I have simple wants and needs. I am standing on the brink of the next millennium, whatever that means, but technically speaking, I know that great, grand and glorious things are ahead for me. Amazing inventions, wonderful creations, and unbelievable dreams will find reality in the world ahead.
I don't seek time travel, or teleportation, I'm content to zip my little car in and out of traffic like a red bug flitting from flower to flower. After all, in teleportation you'd miss that little antique shop on your way.
I don't wish for some mechanical being to care for my home and cook my meals. If I needed or wanted that, Merry Maids would be only to glad to enter my employ. Truth is no one can do it like I want it done, human or machine. it has always been so and I do not expect that to change.
I'm not standing in line for some miracle cure, or fountain of youth. I'm not really sure I want to live forever and ever. I intend to make the most of all the time I have, but someone's got to step aside for the next generation.
I'd kind of like to go to space for a vacation, but the thought of barfing in weightlessness and having a G-force face-lift tends to send me to my Aruba Cruise brochures. I'll take the four day five night special, traveling on good old momma earth thanks.
No, technomania can go as far as it wants to go, but I'm holding out hope for only one major invention.
A vending machine that works.
Is that so much to wish for?
It could truly go down in history as man's greatest invention.
Okay, close your eyes, take a deep breath to release the calming endorphins. I know the mention of the word 'vending' caused your blood pressure to rise. Don't be ashamed, we've all been there.
Now, visualize this: A bank of vending machines, standing straight and tall before you. Look at the one on the right. It's a clean mean vending machine. All of the lights are on, it is fully stocked. The 'correct change only' light is off permanently, it will never run out of change. The dollar bill slot will accept bills other than those freshly minted and transported by armored car wrapped in hermetically sealed packages, untouched by human hands.
I know...I know...the visual so far is nearly orgasmic.
Curb your excitement, there's more.
You approach the machines in awe, suddenly struck with the urge to kneel before them and pay tribute, pledge your allegiance. Looking down you realize there is no stickiness to the floor surface from sodas that have dropped and burst. No ants scurry hither and yonder gathering cracker crumbs to feed their family. The area surrounding the wondrous machines is as wondrous as the devices themselves.
Tentatively you approach, your hands shaking in anticipation. You stand before the snack machine and shake your head in disbelief. Twenty five different offerings and each rack is filled to the ends with fresh, currently dated stock. The world is yours and it exists behind this sparkly clean glass.
As if all this was not enough, you realize that the prices are fair, no price gouging, no tripling of the cost of the item. You pinch yourself, you must be dreaming. Look, even the bag of chips contains more than five of the crunchy snacks, it bulges at the plastic seams.
Plunking your change in you decide to go for the Almond Joy bar...not a miniature version with a colossal price, but a regular two bar four nut delicacy for a couple of coins. Pressing the F8 keys you marvel at the touch of the keypad, warm to your fingertips, closing your eyes in anticipation.
The silence is deafening.
Eyes still closed, your mind on the precipice waiting for the "Clunk", you begin to have the first tinges of dread.
You can't have "Whirrrrrrrrrrrr" and no "Clunk" and achieve chocolate heaven. Perhaps the landing space is padded so as not to damage the goods. They've thought of everything.
Opening your eyes you look down to see emptiness.
You revert back to the old days and reach into your pocket for a couple more coins, inserting them into the slot.
Pressing F8 once again you hear "Whirrrrrrrrrrrr"...
Gazing upward you see it. Your Almond Joy dangling on the edge of the rack, held tightly by its little Peter Paul corner.
Dejectedly you turn as if to leave, suddenly whipping around with a kick that sends the machine rocking backwards off its front two legs.
Softly whistling, "I've got the joy joy joy joy down in my heart...", you unwrap the candy bar, shaking your head as you walk away.