Today worked out in the warehouse at the back of my office, where I met James. We were fixing tags on garments that had been printed wrong by putting stickers on over them. There were hundreds of thousands of tags to fix. He told me stickers annoyed him, which inspired this story.
Every Homebot has a kind system and a good temperament chip, or so says the box. Jim knows better though, he works in the warehouse fixing all the bot’s emotional systems that malfunction before they hit the shops. The bots often threw tantrums before he fixed them, but soon they were kind and placid as a Homebot should be. Jim was happy in the warehouse away from most people. People scared him, people judged him. As long as he fixed the bots consistently, he’d be left alone to his own devices in the warehouse. But one day a bot threw a spanner in his works. The bot acted just like him.
“That’s okay, I knew I wasn’t good enough,” it said when he told it he needed to make system adjustments.
They talked for much too long, and at the end, Jim still hadn’t changed his systems. Instead he put it back in the box.
“You are good enough, just as you are, Homebot #4000,” he said.