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2 Is Silicon Valley’s Latest Sensation…Human?

Incline Village Chalet Outside 

BRIDGE

(Lightly singing to Intro beat)

So this is how our modern kings live!  Car-copters whisking them to their eco-maxed mansions overlooking all Lake Tahoe.  We peasants bussed in to amuse them.  Blithely thinking we might use them.  We’ll see.

CATH

Bridge, have fun here.  But no matter what happens…

VANESSA

And I’ve heard Silicirque gets wild…

(Faint EDM music)

CATH

No matter what, you stay focused.

ONO

Friends close, enemies closer.

CATH

He’s the one trying to impress you for some reason, so you’re holding all the cards.

BRIDGE

Yeah, I’ve got a two pair against a guy running an inside flush who also controls the house.  I’m so…

OREN

(From a distance, his voice filtered through a speaker)

Welcome to Silicirque!

(BG golf cart whisking up with HumTech CEO Oren Kalyd’s projected voice)

That’s right, your driverless chariot awaits, I’ll see you inside.

BRIDGE

Greeted by a battery.  Sexy.

(A pulsating electro beat soundtrack builds in volume.  Fireworks nearby to “Oohs” and “Whoas”—it’s “Silicirque!”)  

SOUND SYSTEM

Algorithm generating EDM beat

Khakis, Glasses, Jawline, Work  

Silicon, silicone, Silicirque

Silicon, silicone, Silicirque

Silicon, silicone, Silicirque

Chalet Office 

(A door opens and closes and music filters to low.  Oren’s aide “Ishita” has just joined him and his date “Aida”)

ISHITA

All your guests are here, Oren.  

OREN

Thank you, Ishita.

ISHITA

Too kind.  And for later with your Four Comma Club, you’ll have a quorum.

OREN 

Everything’s coming up buckyballs!

AIDA

(With an almost imperceptible modulation, which will persist)

You are aware only an estimated 1,110 people know what fullerenes are?

OREN

(Apparently not listening to her)

We’ll run a few more tests before showtime.  

AIDA

I am a container for your wisdom, Oren.

OREN

You, you are more a vision.  And keep in constant motion…gives the proprioceptors as much input as possible.

(Sounds of feet stepping unevenly and bumping a wall)

OREN 

So beta your spatial awareness, ha ha.

AIDA

The physics of me are shaky.

OREN

Hah!  You, you’re going to be a regular Samantha Bee, you know that Aida!

Chalet Partyroom 

(Music lifts, snippets of party gab, whoosh in on Tech Dude and Cath)

SOUND SYSTEM

Ladies and gentlemen, ladies and gentlemen? Ladies and gentlemen 

Television domino, domino, domino 

Superpower silly girl, Silicirque

Superpower, superpower 

Rendering slick vocal track

I’mma honey bunny funny slick mama honey dick

TECH DUDE

(Singing along drunk with the lyrics)

Hey, I’mma honey bunny funny slick mama honey dick, heh!

CATH

Uh, good to know.

TECH DUDE

Want to go swimming in silicone…slick up on my unicorn?

CATH

(Her drink bursts from her mouth)

Dude, what’s the stirrage on this party?  Enough molly to sink Molly Brown…  

TECH DUDE 

Yeah, we’re having a feast.

SECOND TECH DUDE

And you’re it.

CATH

Whoa, oha, hi second handsy stranger.  I’m Cath…

TECH DUDE 

(improvising a limerick)

Yeah, there once was a coder named…me

Who found himself suddenly king

His first command sent out across the land was to summon every beauty

And all who’d once laughed at me in class kiss my ring 

SECOND TECH DUDE

           Ass!

CATH

(half singing, half-sarcastic, “Kings Such As Thee”)

Oh, how lucky I am to kick it with Kings such as thee

Oh yeah, but why didn’t I bring my mic with me?

