Before people can even ask themselves “what the hell is Apple Pay,” many merchants are asking each other, “How can we stop it?”

And here at V+CO, we’re contorting ourselves into torturous yogi positions while asking ourselves much bigger questions about the ever-evolving nature of this consumerist world.

Numerous merchants have vocalized their resistance to Apple’s new mobile payments system. In fact, retailers such as Walmart, Kmart, 7-Eleven, and Best Buy have formed a joint venture in order to develop their own mobile payment app. Pharmaceutical chains CVS and Rite Aid have both elected to shut out Apple Pay in their stores. News outlet The Verge characterizes their motivation for developing their own alternative as thus: “The notion of a widespread payment system controlled by retailers and free of credit card processing fees is very appealing to merchants.” 

In short, a new space has opened up, which may completely revolutionize the way that people pay for things. Retailers may finally be able to cut out the very credit card companies that for endless years annoyed them and adversely affected their bottom line. And what new system will be adopted? We don’t know yet. However, an opportunity has clearly arisen, and innovation is stepping up.

During one of our "there are no stupid questions so speak up" brainstorming sessions, we decided to take a step back and ask the question: Why pay for anything? Why acquire things?  I mean, really, isn’t money just an instrument of darkness that distracts us from what really matters? Shouldn’t we simply focus on love and light? Shouldn’t we opt to instead appreciate the mindfulness and presence of each moment, by doing yoga or some such thing? 

Granted, it can be difficult to strike that optimal balance between the contradictory psychological states of meditation and arousal, a yoga class does seem like a worthwhile pursuit, as far as trendy, psychobabble-burdened pursuits are concerned.

Or maybe the answer to our woes is something completely different. Maybe it doesn’t make sense for us to develop a modern, high tech method for obtaining the items we need. Maybe we just need to go really retro. Listen, this may seem a little random and old school, but I’m just going to put this idea on the table: Maybe we could implement some type of barter system involving chickens. 

The more pragmatic individuals among us may opt to give Apple Pay a chance. Although rife with controversy, the digital wallet service would allow consumers to make purchases using the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, Apple Watch-compatible devices (iPhone 5 and later models), iPad Air 2, and iPad Mini 3. And that could be extremely convenient.

Retailer resistance and consumer hesitance remains understandable. The Verge reports that past attempts at a phone-facilitated payment system have essentially all amounted to a confusing mess. Writer Dieter Bohn argues, “It has always been a financial cold war between credit card companies, banks, phone companies, and phone manufacturers fighting to divert a tiny rivulet of the humongous river of money that flows through credit cards every day.”

The Apple Pay controversy will be resolved in time; and while we wait, we’d be wise to spend more time thinking about the things that truly matter: yoga babes and traded chickens.

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