•About this Urban Legend•
Capitol hill, Seattle, Washington - 1990~2018+*
A mysterious soda machine with 6 colourful "?MYSTERY?" buttons, it dispensed random vintage soda & other discontinued canned drinks from the 80's for 0.75¢ until it mysteriously vanished in 2018….
unlike most other urban legends this one actually existed. However, because the machine itself Is at least confirmed to exist (& in-fact does dispense strange drinks.) i suppose that its less of an urban legend and more of an oddity.
A popular attraction when it was around, it randomly dispensed all manner of soda, everything from “MUGS” Root beer to “CRUSH” orange soda to even the ever elusive "Crystal Pepsi" (humorously seems to be everything except standard coke.) & many odd flavoured soda pops of the 1980's (Hubba bubba soda to name one among other discontinued, vintage brand & sodas which are not easily available in the United-States.) - Some people have reported getting rare cans which where worth hundreds of dollars (if sold to the right collector.)
- To this very day: nobody can say for sure exactly who restocks it or collects the money: though pictures have been captured of a man and a woman pulling up in a white van and restocking the machine. Since 2019 numerous documentaries on the subject have also popped up on youtube.
its been called the "Polybius" of soda machines, probably because of the number of outlandish rumors surrounding it -Urban Legends surrounding the machine range from it being "haunted" to it being stocked by "Aliens" or "Time Travellers" to the soda cans containing things other than soda or even receiving 'off brand' soda from alternative universes. – The true mystery: is how this person (whoever they are) is getting discontinued & exceptionally rare drinks which would essentially be incredibly expensive (or impossible) to acquire!? (and why sell them for only 75¢?) -
Some claim that the soda machine was being operated illegally (allegedly someone asked city hall about it to which they claimed there was no record of the machine.) The locksmiths where the soda machine stood in front of for years claim to have no idea who owned it. - -at one point (around 2015) the machine became viral for stocking exceptionally rare soda, in 2018 the price on the machine increased to a dollar. – Unfortunately; soon after the boom in popularity also meant that the machine was inevitably vandalized, Graffitied and its coin slot became broken – the mystery machine vanished sometime in june of2018 and a note was taped to the hand rail where the machine once stood it read "Went for a walk - Machine"
There was a QR code on the machines middle button which lead to a facebook page for Updates! (they've been on facebook since at least 2012.) in 2019 & over the course of the pandemic, they posted many photoshops of the machine, travelling the world to landmarks such as machupicchu and Seattles Fremont troll and other famous locations, holidays & events (including LGBTQ pride!!)
At one point it apparently also made friends with some bears 🐻 who it blamed for "going crazy with the graffitti." - the page has also on occasion shared articles and youtube videos where its featured. –
*Earlier This year (January 29 2022) the page posted a picture of the machine covered in graffiti with the text "Doctor said he can probably fix me." – Whoever this mysterious "doctor" is i hope they succeed! –
...Still no word for when exactly the machine might "return" to Seattle if it does it seems it wont be at the exact same spot (the location where it once stood is now a bus stop.) Previous posts to the page seem to hint that its under repair and that it might return "someday" whenever it does, I'll be sure to update this post!! :)
..Anyway I mostly decided to illustrate this machine because my Polybius sticker felt a bit lonely as the only "weird machine" (and with the colors being opposites it felt like a natural 'sequel.") you'll notice i decided to keep some of the more 'iconic' graffitti on there as well as censor the brands/names in a silly way, i also included stickers from some of the landmarks the machine visited on its trip. (yes i reused the bebsi or "iebsb" cans from an earlier sticker I drew a while back.) those that browse their facebook page might be able to understand the inside jokes!!