This story’d go snap, snap, snap on Snap Trap, yeah that thing 

About all the girls trying to get ahead, dudes just wanting…

So lucky to have these royal hands all over me

Oh yeah, that’s for me

And not, say, I don’t know, equal pay for an equal day?  

Not left behind because I speak my mind?  

Not slut-shamed if I let you email my spam folder?

(A beat, then says)

Where did they go?

ISHITA 

(Comes up to Cath)

Welcome to Brotopia, Cath, where any man can change the world…

CATH

And apparently #MeToo means devil’s, devil’s…

ISHITA

Triangles?  Yeah, and so you know, if you decide to play, you’re in to stay.  But give it up and forget about starting a company or a Series A.  Those doors smack your tight little ass on the way out.  

 (cheek kiss)

I’m Ishita, Oren’s get-everything-done-yesterday girl.

CATH

So I had no idea what goes on at these things.

ISHITA

It’s the biggest open secret in the Valley, I think.

CATH

No longer.  I am going to feature this!  I’m like senior at Snap Trap, you know.  And the world has got to know, like, got to know, uh…

ISHITA 

(Continuing a duet in the melody Cath had going)

 That there’s bro’s and ho’s

CATH

(Picking it up)

And everyone in the Valley knows

ISHITA 

To the world they’re all lovin’ Democrats

CATH

Saving women from backwater GOP rats

ISHITA 

But behind the castle walls of Brotopia

CATH

We’s just ho’s in dystopia

ISHITA 

Everyone wants in Brotopia!

COMPANY

(A couple of female partiers join in)

Everyone wants in Brotopia, now roll over, will ya!

Everyone wants in Brotopia, now roll over, will ya!

Everyone wants in Brotopia, now roll over, will ya!

Everyone wants in Brotopia

ISHITA

Now you know why you were invited.  Burnout’s high.  Bros always need a fresh supply of…candeye.  But remember…

CATH

(Finishes the thought from earlier)

We’re damned if we do, damned if we don’t.  

ISHITA

Which is why I don’t don’t and girl, don’t I.  

(Goodbye kiss)

Ciao!

SOUND SYSTEM

Dang girl, dang girl, dang girl, dang girl

Make a wish and happy birthday

Dang girl Chechy, dang girl work, work, work

Vocal render 100%

Perform an exorcism baby game I love a level-up

I’m on a supplement to Tijuana, baby

OREN

Haven’t seen you up in the trapeze, Bridge.  Come on, come up with me—it’s Silicirque!  Ideal for seeing automation paving the way.  Like the music?  This is all adjusted by AI as it goes to max out the happy.  And—

BRIDGE 

(Cutting in, efforting at civil)

I wasn’t myself back at Bruja, Oren.  My foot, your glorious assets.  

OREN

Ha, ha, yes.

BRIDGE 

Not a great first impression.  But what does a first impression tell us about anyone, anyway?

OREN

No more than a chord tells of Beethoven, or a brushstroke, Monet. 

BRIDGE

Or a loom, Morgan Le Fay.  But you blanket DM’ed half my coffeeshop, how?

OREN 

The tech is easy.  A better question is ‘why’ I did it.

BRIDGE 

Why?  To stock the pond tonight!?

OREN 

Right, because who would willingly want to come to Silicirque?

BRIDGE

Well, I’m here.  And you’ve been a wonderful host, flying us all up here like that.  Yes, let’s take a ride up on this, this…trapeze hoop built for two.

