Suggested Audio Candy:
Kraftwerk “The Robots”
“Your call is important to us”
What a festering pool of goose-phlegm. My call is nothing of the sort. The only thing of importance to these chumps is that they’re defragged at least once a week. A training exercise should do the trick, you know, one of those ones with an ice-breaker. Where every participant, none of whom know one another or have any intention of changing that statistic, are required to stand up in front of the whole group, state their name which is already written on their chest, and tell their peers one thing about them that makes them unique. That can be some stretch after their frontal lobe has been neutralized by years of policy and procedure. Listen to me, ranting like a frustrated fishwife. I guess I should explain why we’re here. Corporate robots or drones as they are often referred to, they’re my beef today.
We all know them well and telephone is but one of their methods of miscommunication. They pop up wherever they please like genital warts and make your dick itch in much the same manner. Sometimes they are unleashed on the general public and, when this is the case, we get to put a face to the name. Yet nothing exists behind the eyes, just the scars of lobotomization and a mass of tepid air which is omitted orally by way of vocal fart clouds. We’re not talking of the sneaky cheek slider, a thinly veiled rasp which barely registers in the nostrils. Instead it’s the final flatulence of an overweight sheet metal worker just before he excavates his bowel and lord only knows the stench that ensues. If you look closely at these individuals you will discern the long arm of industry forced into their rectums, cufflinks snagging their sphincters.
It is too late for these hapless non-entities. By the conclusion of Invasion of The Body Snatchers we were all too aware that Donald Sutherland wouldn’t simply be able to be ‘talked down’. Likewise, as Palmer ingested Windows noggin first in The Thing, both Garry and Childs knew that a simple back and shoulder rub wouldn’t suffice. The damage was done and the same can be said for the multitudes of mumbling morons who have already taken a fisting before their first morning coffee. Ask them a question which requires even the faintest degree of thinking on the move and they appear to blow a fuse. That blank, emotionless gaze from well-glazed eyes tells a story and each sorry word that leaves their fruitlessly flapping lips has been placed there strategically to irk our chains.
This lunchtime I was awakened from my slumber by one such drone although this was done via the use of telecommunication. I often consider how refreshing it would be to wake to a phone call whereby your primary involvement entails answering a laundry list of security questions. But you called me! You don’t see a burglar breaking into someone else’s property and criticizing their choice of furniture positioning. So what gives these dickbags cause to expect me to jump through their hoops before a single Cheerio has passed my mouth? Are you demented? Do you know what a ridiculous request that is? To be fair, these folk are probably cringing on the other end before making the call and fully aware how preposterous a concept it is but nobody is holding a gun to their head.
We all have free choice but, for some mindless morons, it is preferred not to utilize our God-given right to individuality. Ironically, the corporate ladder can be climbed that much easier when showcasing a complete lack of distinctiveness. Maybe that’s why us creative types end up following our dreams as they appear far less pre-ordained than the corporate nightmare presented us. I envisage the interview process, something which baffles me to the nth degree as why meet with someone three times to decide whether you like them or not, and just as the successful candidate is preparing to sign on the spotted line the old machine gets wheeled out from the archive. You know the one, it takes your cerebellum and replaces it with circuitry. It’s the first step along your path to becoming fully-fledged cyborg.
Now, I wish it to be clear, that I have no problem with robots or any of their affiliates. Johnny Five was a wonderfully charismatic pile of nuts and bolts and I’d happily chew the fat with Steve Guttenberg also. However, anyone familiar with Alien will be only too aware that good robots can turn bad and those under the spell of these magnates are the least appealing variety. They deny you a refund on a clearly soiled product because, and I quote, “my manager has told me that we can only exchange like-for-like”. Any attempt to dig a little deeper is woefully misguided and, should you catch up with whoever has the ominous task of being he or she in authority, the same response would be pre-loaded. It’s like playing pass the parcel with a cancerous cabbage, nobody wants the buck to fall with them .
“You are currently thirteenth in the queue”
Call centers are the outposts of many such cybernetic twits and a massive bugbear I know for all of us. That’s how far the buck gets passed: Outer Mongolia. Organizations are banking on the fact that, by the time you’ve been passed along several times and held to the grinding audio candy for thirty minutes, you will be rendered impotent and simply hang up your phone in desperation. I guess it saves on unnecessary defragmentation that way. Should I pity the fools? Well, yes and no actually. They’re paid pittance, something which sickens my sanctum, and expected to deal with a melange of disgruntled service recipients whose only reason for calling is to bitch and gripe. In that respect, I get it, it’s a two-way deal but it doesn’t make their conduct any more fragrant.
I recently shared a boudoir with another who shares my contempt for the corporate robot and we spoke on many occasions of our wish to supply the virus which causes these motherboards to short. Life is precious, our hour’s costly, and we don’t necessary have the free time on our hands to deal with such numbskulls but that isn’t to say that we won’t have to and on a bi-daily basis to boot. Then, when are last nerve can be whittled down no more, we have a questionnaire pushed in our face. On a scale of one to ten, one being extremely happy and ten being downright livid, how would you feel if I stopped you in the street and asked you something pointless? Using the same calibration, it would measure a one if you asked me how it would make me feel placing a ferret down the back of your back-girdle. Now fuck off! Alright, perhaps that was a tad parsimonious but, I did say at the start, that I had an axe to grind. That’s better, got it all out of my system now. Rebooting.