Wednesday, October 16, 2013

"Robots"


J: Today we want to talk about—um—it. Doing it.
A: [Laugh.] Just say what you mean.
J: But you know what I mean. So does everybody else.
A: [Shaking head.] OK. So we’ve known each other a long time.
J: Yeah—25 years or something!
A: And in all that time, you’d think—well, things would get a little boring.
J: Well—they have gotten kinda boring from time to time.
A: I wasn’t bored. I was just frustrated.
J: OK, frustrated. We can call it that.
[Gets up and goes behind the podium where an oversized bottle of beer is waiting. Uncaps the beer and takes a long drink.]
But people are probably wondering, you know, what’s our secret.
A: And we do have one.
J: Yep. Two. Robots.
A: You heard that right. Robots.
J: We've had the same fights, over and over. A million times! It’s gotten so that we don’t even need to have these fights anymore. They’re so yesterday! So...fifteen or twenty years ago!
A: That’s the downside of knowing each other so long. But with robots, that problem is over. Solved.
J: Yeah. The robots can have the fights now.
A: We just program the robots and let them slug it out. And we can go on having fun. Enjoying each other’s company! Just like married people are supposed to do.
J: Yeah, and so rarely actually do.
A: It’s like marriage can be one big failure. One big let-down. I see it from Tallulah’s perspective. Old people yammering in raised voices about something incomprehensible and repetitive. How stupid is that? Let’s move on. It’s the twenty-first century! Let robots feel the pain!
[They kiss.]
T: [Appears stage right, with the two robots.] Ew, gross—kissing! Can I kiss, too?
A: Here they are.
[The robots start arguing. A and J share the beer and root for their bot. They have remotes and occasionally aim them at the robots to mix up the battle.]
J: You can be as involved as you’d like. Usually we just turn them on when we feel the urge and hit auto, because who has the time?
A: [Describes the programming parameters, networking ability, open architecture, and logic parity in some detail.] So you see, nobody gets an obvious advantage. Meaning, it’s fair play!
J: Occasionally we learn something from the exchange, but mainly they’re just taking over a dull task. Leaving us available for more creative pursuits.
A: Welcome to the future.

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