My robot is better than yours. I may, in fact, pop the best robot on earth (some scientists have said that my robot is actually better than a real robot’s robot). I’m not saying this to prove my superiority or draw attention to my most glaringly obvious of skills (although I wouldn’t call it a skill so much as a genius stroke of Darwinian evolution)—I’m saying this because I’ve been burdened by my amazing robot my entire life. My robot is my disease.
From the moment I emerged, bloody and screaming from my mother’s womb she resented me. Every time music would play my infant ears would perk up and my joints would become ridged, my tiny Michelin Man arms crunching back and forth in an adorable mechanical motion. My dad would say things like “my baby girl sure does pop a mean robot!” which only made my mother hate me more. She had won my father over with her robot in the 70s, and she never got over the fact that my dad admired my robot more than hers.
Growing up, life was no different—I attracted scorn everywhere I went, from high school formals to my friend’s birthday parties. Eventually, people stopped inviting me to events where there would be dancing, knowing that my robot would upstage theirs. I felt alienated and morose, popping my saddest robot alone in my room at night to Prince’s ‘1999’, tears rolling effortlessly down my cheeks. I never understood why being gifted had to be so hard.
I began studying robots closely, from Woody Allen’s turn in Sleeper to Ross’ flawless representation in Friends. As an adult, I started going to clubs alone, popping my robot in the middle of dance floors that would inevitably clear as the other patrons felt dwarfed by my otherworldly robot abilities. Eventually I started getting kicked out by security because I was bad for business, so I took my robot to the streets—as hard and unforgiving as it is, concrete couldn’t run away from me, and that was a comforting thought.
Pounding pavement and without a tune to bend to, I had hit rock bottom. Then, one fateful day in 2004, as I was minding my own business slash blowing people’s minds with my exquisite robot, two weird looking French dudes wearing space helmets approached me. One of them followed me very closely as I robot-moon-walked (don’t try it at home, kids) across the sidewalk. His voice was low as he grabbed my arm, “we are robot too, oui?”
My breath caught in my throat and my dance was stunted as the two men pressed towards me.
“We have been watching your robot dance,” said the second man gruffly.
“Would you like a bite of my baguette?” offered the first man, pushing the long stick of bread into my hands. I was wide-eyed and speechless. I absentmindedly gnawed on the end of the baguette as the second helmeted man spoke again.
“We are in amazing electro band oui? They call us Daft Punk. They are idiots. We would like to make song for you. We call this song the ‘Robot Rock.”
Needless to say, by 2005 I was famous. French people everywhere were jumping to my anthem and before long the whole world was moving to my groove. My illness had become my morphine—the extreme talent that had smothered me my whole life had finally given me the pretence to achieve. I was born this way (Gaga said it!) and I am sick of squandering my extreme luck. Now I pop my robot whenever I can—I even taught Usher some of his moves!
Some people still hate on me but I know they’re just jealous they can’t robot like me. But now, instead of crying like I used to (it rusts my joints) I give those haters my best robot wave, a frigid turn and let them watch my tight android butt as I robot away.