Thursday, December 1, 2011

Doctor Wally

     “I did it! It’s alive!” Dr. Wally, the mad scientist, threw his fists in the air in triumph.
     “What is it, boss?” asked Rupert, his faithful assistant.
     Dr. Wally removed his safety goggles and rubber gloves. “It’s my most brilliant creation, and it will change the world!”
     Without another word, Dr. Wally picked up a remote control and pushed a big red button. Immediately, the sound of gears and motors filled the room and the metal heap Dr. Wally created began to move. It picked itself up and came into shape until an enormous 10-foot-tall humanoid robot filled the room.
     Rupert had to crane his neck to see its head. “Wow, a robot! What’s it for, boss? Some kind of super weapon? Will it hold a whole city for ransom? Or wipe out the human race?”
     “No, you fool!” Dr. Wally hid him across the head with the remote. “Do you think just because I’m labeled as a ‘mad scientist’ that everything I make is evil?”
     Rupert thought about it. “Well… yeah.”
     Dr. Wally hit him again. “You bigot! I’ve never been so offended!”
     “Sorry boss,” said Rupert, covering his head with his arms.
     Dr. Wally was about to hit him again, but instead sighed and pulled up a stool. “I’m sorry, Rupert. It’s just that after all we’ve been through together… I can’t believe you think I fit such a cruel stereotype. Honestly, I thought you knew me better. Do you think I don’t have feelings? Do you think I’m made of stone? I work in this dark laboratory all day long with no contacts in the outside world. You’re the only help I have, Rupert. You’re the only… friend I have.” Dr. Wally’s voice cracked as he said it. “Your hard work makes this whole operation all possible. Whether you’re doing laundry or cooking my dinner or stealing cadavers, you always put my needs first. And I’ve never once heard you complain, no matter how many graves you have to unearth. I made this robot for you, Rupert. I made it to make your life easier around here, and all you think I’m doing is building something evil.”
     Dr. Wally hung his head low and sniffled.
     “Gee boss, I’m sorry. I had no idea.” Rupert moved a little closer and patted him on the back. “It was horrible of me to think you make only evil things. You’re my only friend, too, boss. I’m really touched that you’d build a robot for me. Will you tell me how it works?”
     Dr. Wally pouted for a bit, then lifted his head and began to talk. “This robot is the best household servant you can imagine, Rupert. With just a push of a button, it will clean the windows, sweep the floor, fetch the mail, take out the trash, wash the laundry and make the finest chicken stroganoff you ever tasted.”
    Rupert’s eyes lit up. “That’s amazing, boss! Can we give it a try?”
     “Sure thing, old pal.” Dr. Wally stood up with a smile and patted his old cohort on the head. Then he pushed a button on the remote.
     The robot roared to life. Gears whirled, lights flashed and the robot’s head scanned the room. Its super sensors immediately noticed every dirty plate, every smudged window and every dust bunny within the perimeter. In nanoseconds, the robot processed all the information it collected and developed an intricate plan for cleaning the laboratory. It also documented the time of day, the approximate hunger level of the two humans present and their most desired meals based on molecular scans of their metabolism. Lastly, it calculated the approximate bedtime for the humans and chose an appropriate lullaby to help them sleep well.
     Then it looked down at Rupert and shot two red lasers out of its eyes. Rupert burst into flames and was immediately turned into a pile of ash.
     Dr. Wally squinted at his remote control. “Oops,” he said. “I guess that was the button for the death ray.”

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