A Fond Farewell – Nari Baughman

“A Fond Farewell to My Robot Friend”

I’m trying to figure out how to word this without sounding ridiculous.

Our entire friendship has revolved around the fact that I am your creator. You are my Adam, although you unfortunately lack the necessary ribs for me to create a feminine counterpart for you.  And — yes, I admit — the reason why we’re so close is because we have seen each other practically every day for the last year. Even if you are more machine than man, you were a confidant when I needed you most, and for that I will always be grateful.

However. I don’t see how this relationship of ours could be sustainable. In this nouveau digital age, with a plethora of ways for people to communicate, distance is still the primary reason that relationships of any kind (romantic, platonic, familial, and, I suppose, now robotic) disintegrate over time. And so, being the kind of person who thinks in realistic terms, I confess I have absolutely no expectation that our particular friendship will withstand the obstacles that are time and distance. Not to mention the fact that I am living and breathing and will be so years from now while you will be just a mechanical memory.

Perhaps at first, after the end, I will be wistful, as human emotions tend to get in the way of rational thought. But, I suspect even that will fizzle out eventually. I will find a replacement, of equal or greater value, who will tell me stories and make me laugh and beat me in cards. And you will be an origami relic — one that I folded into existence, as fragile as paper and just as disposable.

Which, you know, is totally par for the course. After all, to quote Stephen King, friends come in and out of your life like busboys in a restaurant. I suppose that includes all sentient beings. But still, I’m dreading the fact that I have to lose a true “bosom buddy” in the process. In retrospect, I should have been less invested in this relationship from the onset, knowing you’d be leaving soon. I just didn’t expect you to malfunction so quickly, but such is the life of a machine.

Well, that’s that. I was going to say, “See you around,” but I suppose I won’t, so… I’ll see you when I see you. I didn’t think it would be this hard to say goodbye.



“A Fond Farewell to My Human Friend”

You think you can just turn me off?