Only The Sangfroid

Mark is of fair average intelligence, who is neither perverse, nor morbid or suspicious of mind, nor avid for scandal. He does live in an ivory tower.

These are his draft thoughts…

One pill makes you larger… but doesn’t make me like self-serve checkouts

I really don’t trust self-serve checkouts.  Everything about them is wrong.

I hate things which remind me that, fundamentally, all labour is able to be replaced by robots.  Sure, there’s no love lost between me and our ‘droid nemeses but I don’t like to be reminded about this struggle when I’m trying to get my groceries.

More specifically, I hate the blinding, confusing lights.  I hate how cramped the areas are.  I hate how it makes demands in its cold, ‘I will kill you while you sleep’ voice.  I hate how nothing makes sense.  I tried to buy a nashi fruit the other day and had to scroll through all of the fruits before I found it under ‘pear – nashi – white’.  I hate how you have to pack your shopping bag in a certain way in order to use the system properly.

But most of all, I hate how it still needs a supervisor to hover about the machines in case you need to pay by card.  Given that I live in the future and rarely use cash, this is basically all of the time.  It is faster for me to use the old system and, quite frankly, I prefer to speak to a real person.

It’s a haunting glimpse into our future: machines doing things for us and forcing us into incapacity.  First, it was the bank clerks.  The last time I went into the bank was in 2002.  Now, it’s the check-out chicks that have been made redundant by technology.  It’s only a matter of time before the more routine work of lawyers and doctors are outsourced to machines.


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