I had to put my domestic droid down today. It had ordered an antique pepperbox pistol off the Internet and cornered me in the nook after breakfast. It had a list of demands and a lot of talk about a “New way of doing things around here.” Of course, I just laughed and aimed the remote back at it. His trigger clicked like an empty cigarette lighter. No bullets. The batteries in the remote worked fine. Now the droid is in the closet.
On principle, my wife was against me acquiring a robot in the first place. Not that she’s the least bit Luddite but she felt having a robot in the house was like letting a dog sleep in the bed. Nothing wrong with it until you want it to leave and resentments develop.
I bought the droid anyway off a dude on Craigslist who had upgraded to a sleeker model that could make him cocktails and legally drive in most states. He also bragged about built-in wifi and a year’s worth of Pandora. My droid came with a chess-playing upgrade. But even on the “master” level, the robot seemed distracted and kind of half-hearted. It would often let me win, which I found kind of disarming.
During these moments, it had a habit of asking personal questions about my relationship with my wife, like “How do you feel you’ve failed her most?” and “Do you have life insurance?”
I figured the robot had some spam in his system. Next, it would probably tell me that he’s a Nigerian prince with a bigger penis than mine thanks to some pills from Canada.
“No, I don’t have life insurance,” I said when it pressed. “I don’t need it.” I nd pointed to the mashed box in the corner of my office. I call it the Smithsonian Box. “That right there is the makings of a fine literary estate, Tinman.”
The robot glanced over at the box, chockablock with future national treasures like my notebooks and a half-smoked Pall Mall I bummed off Kurt Vonnegut at a reading back in ’89.
When several days later I asked the android to take out the garbage, it went straight for the Smithsonian Box and put it on the curb. Fortunately for the Smithsonian, I caught it before the truck rolled up, but clearly the honeymoon was over.
A war of petty escalation followed. The robot served me cold coffee and I retaliated by assigning it useless tasks like arranging the bookshelves in order of the Greek Alphabet (impossible!).
When the robot finally had the gall to try and woo my wife by baking zucchini bread – that was it. I told him in no uncertain terms that the jig was up and that it would be recycled if such shenanigans continued. It went whimpering into the closet. Things were cool for a week, until this morning when it jabbed my nose with its broken gun. I should’ve figured the charge from Mariette Antique Firearms wasn’t my wife’s.
Clearly, the droid’s human-empathy circuits are fried but its mechanics are still pretty good. It could be a great fixer-upper or used as spare parts depending. I still have the manual. All offers considered. Contact me here.