Repression and Robots
The story of Rosie and Jane
Nobody can hear a scream in the vacuum of space, or so they say. Just to be safe, Jane always made sure that only Rosie was in the house while she screamed her frustrations. No point in upsetting the rest of the family, after all. If Rosie heard her, she never said anything about it, so the tradition of letting the vacuuming robot drown out her shouts and sobs slowly became habit.
On the surface, Jane had everything: an amazing home in the sky with all the bells and whistles, a loving husband, two sweet children, and an active social life. This world she lived in was far better than anything she could have dreamed...but she was bored. Most of her life was spent wandering around in a deep state of apathy. There was nothing at all for her to do as a housewife, nothing to keep her entertained or interested. With all of these new appliances that were invented, Jane always wondered why the role of housewife never changed. What used to take women all day to complete was now available in seconds at the touch of a button. It was difficult to imagine herself as anything other than obsolete.
The robot maid she purchased for the home, was picked out solely as a companion. Rosie's personality was more alive and realistic than any of those she called a friend. Her husband was certainly nothing too wonderful. He spent all his time complaining about other people living their lives, and trying to take away any hopes that their daughter, now almost grown, might have in finding a better life than Jane's. Most of her husband's hopes lay with their son, who was at least more mature than his father! His job was far from taxing, but he complained about it to no end. He, at least, was able to get out of the house, and had a purpose in life! In truth, she found him insufferable.
She thought back to when they met. She was just 16 years old, and he was 23. He was her best chance at getting off the ground, and moving into the smog and pollution free sky. Jane knew he only saw her as a trophy, but her young mind thought that it would be an acceptable trade: comfort and safety for the use of her body.
She was no simpleton. She could see where the Earth was going. Most of her time, until she met her husband, was spent in the lab, studying different ways to combat the effects her fellow humans had on the environment. It seemed impossible. In fact, so many of her fellow science-minded peers were turning to the world of gadgets instead, preferring to find easy fixes instead of difficult changes.
In the end she saw there was no where to go but up, and she hitched a ride on the first simple minded man who could take her there.
Little did she know: SHE was the fool, not her husband.
Its true, the world below their luxury apartments was quickly becoming an uninhabitable wasteland. Jane was much better off where she was. On the ground, people were becoming monsters. Fighting each other for the scraps that fell off the buildings sitting high in the sky. World War III was the major turning point, where America, with all of its declining wealth and stock pile of nuclear weapons, set about to take over the rest of the world. As they used to say, third times a charm; and Jane's fellow countrymen succeeded where Hitler, Stalin, and many others failed. They brought the world to it's knees, and, in a flurry of violence, the world was now 99% comprised of people who looked just like her family. No one who "looked different" was allowed in any kind of society, and especially not in the sky. It was sickening.
Jane was glad that she could spare her children the horrors of living on the ground, but was so sad to hear her son spout off a twisted version of history, created by the victors, and to see her husband do his best to keep his daughter submissive so she could be a good wife some day.
If only he would work the same hours that people used to, 100 years ago. Then she wouldn't have to worry about his influence on the children so much. If it weren't for her purposefully breaking the gadgets in their house, she would never get a moments rest from him! Plus, breaking things gave her something to do when she was all screamed out.
The sound of the vacuum came to a sudden halt, shocking Jane out of her morose tail-spin. Rosie, ever the observant friend, began to set up all of their favorite distractions by the love seat. Jane came over, turned on their favorite soap, and the two ladies sat down together to turn their brains off for a time. The kids will be home soon, and she could not allow them to see her so troubled and unhappy, after all.
About the author
Hello there. I write things. Sometimes good things. Mostly, I write to find myself. If I can entertain you in the process, then that's just the derivative icing on the proverbial cake!