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1972 - Klatu Not Wired for Jet Lag. Klatu, the robot hailed as the housewifes dream, is suffering from jet lag. That at least is the explanation given by his creator, Mr. Tony Reichelt, for Klatus erratic behaviors since he arrived in Sydney. He blamed the long flight from America, a monstrous hangover from a six - pack of motor-oil and difficulty adjusting to the Australian climate. Klatu is a 4000 dollar robot who can do more than walk and talk. He can be programmed to vacuum the floors. polish the furniture, walk the dog and even babysit. He can meet when they arrive for dinner, take their coats. pour them drinks and help you tidy up afterwards. But in one embarrassing incident Klatu malfunctioned while Mr. Reichelt was demonstrating his abilities - and poured a tray of drinks over some guests. The he refused his favorite conocotion - motor oil on the rocks - he switched himself off. Mr. Reichelt performed a minor operation - and Klatu is now working or again, he hopes. Mr Reichalt has spent more then two million dollars and research for 10 years developing him. He said domestic androids would be available in Austrialia within two years for less then 4000 dollars. Photo shows Klatu shows he is a gentlemen by carrying hostess Elizabeth Nelsons luggage on his arrival in Sydney. (Credit Image: (c) Keystone Pictures USA/ZUMAPRESS.com/Mary Evans)
Handbag

 

Please – let there be no misunderstanding, the item worn

clearly belongs to her, I make no claim to ownership. I too

am merely here to adorn, to serve this photo-op, to please –

although I could tease of course, pretend I don’t want to let

go, having held it in my lap throughout the long flight, (she

did make a joke about not getting too attached) continue the

jest, add something of my own to the occasion, so reporters

waiting at arrivals will note how we appeared together, even

if we stood apart – like separate items to an overall outfit.

 

Yes, for I am now to be an integral part of her days to come –

each morning I will serve them breakfast, (she has a partner)

see both off to work with a happy smile; clothe and organise

the children, there will be lunchboxes to fill, the school-run to

accomplish, other Moms or their surrogates to meet and greet

who will note I carry her handbag as instructed to display the

designer label; I’m told there will be chop and change to show

off her range. I hope I can play the part satisfactorily, they will

wave goodbye, asking, “Will you be here again tomorrow…?”

 

 

© Pete Mullineaux

Picture 13139181, unattributed photograph, 1972, image copyright Mary Evans / Keystone Pictures USA/Zumapress.com

 

 

Pete Mullineaux lives in Galway, Ireland where he teaches global issues in schools through poetry and drama. He’s published four poetry collections, most recently How to Bake a Planet (Salmon, 2016), “a gem” (Poetry Ireland Review).  A New & Selected will be published in 2021. He’s also written three teaching resources including Just a Second: Exploring Global Issues through Drama & Theatre (Afri, 2016), and Interdependence Day: Teaching the Sustainable Development Goals through Drama is due from Afri in 2020. Three radio plays have been produced on Irish radio (RTE) including the sci-fi themed Butterfly Wings starring Owen Roe and Karen Ardiff. His work has been featured and discussed on RTE’S Arena, Ireland’s leading arts/culture programme. His debut novel Jules & Rom: Sci-fi meets Shakespeare, featuring an android Romeo, has just been released as an e-book by Troubador Publishing (2020).