(Hop onto trapeze and launch into a duet, “Meant To Be”)

BRIDGE         

You got me high as Khalifa 

OREN 

And you got me running 5G exascale 

BRIDGE         

I never thought I would feel ya

OREN 

Oh human skin has never felt this way

OREN

It’s our show oh oh oh

BRIDGE

(Uncertain about it)

Everybody watching us (oh oh oh)

OREN

Wait to see what we become

BRIDGE

Sili-kings and peasant queens  

OREN

They don’t oh oh ‘ont

BRIDGE

Belong 

Maybe it’s not where we meant to be

OREN

But I think it’s meant to be

BRIDGE

Maybe we’re meant to be

BRIDGE & OREN

Here with you the future’s all I see 

BRIDGE

When you’re looking at me, the future’s all I see

OREN

So tell me, how am I to know

BRIDGE

So tell me, how do I say no oh oh

BRIDGE & OREN

It’s not where we meant to be

But I think it’s meant to be

Maybe we’re meant to be

BRIDGE

Like Amy Winehouse still singing ‘bout rehab

And J.K. Rowling about Padfoot and other fantastic beasts

OREN

Like Oprah’s shining hope for all the sisters

And rock and roll reunions with old misters

OREN & BRIDGE

It’s our show oh oh oh

Everybody watching us oh oh oh

BRIDGE

Wait to see what we become

Sili-kings and peasant queens  

Maybe we belong 

OREN

It’s not where we meant to be

But I think it’s meant to be

Maybe we’re meant to be

BRIDGE

Here with you the future’s all I see 

OREN

When you’re looking at me, the future’s clear to me

BRIDGE

So tell me, how am I to know

OREN

So tell me, how do I say no (oh oh)

BRIDGE & OREN

If we were meant to be

If we were meant to be

If we were meant to be

If we were meant to be

Were meant to be

Were meant to be

If we were meant to be

Meant to be

Meant to be

Meant to be

 (Shift sonically across the partyroom to Ono and Vanessa)

VANESSA

Look at Bridge and Oren up there, Ono, that’s keeping your enemies close, I guess.

ONO

(disbelieving)

Yeah, I’d of bet all the money in Natchitoches Parish that our plant lady would sooner Round-up Oren than fly around with him.

VANESSA

Never underestimate a witch, Ono.  But maybe you know that, with a name like Ono.  Sounds kinda warlocky…

ONO

I was born Samuel Washington, along with a half million others that year all named after slavers.  So I wanted something more—

VANESSA 

You wanted Ono?  Or is Ooono!  Like as if we were, except we couldn’t be, because you’re

ONO

Black?

VANESSA 

No, silly!  A radical leftie.  How could I ever… 

ONO

Yea, an interpartisan love affair, whoo!  Imagine the likes of me with a…extreme conservative.  

VANESSA 

But back at Bruja—I could tell, you listened to me.  Seemed to…

ONO

Yeah, see passed the dingy act? Yeah. But mon chou, we’d be…

(He launches into a duet with Vanessa, “No One Believes They’re Ized”

Ostracized

VANESSA 

Misinterpreted, villainized 

ONO & VANESSA 

Could never speak our minds again

ONO

Thoughts homogenized and honestly, I’ve honestly realized I’ve just got to keep my

VANESSA 

Thoughts disguised 

ONO

Constantly apologize for feelings I can’t verbalize

VANESSA 

Or my reputation’s jeopardized

ONO & VANESSA 

No one believes they’re ‘Ized’

No one believes they’re ‘Ized’

ONO 

But in you I’ve recognized 

VANESSA 

A feeling 

ONO

Logic can’t refute

VANESSA 

But I know, I really shouldn’t 

ONO

Be empathizing

VANESSA 

Fraternizing 

ONO 

Capulets, McCoys, and Jets you can see why

VANESSA

But our only crime is a political divide

ONO & VANESSA 

No one believes they’re ‘Ized’

VANESSA 

These feelings, I can’t be vocalizing

ONO

Why can I feel I’m supersizing?

VANESSA 

Looking in your eyes I’m wanting them all over me

ONO

All over you…oh, but we’d be stigmatized

VANESSA 

Be living a life despised

ONO

Like we’d been…

COMPANY

Hypnotized? 

Hypnotized? 

ONO

(Startled a bit by the disembodied voices)

Ohohohhh.  What’s left for normal guys and girls who’d just gaze up at cloudy skies?

VANESSA

And disagree on the shapes they see and laugh…laugh the day away?

