The Running of the Robots by Oliver Buckram is a story about stampeding robots, clerical errors and a teensy tiny bit about generational gaps. Also, symbolism but who cares about that.
They came thundering down Main Street, across the continental US, like immortal ten-ton lemmings…
Sergeant Alberto S. Mendoza (U.S. Army, Retired) made a mistake. A tiny little mistake, little more than a typist’s error. Infinitesimal, almost negligible. Except it cause a half-a-century long robot stampede across the world. Now, he stays indoors whenever the Running of the Robots passes through Dallas, sipping Coronas with his dog, Patton in his lap. He thinks himself forsaken by history, his mistake forgotten. He is mistaken.
“It’s like, about the journey, man. Not the destination”
The Running of the Robots is funny and oddly heart-warming. It’s one of those kinds of science fiction stories you don’t see nowadays, the kind that we seem to have forgotten. We keep trying to make deep, ponderous creations that will awe and move people, we want to write tomes upon tomes of hard-boiled scientifiction and sometimes we forget that stories just need to be insane and fun.
Running of the Robots could have been written in the 50’s or next year but it still is a piece that is absurd and tongue-in-cheek and a perfect little read.
- 700 words
- Oliver Buckram teaches social science and has perhaps glimpsed into the futility of it all.
- I know I shouldn’t really wish for these kinds of things, but I’d love me a robot stampede. Long as it didn’t stick around too long.
- You can read the story here.
- Tip the author if you liked it. Help a writa out.
Konstantine Paradias is a Greek science fiction and fantasy writer. He has a blog, called Shapescapes (shapescapes). There, you can find comic book and movie reviews, a collection of his short stories as well as lots of other (slightly unrelated) articles to while away the time. When he was a kid, he wanted to be a super-villain because he like, didn’t need your laws, man. He got over it when he got older.
For comments or plain old contact, you can find him at firstname.lastname@example.org