Saturday, January 24, 2009

42. Automata (The Conet Project, 4xCD; Music Box: Authentic Music of the Gay 90's; Wound Up Opera Played by Rare Antique Music Boxes)


"asked for a smoke from an automata. he said "you are trying to quit." i said yeah. but i want a cigarette. he said "you are trying to quit." i said yeah, i know, c'mon man, i know what i'm doing. he said "you are trying to quit."

goddammit, sometimes i hate the automata."


got on the bus. three automata were in the back seat. i was reading my book so i was distracted and pulled the bell to stop one stop earlier. the busdriver slowed down, i looked up and realized my mistake. "sorry man, next stop please?" i called out. the busdriver shrugged. i looked back at the automata.

one said "he made a mistake."

another said "why did he make that mistake."

the third said "mistakes are made when one is not ready."

the first said "what are mistakes?"

the third said "lack of preparation."

the second said "we make our own luck."

where did the automata come from. why is it that there are so many?


what do automata say during sex? many do not speak. some say "the inscrutable psycho-physic nexus is identical in all innervation and lies outside the sphere of the will." some say that sex between automata is akin to the sense of dizziness in deaf-mutes. others say it is more like auditory hallucinations in deaf schizophrenics. automata are not helpful in such speculations. "i would rather not speak of that" they will say.


when the automata dance, it is serious. their eyes are on the middle distance. they are seeing a more perfect, more efficient world. the dancing of automata contains no wasted movement. it is beautiful and cold and brittle, like porcelain, like a secret glance, like an orchid dipped in liquid nitrogen.


"This is all we can say at present of the hypnotic subject's mental state,—a topic whose investigation will tax the wit, but certainly reward the industry, of the most ingenious psychologist who may devote himself to its elucidation." - from the journal of intelligence, a popular automata magazine.


much on the minds of the automata is the concept of the phantom limb, the feeling in amputees of the physical presence of their lost limbs. they ask, does it grasp? does it reach out to touch the face of the beloved? monographs are published and ignored by the rest of us. a page of such a monograph blew down my street and was pinned against a tree by the wind. i picked up and read it. it said, anger and love and sadness and joy and rapture. then it repeated those nine words in a different font; lucida sans, if i recall. that is all that was on the page.


automata flying airplanes. automata flying airplanes on the great circle routes. automata piloting the great ocean liners. automata in the trains beneath our cities. automata in motion, in progress.

8) (by Karl Bartos)

I asked the automata, "why am i here? why is my life like this?" The automata replied, "all calculations show that your life is wonderful". I smirked and said, "yeah, in theory." The automata became dark, metallic red and began spinning. Faster, faster and faster still, the automata spun and began to lift off the ground. I had been knocked on the floor by the extreme shift in pressure in the room due to the intense spinning of the automatia. Thats when a piece of debris, being sucked in from outdoors amongst other debris due to the pull by the spinning automata, flew in and stuck right on my chest. I grabbed it and looked. It was a Pamphlet for the Save A Child Foundation. I picked up the phone and called immediately.


the automata will not use the word 'appears.' the automata will always use the word 'is.' this is widely seen to be one of the distinguishing characteristics of the automata.

10) (by Sprinx)

The automata built for the human hospital had to be taken out of the urgent care and into the recovery ward due to her inability to decipher which human to care for first. Her outdated commands and machinery gave her incomplete data on pain level and probability of survival. The chief felt that rather than take her apart or melt her away, he'd rather have her complete monotonous tasks, like changing the sheets. It's not that he was concerned about the machine's feelings, rather he was more concerned about losing a piece of himself along with it. Although humans know that automatas don't feel or have souls, they become attached knowing that getting rid of an automaton is to get rid of memories that go along with it. A selfish act.


a questionnaire:

1. Your name, age, and address.
2. Date of amputation, and part lost.
3. Do you still feel the lost part? If you do not feel it now, for how long did you feel it after the amputation?
4. Are you in love? How would you describe this feeling?
5. How much of the limb can you feel, and how does the feeling differ from what it would be if the member were present?
6. If the apparent position changes of its own accord, can you assign any cause for such change?
7. Do you ever feel as if you had two imaginary legs in addition to a real one?
8. Can you, by consciously directing your attention to the lost part, change the intensity or quality of the feeling there?
9. How does love end, in your experience.
10. Can you, by making an effort of the will, succeed in making it seem to move into a different position? (Do you recognize as two distinct cases, imagining the change, and willing it?

et cetera.


a current bestseller: Are We Automata? the photo of the author on the dust jacket shows her in serious thought, yet with a playful twinkle in her eye. is she smug or is she genuinely amused?


the automata regard the concept of faith as being analogous to the concept of the phantom limb. in walter reed hospital, drifts of well-dressed automata blow down the halls, opening doors. they bring letters from loved ones. "honey, i wish i could be there," is a common opening in these letters. "i can't believe you would write that," is another. the automata read these letters to wounded soldiers in calming voices.


the automata have a second table of the elements. some assume it is how they map us. some assume otherwise. neither is fully correct.


the automata sing. the automata perform works of bach. the audience is confused. serialism, then post-serialism. the noted critic Anton M. writes in his journal upon returning home: "the voices of the automata are individually sweet but when massed in unison i found it almost unbearable... i would die to hear only their technique in full voice; but i would kill rather than to have to hear their perfect diction. never before have i heard the words, kyrie eleison christe eleison, spoken with such awful clarity." he takes to the bottle and dies some years later a worthless scoundrel.


i was approached by an automata on crutches on the Rue Guillaume James. his eyes were fever-bright. "i love you!" he shrieked. taking a step backward, i saw that his foot was badly mangled, blood blooming through his bandages. he screamed "i love you!" and fell forward in the gutter. he reached for me. "au secours!" i called! "m'aidez! gendarmes! gendarmes!"

1 comment:

Frances said...

Since people would have different tastes in music, not all people would wish to listen to classical on hold music which is one of the trends. They might opt for original music instead.