Photo credit: IfOnlyIIn the known universe, the pervasiveness of things can only be remotely rivaled by the fecundity of stuff. Some things are nature made, some made by man, some things are intangible; oh, so we’re making this a thing now? Some things are altogether unnecessary; BDMS fan fiction and flash mobs. What sets one thing apart from another has much to do with its ability to alter a person’s otherwise mundane perspective. The below five things serve as primo perspective boosters:
1. Balloon Expedition over Mt. Everest
A company called IfOnly, which traffics in “extraordinary experiences,” offers the opportunity to join a hot air balloon expedition led by Senior Pilot Chris Dewhirst. For $4,800,000 you can travel to Nepal where you “may spend several weeks, depending on how long it takes to find an appropriate weather window” preparing to attempt a more than 30,000 foot ascent over the Himalayas. Dewhirst was the first person to pilot a hot air balloon over Mount Everest. Should he deem you physically and mentally skilled enough, you could become one of only a few others to have accomplished this feat. Should the daunting price turn you off, consider purchasing two spots for a much more reasonable total of $5,215,000.
2. Around the World in 24 Days
For a much more reasonable $122,000 a head, TCS Expeditions offers a “Timeless Treasures” package that escorts travelers via a 52 seat private Boeing 757 to “eight global highlights.” Beginning in Los Angeles and ending in Orlando—strangely not billed as the ninth and most wondrous highlight of them all—stops along the way include Bora Bora, Tahiti; Sydney, Australia; Luang Prabang, Laos; Udaipur, India; Serengeti Plain or Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania; Cape town, South Africa; Sossusvlei, Namibia; and, Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. One of the better perks of the package includes expedited passage through airports.
3. As Above, So Below
For those more thrilled by depth than altitude, the BBQ Donut rents starting at $313.77 for three hours or sells for $50,000. The floating meat cooker seats up to ten adults and pairs perfectly with this $42,000 Hot Tub Boat out of Seattle, Washington. Grill a brat, down the brat, and then let it all settle while reclining in a boat that is a hot tub that is a boat. Best day ever.
4. uBeam, Wireless Charging
Like 19th century robber barons, tyrannical wireless phone companies of today notoriously defraud their clients. Each new mobile device they release comes outfitted with a battery charging port specific to that device. So, the average customer gets bulldozed into purchasing a new charger each time they upgrade. More important than foreign policy, there should be a law in place that mandates one universal charger for all! Until that bill passes, uBeam has a novel solution. CEO Meredith Perry and her team have built a fully functional ultrasonic wireless power transmission prototype, with a final product still about two years from launching. In the way Wi-Fi is a thing all around us, uBeam hopes to do the same with battery power using a transmitter that transfers ultrasound waves to a small receiver attached to your phone.
5. Magic Leap
Another as yet available cutting edge invention, Magic Leap, plans to expand upon Oculus Rift’s virtual gaming platform. Though facts remain fuzzy, clearly ML hopes to revolutionize augmented reality. The site boasts elephants that fit in the palm of your hand, dragons, unicorns and other fantastical imaginary simulations that purport to weave seamlessly into your run-of-the-mill every day experiences. Some hybrid of “Space Jam,” “Total Recall,” the “Boosted Peak” Chuck Palahniuk wrote about in his 2007 novel “Rant.” If ever the option of transposing a simulation of a palm sized baby elephant over an antagonistic co-worker becomes viable, the world will no doubt see its number of Prozac prescriptions fall drastically.