Gary Dahl was an ordinary man with an incredible vision. He knew that most people liked animals, but that modern living and go-go lifestyles had rendered many of the classic pet choices untenable. Dogs? You had to take them out for walks, plus they barked way too much in an urban environment. Cats? Notoriously fickle creatures who demanded constant attention. Ferrets? They were secretly Freemasons. But what about… a pet rock?
The idea was brilliant, if by brilliant you meant ‘horrible enough that it was destined by fate to succeed.’ He immediately patented the idea, which no one had amazingly thought up before, and began to sell common stones from the side of the road for $3.95. Each rock was nestled snugly in its own personal pet carrier (cardboard box), and a Pet Rock Trading Manual was included with the purchase that informed the buyer about how to punish them properly if it bit you on the leg.
Now, the fact that a person could just go outside, pick up a stone from off the ground, and place that in a box did nothing to stop people from buying the product by the handful. The tiny gray rocks were just so darn cute! (plus, they never did their business on the carpet.) Mercifully, the trend only lasted about six months, but by the end of that period Gary Dahl was a millionaire. Think about that the next time you’re sitting in your office cubicle and dreaming of a better life.