Wanna Buy a Bridge?

Wanna Buy a Bridge?

From time to time, I receive email advertisements regarding coupon discounts that have come to be known as Groupon.    In them, you receive offers for substantially reduced prices on items for sale, services, and entertainment.  This offering (I kid you not) was for a Deed of Title for 1 acre of real estate on Mars.  The cost of this was $35 but has been reduced to $12. 

Just to bring you completely up to speed:  Mars is about half the size of Earth by diameter and has a much thinner atmosphere, with an atmospheric volume less than 1% of Earth’s. The atmospheric composition is also significantly different: primarily carbon dioxide-based, while Earth’s is rich in nitrogen and oxygen. (European Space Agency, Sep 1, 2019) 

I wondered why anyone would purchase this.  Yes, it’s only $12 dollars – but $12 here, $12 there adds up.  So why throw $12 out the window?  Well, the reviews gave me the answer I was looking for.  People purchased this primarily as a gift for a child, son, daughter, grandchild, as a novelty.  And they realized this. However, what their main complaint (those who were not happy) was that the documentation that is provided as proof of title is no more than a pdf file which is sent out electronically to the purchaser for self-printing (which is exactly as described in the advertisement under the heading “the fine print”).  So, the quality of this finished product is totally dependent upon one’s ability to produce a professional looking document.


Own an acre of land in our Solar System’s 4th planet; package includes the deed, a map with location of your land, and a Mars info eBook.

The Deal

One acre of land on Mars ($35 value)

Novel gift for entertainment purposes only.

The Fine Print

Online reservation required. Limit 1 per person. May buy 9 additional as gifts. No cancellations, refunds, or exchanges. New customers only. Registration will be received up to 48 hours after submission. Certificate of registration will be delivered via PDF format, access to a printer required to print PDF pack. For entertainment purposes only.

Forget the fact that Mars is uninhabitable; that no one can travel there under any circumstances – all that off the table and thinking purely of it as a novelty purchase, and the buyers were upset that the documentation did not look authentic?


When I was a child, the expression was, “If you believe that, I have a bridge I can sell you.”  This was stated to illustrate how gullible one could be.  I am guessing those people grew up and decided no one wants to own a bridge – but Mars, now there’s something nobody has!!!  We are always complaining about the National Debt.  Is it just possible that it has something to do with our spending?  There’s an even larger issue here – and that is that this represents a purchase (even if for a child’s gift) that is being made from a seller that has absolutely no claim to the product! 

If you cannot think of anything better to do with $12 than to throw it away on a fake deed for an uninhabitable planet, take that $12 and help a neighbor, feed a child, give to a shelter, donate it to a hospital.  I can think of thousands of more appropriate things someone could do with $12.  And just think of the message that action would send to your beloved child, grandchild, etc.


References:European Space Agency, Sep 1, 2019, retrieved from the world wide web on April 18, 2020 from

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  1. Ann Joyce on April 20, 2020 at 2:11 pm

    Good job

  2. Marlo on April 20, 2020 at 2:25 pm

    Excellent point! Buying property on Mars is this generations equivalent of buying and naming a star for older generations. I for one have made my fair share of novel purchases that had no value but as I get older find these type purchases frivolous. Perhaps, purchases as such serve as a teachable moment.

    • the Roaring Ellie on April 20, 2020 at 4:13 pm

      Couldn’t help but throw that “STAR” comment in there….for “older generations”. Ahem….