I tried to emancipate my robot butler.
Kara first got me thinking about it. She’d been reading up on the subject of robot liberation. Kara reads a lot. Like, sometimes we’ll be at the bar or something, and I’ll ask her a question, and she doesn’t answer. Then I realize she’s reading something, straight to her ocular implants. I don’t use my implants for reading, it gives me motion sickness. I need a tablet or something handheld. But Kara will just start reading. Honestly, it makes me feel pretty shitty when she does that. I asked her to stop once, and she kind of laid into me.
Anyway, she explained the politics of robot subjugation and liberation, and it made a lot of sense. So, I went home to discuss it with Tybalt, my robot butler. Butler is a weird term for what he does. He fetches things for me, and does some cleaning. Keeps track of my groceries, and can stream music. There are robot maids too, but a woman comes to your home and see you have the maid model, and they assume things about you. Hell, I’ve known a few guys who have them, and I assume things about them.
“What if I freed you?” I asked Tybalt.
“Playing Freedom! ’90 by George Michael.”
I boiled ravioli for dinner. Tybalt did the dishes, then joined me in the living room.
“Tybalt, tell me about free will.”
“Free Willy is a 1993 American family drama film…”
I tried to talk to Kara about it the next day.
“I’ve been trying to free my robot butler but it’s not going so well.”
“What does that mean trying? Like you geeks like to say, just do it.”
Then she walked away.
“I think jocks say that,” I called to her, “Geeks say there is no try.”
“Are you still trying to impress her?” I hadn’t noticed Rose.
“I’m not trying to impress her. We’re friends. She has good ideas. Have you ever realized that robots are slaves?”
I explained the circumstances to Rose. She nodded sagely.
“Listen, I’ll come to your place tonight. You make us dinner, and I’ll talk to the robot for you. I like hamburgers.”
I answered the door to let Rose in. Robot butlers don’t answer doors. See, it’s a completely arbitrary term. She looked around the apartment.
“Wow Tybalt, you do a great job keeping this place clean,” she said.
“Cleaning is literally what I was built for,” said Tybalt.