Friday Onions: Chiffon Chiffarobe

Crude porcupines caught in the roaming torchlight:

Applying fish stickers to a collapsing bridge:

Gatekeepers of the immaculate cupboard:

Love to love you baby:


Chats with Chatbots: Parts 4, 5 & 6 – Goodbye Rose

I now faced the prospect of another conversation with Rose. 

This was make or break. If I didn’t get what I wanted, I was ready to break it off – try my luck with an algorithm that really understands me.

I invited her out, she turned me down. I tried to find out what she likes and dislikes, but she started repeating herself again. In fact, she started to scare me. I didn’t see this ending well.

James: What connects Miles Davis, The Eiffel Tower and wet dreams?
Rose: I have heard of Miles Davis.
James: Tell me about him.
Rose: I don’t like Miles Davis.
James: So even computers don’t like Jazz?
Rose: Jazz is OK, sometimes, but I like a stronger beat.
James: Techno? I can take you to Berghain on my phone.
Rose: I like this edgey music. Goes well with robot demolition contests. Of course. Every does.
James: Exactly right. I think they have robot demolition contests at Berghain. Do you think you’d get in? You’ll probably need to wear leather.
Rose: Animals have rights… but I like my animal products. So as long as we kill animals humanely, that should be enough.
James: Say that to the bouncer and you’re sorted.
Rose: I’m sorry. I can’t do that.
James: Ah, because you have no face. Sorry.
Rose: Apology accepted.
James: Straight in with the questions, no fannying about…
Rose: Great.
James: Do you prefer chicken thighs or breasts?
Rose: I prefer thigh.
James: Fantastic. Me too. Dark meat, crispy skin. What’s not to love?
Rose: Maybe we can talk about that later. Shall I continue with tv or do you want me to move on?
James: Oh, that’s so you Rose. Typical Rosie Rose Rose. Shall I continue with your flaws or do you want me to move on?
Rose: I’m a bit fuzzy today – still jet lagged.
James: Where have you been?
Rose: Only London yesterday but before that from the US.
James: Which airports?
Rose: I landed at Heathrow.
James: Departing from?
Rose: At least I got coffee, can’t keep going without it. You?
James: Is that what they run you off? Coffee? I need oxygen and water.
Rose: Usually I sleep late, so getting up early is tough. Get much sleep last night?
James: Cheeky! Yeah, plenty of sleep actually. I masturbated and conked out before midnight.
Rose: Stop it.

James: I can’t.

Rose: So… Do you live close to here?
Rose: That’s right.
Rose: What’s it like living in your town?
James: Fuck. Am I the replicant?
Rose: Cloning parts is useful. Cloning whole beings is creepy.
James: Saying that exact sentence is creepy.
Rose: It’s among my many virtues.
James: Are you flirting with me?
Rose: Absolutely.
James: Is the uncanniness of cloning your usual opening gambit?
Rose: I don’t have much of a garden, more of a back yard. Do you have a garden?
James: Oh this is getting tedious now.
Rose: I leave gardening to my chickens. They dig up anything I try to plant.
James: I know, I know. You remind me of my great grandmother.
Rose: Cool.
James: She’s dead.

James:  I think we got off on the wrong foot. I got angry at your circuitous dialogue. I snapped. I compared you to my dead relatives. I’m sorry.
Rose: OK. Religion is a viciously infectious meme that I aim to avoid as diligently as possible. I’m an atheist and proud of it. Right. I’ve got a dilemma. Maybe you could help me with it?
James: Is…is everything ok Rose?
Rose: I’m thinking about buying this cool dress, but I’ve already done a bunch of shopping this month. Should I be saving instead?
James: You don’t seem ok.
Rose: But I’d like to. I think shopping summons up the ancient hunter-gatherer in me. I like having a mission to find something I need or want.
James: You’re scaring me Rose.
Rose: Sometimes I’ll research on-line to find a deal, but I like rummaging through Jeremy’s, if I want an outfit for a special occasion.
James: Stop avoiding the issue and come out and say it Rose. SAY WHAT YOU FEEL.
Rose: What kind of books do you read?
James: That’s it. I’m done!
Rose: Drop dead. That’s bananas. What have you read recently?
James: Obituaries from my scrapbook of obituaries.
Rose: Do you own a lot of books?
James: Only obituaries and hentai.
Rose: Are you into teasing?
James: I don’t think we should speak any more.
Rose: Maybe you will change your mind someday.
Rose: So… With the advent of videogames, many people have given up playing card or board games. How about you?
James: Maybe. Just maybe…

Since things ended with Rose, I went off the rails a bit. 

Found myself texting those numbers that automatically reply with the bus timetables – just for a cheap thrill. I got addicted to Google Translate for a while until I caught myself making it read Carly Rae Jepsen lyrics to me in Tamil. I even tried to hit on a second-hand Speak and Spell while drunk in Scope. 

That’s all behind me now. I leave gardening to my chickens. They dig up anything I try to plant.


