Death by Trope
The famous Youtuber has millions of fans.
They’ve watched him play all kinds
of games: Minecraft, Roblox, Terreria,
and Happy Wheels. Today he records himself
playing a game in which he is a Youtuber.
His game self records videos of gaming.
The famous Youtuber’s game videos
do poorly. In the game he is not as famous
as the Youtuber he plays against and he
doesn’t understand how his game self
is so bad. He knows the tricks, the manner,
the talk. Nothing works. He obsesses
over beating the game Youtuber who is played
by another Youtuber not as famous as he is.
The famous Youtuber returns every day,
working more hours, later days, trying
different videos, different lighting, more coffee
to beat his game self’s rival. But he fails.
He doesn’t notice his actual virtual audience
dwindle even as the virtual virtual audience
of his game self slowly climbs, although
never enough to beat his rival. The famous
Youtuber’s hair grows long and stringy. Weeks later
he’s bearded and grimy. The plant behind him
wilts and browns. His girlfriend leaves him.
His pug eats scraps of PB&Js and open canned
beans lying about, relieves himself in the closets.
After months, when the famous Youtuber’s game self
finally defeats his rival, the virtual virtual victory
goes unnoticed, because no one watches anymore.
Read more of Michael T. Young’s poetry.
Photo by jef Safi/Flickr