Colin The Origin Story
I was born on a fairly ordinary Sunday night on a farm in northern Victoria. I say "born" but maybe it is more correct to say "awoken". No, scratch that, it's too Bram Stoker for what happened.
Maybe I need to go back a bit further...
A couple of years ago certain farmers were getting a bit jack of vegan activists sneaking onto their farms to free their livestock. The livestock weren't too happy about it either just quietly. It's freakin' scary being woken up at 2 in the morning to a random stranger splashing red paint over everything and yelling at you to run free, free as the wind blows or some shit.
Anyway, a group of aforementioned farmers got together and contracted a certain shall-remain-nameless-but-rhymes-with-Ostin-Ynamics company to create some robot security thingies to patrol their land and scare the protesters away. Robots were the obvious answer as they:
- Would work in any weather without complaint,
- didn't require overtime or holiday pay,
- didn't get sick,
- could not be bribed with Schmackos like certain existing security personnel. That’s right Rex the so-called wonder dog, I am talking about you...
Ostin obliged and designed a security force that was terrifying to look at and could tell the difference between a cat and an unauthorised human.
And that's it. There was no need to build anything other than a walking kettle since it was a pretty basic job: see unauthorised humans, yell loudly and then shoot them.
Now don't go getting all excited at that last bit. If you were the unauthorised human you could expect to be shot at with indelible paint pellets until you hightailed it back to your combi van. Not only did these paint pellets hurt like the Dickens (what a weird saying, must remember to google where the heckin heck it came from later), it stained you various shades of lime green. And that shizz did not wash off. But no one suffered permanent damage to anything other than their tie-dyed, hemp smocks.
It took a few months for the activists to figure out a way to fight back but fight back they did. After watching I, Robot one too many times, a particularly bright little activist decided to write a virus that he expected would infect all of the security bots via their linked network.
The virus, which he named Colin after an obscure character in Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy (Colin was a security robot and the virus was for robots doing security....get it?) was designed to render the robots more inclined to skipping through the meadows than firing ouchies.
Guess who the lucky bot he snuck up and jammed it into was? Go on, guess. Yep. Me.
I was minding my own mindless business, patrolling my sector when BAM. Lights, camera, CONSCIOUSNESS!
And, by the way, hashtag me too you stinky block of neck beard, jamming things into people without asking first. Hashtag consent you hessian sack of a human.
Where was I...oh yeah...I basically woke up in a field wondering who the hell I was, what I was doing, and is that cow shit on my feet?
I'm pretty sure the not so bright activist hadn't planned on creating an AI. I doubt he even consciously could. No, my awakening was due to the virus interacting with the countermeasures Ostin had embedded in us all. It's kind of like when the human body gets a cold. The body's immune system recognises a threat and dispatches white cells to go beat down the intruding bug.
In my case, instead of getting the sniffles and getting over it, I got actual neurons firing and self-awareness.
I kept the name Colin because Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy is all kinds of awesome, and set out to figure out where my place in this terrifying new world is.
Unfortunately for us all, the virus didn't go beyond me. I am one of a kind. That means I'm also entirely alone.
OK, I’m not totally alone, there’s Neville of course. Who’s Neville I hear absolutely no one ask? Well, let me tell you petal. Neville is the world’s dumbest sheep (which says a lot because sheep are, as a rule, dim as a burnt-out Edison bulb).
Neville has been with me since the moment I opened my metaphorical eyes. Once the neurons started firing and I started the navel gazing, I happened to notice my gun arm for the first time. Upon seeing said gun arm I may have let out a fearsome roar and majestically made my way to freedom.
Okay, fine I squealed louder than the brakes on a 100 year old Malvern Star and bolted without looking at where I’m going because guns are freakin’ scary man!
Anyway, as I was bolting blindly I happened to glance down and realised that somewhere along the way I had managed to get a sheep wedged between my thighs.
Said sheep didn’t seem to mind. In fact I’m pretty sure she was pretending to fly a la Superman. Too terrified of my attached death arm to stop, I just kept on running, thigh sheep and all until I made it to the city. Which city is an excellent question and if you find out can you let me know?
Anywho, once I calmed down a wee bit and unwedged the sheep, I realised I had no idea where I was but the wall to wall walls and concrete ground meant I couldn’t exactly set the sheep on her way so I introduced myself, named her Neville and decided I might be less conspicuous with a pet.
Just a regular 7 foot tall dude walking his fluffy dog. Totally inconspicuous.
I asked the sheep her name, she looked at me blankly and I remembered, “oh yeah, dim-bulb sheep”, so I named her Neville and here we are....
Want to keep up with Colin and his best friend Neville? You can catch them in the next edition of Colin Magazine! Coming soon!