. Besides, right after my segment, they were selling collectable porcelain clowns. Those things really gave me the creeps," said the Devil, cringing. Sitting down at his strawberry iMac gave Satan a more anonymous approach to salesmanship, and PR representative Kelly Ripa is proud to say that the Devil and his associates have already gained “a considerable amount of revenue, excluding costs of bubble wrap, shipping and handling, etc.”

Satan’s customers are, for the most part, very satisfied with their purchases. “I was just shopping for knickknacks on the web, but I found a real bargain when I bid on Ghengis Khan’s soul and bought it for $36.57,” said grandmother and eBay aficionado Myrtle Hatch of Toronto. She now keeps the 11th-century Mongol warlord’s restless soul in a vintage Incredible Hulk thermos, another eBay find. “It’s a real conversation piece,” says Hatch of the possessed thermos, which spews brimstone, howls ancient Mongolian curses, and demands yak’s milk day and night.

Minor legal difficulties have arisen with the eBay venture, however. “Certain people whose souls I’ve resold are still alive, and they’ve been giving me some flack,” said Satan. “For instance, Justin Timberlake left me this whiny voicemail the other day about how our contract said nothing about resale.” Timberlake traded in his soul several years ago in exchange for his pop stardom and questionable sex appeal. “He seems to resent that the 14-year-olds who bid on the rights to his soul didn’t want to shell out more than they did. I told him that the top bid of $762 is more than I would personally pay for Yanni’s or Liberace’s souls, let alone his.”

Selling off souls on eBay is just one part of a multi-faceted asset-liquidation strategy being implemented by Hell Corp that will include the sale of holdings across several industries, including Viacom, CiCi’s Pizza and the Oakland Raiders.
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