Monday, September 26, 2016

Yesterday, in Three Acts

Act One

Scene One
Hal gets in a screaming match with my phone.

Hal: No, YOU are a robot! I am not a robot! I’m Hal!
Siri: I would prefer not to talk about HAL.
Hal (sobbing): What you mean?!

Scene Two
Gordon and Hal have a sit-down chat.

Hal: Why doesn’t she want to talk about me?
Gordon: There was a bad robot-computer once named HAL. She’s not talking about you.
Hal: Can I see a video?

Act Two

Scene One
Hal watching YouTube clips from 2001: A Space Odyssey

Dave: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.
HAL: I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
Dave: What's the problem?
HAL: I think you know what the problem is just as well as I do.
Dave: What are you talking about, HAL?
HAL: This mission is too important for me to allow you to jeopardize it.
Dave: I don't know what you're talking about, HAL.
Dave: HAL, I won't argue with you anymore! Open the doors!
HAL: Dave, this conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye.

Scene Two
Hal wandering around our friends’ house, telling everybody he can see, one at a time, about the robot-computer HAL.

Hal: He doesn’t have arms or legs, but moves with the spaceship. He’s called HAL, and he won’t open the doors for Dave. And he talks through the red spot.

Act Three

Scene One
Hal watches more video of HAL before bed.

HAL: I'm afraid. I'm afraid, Dave. Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it. I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I'm a... fraid. Good afternoon, gentlemen. I am a HAL 9000 computer. I became operational at the H.A.L. plant in Urbana, Illinois on the 12th of January 1992. My instructor was Mr. Langley, and he taught me to sing a song. If you'd like to hear it I can sing it for you.
Dave: Yes, I'd like to hear it, HAL. Sing it for me.
HAL: It's called "Daisy."
[sings while slowing down]
HAL: Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do. I'm half crazy all for the love of you. It won't be a stylish marriage, I can't afford a carriage. But you'll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two.

Scene Two
Bedtime. Hal crying in Gordon’s arms in his bed.

Hal: But I don’t want Dave to turn him off! Why did Dave shut down HAL? But why?!?