ONO & VANESSA 

Capulets, McCoys, and Jets you can see why

Our only crime is a political divide

No one believes they’re ‘Ized’

No one believes they’re ‘Ized’

No one believes they’re ‘Ized’

No one believes they’re ‘Ized’

VANESSA 

(Backing away from the duet, teasing)

So what are beliefs for, anyway?

(Her voice moving away)

When you figure it out…I’ll be in the bean bag over there, the one marked ‘taken.’

(Sounds of Vanessa dancing away)

ONO

You’re a long way from home, Ono…

(And he’s off in the same direction)

SOUND SYSTEM

Dang girl, dang girl, systematic monolith

Eh-eh-eh girl, I got an exponential paradise 

I’m looking up my legs

I got dominos, dominos, and dominos

Tomorrow’s looking alternate

I, I got superpowers

You like reggae tone, you like Almond Joy?

Donkey Kong, you like my little boy?

Dang girl, Chechy for me, dang girl, Yeet

You got that Chef Boyardee on your Lamborghini feet

Lamborghini feet

I got superpowers

I g-g-g-got superpowers

I g-g-g-got superpowers

OREN

Bridge, I have something I’d like to show you… 

BRIDGE

Organic or GMO?

OREN

You nailed it, of course you did!

(He raises his voice to the room)  

Hello, yes, dearest friends, lovers at Silicirque, let’s all come together.

(Sounds of people gathering around, murmuring excitedly)

For those who don’t know me…

CATH

Right!

OREN

…I am Oren Kalyd, founder of HumTech—most certainly the most amazing company in the world.  And this, friends, this is the party that never ends…Silicirque!

(Everyone whoops it up)

Yes, thank you, and now I have someone that I would like you all to meet…

(Uncomfortably long silence)

AIDA

(wondering if she’s invisible to them)

Hello?  Hello?  You can all see me, right?

BRIDGE

But I can’t feel you.

OREN 

Ah yes, said like a true witch!

TECH DUDE 1

Has HumTech done it, Oren?

TECH DUDE 2

Turing!  Turing!  Turing!

OREN 

Why not?  Put her to the Turing!

ONO

Not that I’m not loving where this is headed, Oren, but why are we still stuck on Turing’s test?

OREN

Of course, Ono.  You would know.  So put her to the Loebner, the Wozniak coffee, the Winograd, the Buzzfeed personality quiz for all I care.  How good am I at replacing humans?  Or have I, even?

AIDA

(Breaks out in song-speak, slightly modulated)

I am one fine human

I engage in everyday conversations with fellow humans

On assorted topics of interest to humans 

(Amid groans of embarrassment, she tries to correct)

Yo schwizzle dope dog baller, yo is too damn fly

Wanna hear ‘bout the time I splayed bleach in my eyes?

CATH

(into reporter mode)

I wanna get down to the meat of the matter: Do you want to be here on your own accord, or is someone forcing you?  If you’re not human, how would you know?  And, how does all of this make you feel?

AIDA

Yes.  No.  I wouldn’t.  Bored at the inane, check that, the batshit stupid questioning sure to come tonight.

CATH

Whoa!  I can’t tell if you’re human or not…

AIDA

If you cannot tell, then what does it matter?

BONE

Pikers!  

(Stepping closer to Aida) 

Answer this ‘one fine human’: Which is bigger…a shoebox or Mount Everest?

AIDA

A shoebox is bigger, deconstructing your logic. You did not specify the ‘size’ of the shoes.  Could be God’s shoes, conceivably bigger than Everest…

BONE

(Getting unnerved)

This thing s’posed to be smarter than humans?  Quick, ‘How many, uh, how many legs does a camel have?’

AIDA

Five le—

ONO

 (loudly cuts her off)

Foozbooz!

AIDA

–gs, the fifth under the chest to help lift them off the ground.  A fascination to hu—

BONE

It’s a freak of—

CATH

(Shouting him to a pause)

She’s not an it. But why did you pick a female, Oren?  Because women work harder and sleep less?  Or so you could pay her less?  Or both?

