George Costanza's wallet in Google Wallet ad
In an ad promoting its as yet unlaunched pay-through-phone service, Google offers a famous scene from "Seinfeld" in order to begin making futurists salivate.
I've never seen the point of a wallet.
It's always struck me that if you lose it, you lose everything. If you just keep your stuff in your pocket (and, really, how much stuff do you need?), you're at best likely to lose one or two things, rather than everything. In any case, all wallets are flamingly ugly, the ultimate in afterthought design.
Google also hates wallets. Indeed, it wants you to.
To fool you into thinking you still have a wallet, its as yet unlaunched service is called Google Wallet. And, thanks to the simplifiers at TechCrunch, I have been pointed toward an ad for Google Wallet, featuring a scene from Seinfeld.
You might remember that George Costanza, Seinfeld's whiny whipping-person, had a very large wallet. It was stuffed with every kind of paper. One day, it exploded.
So Google has taken this scene, apparently shoved it through some pleasant digital processes to make it look nicer, slipped in a close-up or two of a Google Wallet flyer and put the Google Wallet logo on the end.
I know that many still watch reruns of "Seinfeld" in order to ease the pain of their loneliness or to help them get to sleep when port, brandy, or online dating sites have failed.
The question is whether these same people will be sufficiently moved by this ad to become early adopters of the cell phone payment mechanism. Perhaps.
Can nostalgia help you through to a new way of life? There are plenty of presidential candidates who have trodden this very path.
Correction Sept. 19 at 6:45 a.m. PT: This story initially misspelled the surname of the "Seinfeld" character. His name is George Costanza.