Taryn and I have been married for ten and a half years, but our oldest kid is just four and a half, so that means we had a good six years to kill. At some point in the late 90s, we "adopted" a virtual child. We called him Rufus.
Rufus was nothing more than a picture of a monkey. In fact, here's the very picture of Rufus we jokingly parented. We'd chat at night about Rufus, discuss his progress, wonder if he was getting enough exercise or gaining enough weight. Rufus was our first child, like batting practice before the big game, but without an actual ball.
I miss him.