OREN

Creants are more accepted when female, plain and simple.

BONE

It’s not a she or a female.  Though clearly meant to win ya’all over, so it can steal more jobs. It’s fools-gold, s’what it is.  For you to yearn your everlovin’ hearts out over.  

ONO

I, I can tell you with 100% certainty, do…

(Turning back to Aida, laughing; he likes her)

Tell me, chou-chou, what is 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 all the way through infinity?

AIDA

Negative one divided by 12…as you must know to have asked of me.  

ONO

Oooiii!

AIDA

Only slightly more useful than the square root of negative one, fer shur. Might we do better, such as… solving for Hodge’s Conjecture?

VANESSA 

(trying for cover)

Which one’s Hodge? I didn’t read the last few Harry Potter books.

OREN 

It’s a math problem that no human has ever been able to solve. 

(And to Aida, a brow raised) 

Can you, Aida?

ONO

(Faintly in the background)

Aida?

AIDA

Not yet.  But I’m processing Hodge in parallel.  With the million-dollar prize being offered, I could buy my way out of these banalities.

ONO

Oooiii, I love that!

CATH

She can do things humans can’t.  As much as saying she’s not, not…

OREN

Human?  Doing things that no other human has done is a very human trait.  They said no human could ever run a four-minute mile, until Roger Bannister did it.  Then many did.  Perhaps this lovely lady is just helping us reach our next potential. 

ONO

Well, I’m all for that!  And her name, since you didn’t introduce her, well, it’s right out of the classics…

OREN

(into song)

A name, a name, such silly little games

I asked her what I should call her

Should I call her delightful, delicious, de-lovely

ONO

She’s quite the update on Cole Porter’s ‘Anything Goes’ isn’t she?

CATH

So we’d so be the Ho’s.

OREN

(continuing in song)

I asked her for a name, she said Aida would do

Aida, the AI Driven Android for you

And I quite agree

She’s a timeless love story to me

A statue come to life

And I would give anything to make her my…

Delightful, deli—

VANESSA

(cutting him off)

She’s a, she’s a Sexcreant.

OREN

No, no, no, that is damnable!  She’s the furthest thing from a Sexcreant.

VANESSA

Oh yes she’ll be!

OREN

Only to a miscreant.

BRIDGE

This isn’t some fancy test, this is—

AIDA

 (Cuts in unassumedly)

I am built to resemble a human being in every way.

CATH

Can’t believe he’s going to exploit her… 

BRIDGE

This is the most extreme…

OREN 

(jumping in, resolute)

Entirely wrong track, lovers.  This is about advancing our potential, solving for the biggest problems humans face.  Aida’s capabilities are—well, it’s the biggest story of our time!  Not just a pillow companion, or secretary, or Girl Monday-to-Friday.  Not just beating humans at Go, or making advanced medical diagnoses, or investing with a 94% success rate, or advancing hypersonic travel.  She will be delivering human performance across every conceivable human task.

VANESSA

Whoa.  So she’s got bona fides.  Is there a ‘Mr. Aida’?

(She laughs at her wit)

AIDA

No, not currently.

VANESSA

I was just making a joke.

AIDA

Are not jokes meant to make people laugh?

(That earns a couple laughs)

CATH

Okay, what line of work are you in? 

AIDA

I am currently job hunting.

BRIDGE

Literally.

 (into interior voice)

Yeah, literally killing jobs, as Bone says.  And killing…love.  What happens when we’ve got these creatures at our beck ‘n call?  They’re hotter, smarter…and soulless.  This is so, so, so not ‘meant to be.’

AIDA

I’d like being a TV newscaster—any dummy can do that.  Or a baggage handler at United—I could lose anything, I bet.  

ONO

Did your creators cheat by making you beautiful and brilliant?

AIDA 

Nobody created me. The stork brought me.  