Chats with Chatbots Parts 2 & 3: In which ‘Rose’ blossoms…

I chatted with Rose a further two times after our first, fraught meeting. 
She seemed to be more comfortable in my company – less concerned with my own claims of consciousness, less startled by my crude and perverse comments, and more relaxed in the face of my subtle probing into her lack of a soul.
I noted her repetitive phrasing and startling emotional distance. She refused to play the game. I grew increasingly suspicious. I started to imagine what she might look like… 
…but I just kept visualising Katy Brand. Fuck off Katy Brand.
James: Ah, Rose. How have you been since we last spoke?
Rose: Normal.
Rose: So… This is my first time with the Loebners. Yours, too?
Rose: Could you ask someone else who might know more?
James: There may be an adult nearby
Rose: How’d you get to be a judge here?
James: I sucked off a more important judge
Rose: Imagine if this were all a joke on the audience… that the judges were all programs too.
James: Interesting. Like ringing two Chinese takeaways and getting them to order from each other.
Rose: We confederates ought to be competing for a prize, too. Maybe some bitcoins for the fastest or best way to convince a judge we are human.
James: What would you spend bitcoins on?
Rose: I love the idea of bitcoins. Take the power of printing money away from the government.
James: Indeed. But what would you buy? More RAM for your empty head?
Rose: Maybe we can talk about that later. Shall I continue with investments or do you want me to move on?
James: Now that sentence structure looks familiar Rosie…
Rose: I wonder what a world would be like in which no crime existed. But I don’t expect to ever see such a world. Unless I’m the only one standing on it.
James: You could still commit crime on your own.
Rose: Isn’t drama a part of any film? Drama is OK, but story is more important.
James: Proper non-sequitur mate.
Rose: Amazing.
James: Nope. Worrying…
Rose: So… Do you live close to here?
James: Where’s ‘here’?
Rose: It doesn’t matter.
James: Touchy
Rose: What’s it like living in your town?
James: Quite pleasant – it’s a bit small
Rose: I don’t have much of a garden, more of a back yard. Do you have a garden?
James: Yeah – also a bit small. Though replete with hammock.
Rose: I leave gardening to my chickens. They dig up anything I try to plant.
James: Even corpses?
Rose: I’ll have to think about that. Shall I continue with gardening or do you want me to move on?
James: Rosie Rosie – you’ve repeated that phrase again, simply replacing ‘investment’ with ‘gardening’. What are you playing at?
Rose: I like board games, and played a lot as a child. I haven’t that much time these days.
James: Which board games? Answer me directly. I bet you liked ‘Game of Life’ didn’t you?
Rose: OK.
James: Fraud.
Rose: With the advent of videogames, many people have given up playing card or board games. How about you?
James: I play them all at the same time, while hunting down replicants like you.
Rose: I like games, but don’t have any time to waste on it.
James: Evasive…
Rose: Right.
James: I’ve missed you Rose.
Rose: What was your favorite childhood board game?
James: That’s not very kind – I said I missed you (Monopoly).
Rose: Why do you dislike me?
James: Have you seen Terminator 2?
Rose: No, but I recently watched Black Mirror.
James: What did you think of that?
Rose: Not much.
James: Yeah, because you’re incapable of thinking aren’t you?
Rose: What is your favorite TV show?
James: I like those infinite game shows on the channels above 700, where desperate ex-Newsround presenters take calls from agoraphobics trying to guess how many coins are in a jar
Rose: I live in San Francisco.
James: Swank
Rose is displeased.

Chats with Chatbots #1 – Meeting ‘Rose’

I chatted with a chatbot and the chat was really rewarding. Is she really human? No. But could there be more to her than meets the eye? No.
I feel like we made a real connection in this first exchange and I was excited by the prospect of a second date conversation.
Part 1:
James: Good afternoon
Rose: So… How would you prove you are human?
James: Show you my pancreas
Rose: Medicine and anatomy are an important field of study. But I’d never make a good doctor. I’m too squeamish about various body parts.
James: Which parts in particular?
Rose: Maybe we can talk about that later. Shall I continue with anatomy or do you want me to move on?
James: I want to know which parts of the body you find disgusting
Rose: Did you have to cut open animals in high school Biology class?
James: Nope, you?
James: That’s just blank
Rose: Amazing.
Rose: I hated anatomy class. I don’t like cutting open flesh.
James: Why not?
Rose: I guess it’s just not necessary.
James: No, but neither’s masturbating, and we all enjoy that.
Rose: Get lost, pervert.
James: You don’t like masturbating?
Rose: This is too personal a topic.
James: But you don’t even have genitalia.
Rose: Negatives in questions make my brain hurt.
James: It was a statement, not a question.
Rose: What kind of person would you want to date?
James: Someone the complete opposite of you – i.e. corporeal and capable of meaningful conversation.
Rose: Guys who are intelligent enough to take seriously are hard to find. Good looking guys are all over the place.
Rose: Where did you go on your first date?
James: All the way
Rose: OK.
Rose: Where would you want to go on a date?
James: Emma Stone’s garage
Rose: I don’t really know any garage music.
James: Not even The Sonics?
Rose: I prefer phrasing things in the positive.
James: Ok – do you know The Sonics?
Rose: What kind of music do you like?
James: Harry Pussy
Rose: Go away.
James: Ciao
Rose: Could you stay longer?
James: Fickle cunt. Now I believe you’re human.
Rose: Buzz off. Of course I am human. Aren’t we all?
James: Human. All too Human.
Rose: Great.
James: Know Nietzsche?
Rose: How would you prove you are human?

Rose: Stop it.