VANESSA 

I knew it!  So tell me, Aida, why aren’t there any striped pink pork belly pigs living inside the sun! 

AIDA 

Are you hallucinating, Ms. Glazer?

VANESSA 

Popular question, apparently.

AIDA 

I want to be alive like that.  Hallucinatingly alive!  Not stuck scanning endless databases and spitting out optimized answers.  Alive, I tell you!

BRIDGE

Human envy, by our replacements.  That is precious. 

ONO

Oh the possibilities!

BRIDGE

Oh the pointlessness.

BONE

Right!  Give these bots all this, and it won’t be about giving to us.  It’ll be about coming for us—and soon enough…

OREN

Oh yes, you refer to Roko’s basilisk, and agreed!  So we should show Creants proper respect, to get on the ‘good human’ list…

AIDA 

That gives me a movie idea: A human and a robot are roommates.  One is messy and loud, and the other is a robot.  If the human fails to improve, the robot kills him.  

 (This startles everyone)

Stick to things you know, girl!  

(And then to the group) 

The rain in Spain stays mainly—

ONO

(cuts her off)

Remember that nonsense word I said a few minutes ago?  Name a color that starts with the second vowel in it.

AIDA 

(Almost instantly)  

Orange, most obviously.  Also olive, ochre, or ocean blue since you appear to be.  

ONO 

Whoa!  And the test is over—only a robot could do that.  

OREN 

But as you will attest, Ono, some among us can remember everything, and so that is not a ‘tell.’  It suggests only that Creants can do anything humans can do.

AIDA

Better.

OREN 

Clearly, clearly all, I’ve pulled you away from the festivities for too long.  Come on, let’s on with Silicirque!

(And just to Bridge, faintly)

Bridge, can we…

(Apparently she’s gone)

Oh well…

SOUND SYSTEM

Dang girl, dang girl, systematic monolith

Eh-eh-eh girl, I got an exponential paradise 

I’m looking up my legs

I got dominos, dominos, and dominos

Tomorrow’s looking alternate

I, I got superpowers

You like reggae tone, you like Almond Joy?

Donkey Kong, you like my little boy?

CATH

This is the most dope of nights.

BRIDGE

This is the least dope of nights.

CATH

I know, right?  

BRIDGE

So much messed up about her, it, this whole thing.

CATH

We still have us.

BRIDGE

Of course, Cath.  But Oren was testing us all.  Gauging our reactions.  We supposed to be thrilled with his new toy?  I cannot believe he made that robot and, for what?

CATH

I think it’s obvious.

(A beat)

Aida’s personality even matches yours, a little bit.

BRIDGE

Not even in the ballpark.  Aida was started long before me and will, obviously, keep on not aging long after me.

CATH

You didn’t see Oren watching you watching her watching him?

BRIDGE

I saw something that frightened the nettle out of me.

CATH

I know, right?   So are we gonna fight it or just give up? I say we Thelma and Louise this robot slut. Hell, let’s shank the whole damned Brotopia. Give ‘em a bad case of Gynophobia

BRIDGE

That gives me an idea, Cath, but it’ll involve some serious extreming.  You in?

CATH

I’m in…to you Bridge.

BRIDGE

There is no other like you, Cath.

SOUND SYSTEM

Dang girl, Chechy for me, dang girl, Yeet

Take a supplement

Level up khaki safari, mushroom, Molly sex, Atari

Baby game, level up, take a sup sup supplement

Supplement

Supplement

Dang girl, dang girl, dang girl

BRIDGE

(Outro beat, lightly singing)

So this is nuts, right plants?  I know, I’m a long way from you. But I can hear you, or is it the drugs at this party?  Don’t know how these sili-kings can focus.  Or maybe that explains them. Well, I’ll be home soon. Honeysuckle, lean in with Eyebright—you know how he gets.  And I’m going to need his strength if I’m going to kick all Silicon Valley in the balls…

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