Slightly out-of-shape men in their 40s and 50s are said to be giddy with excitement at news of a new A.I. doll from Japan that behaves like its owner isn’t completely invisible.
The Jitsaki Give-a-Crap 3000 bots go on sale in February 2018. The lifelike dolls are said to realistically mimic the vague signs of interest and attention that middle aged men used to receive from the opposite sex they were still just about in their and 30s and hadn’t completely let themselves go.
‘This is a dream come true for a busy forty-something like me,’ enthuses software engineer Marcus Dowding. ‘I’m fully resigned to the fact that attractive women in their twenties would sooner give me their spare kidney than date me. However, I still yearn for the sensation of not being completely blanked when attempting polite conversation in a cinema queue. That’s what the Give-a-Crap-bot promises and I can’t wait to get myself one to mildly divert every night.’
Among the features promised by the Give-a-Crap 3000 are lifelike eyes, which don’t glaze over when their owner tries to amuse or impress them for slightly longer than is seemly. The dolls also come with a set of interchangeable band t-shirts for various rock and metal acts, allowing the purchaser to reminisce to the appreciative cyborg about how they actually saw the act in question at the Hammersmith Apollo decades ago before half the band died in suspicious and unexplained circumstances.
‘I know a lot of people will judge me for buying one of these bots,’ admits Clive Burridge, a 49-year-old personnel manager, who says he has already put down a deposit on the £8,995 cost of a Give-a-Crap. ‘But it’s much better than the alternative. Before this, if I wanted that sort of validation I used to walk the streets to find a female chugger. They would mildly flirt with me for my bank details, in exchange I would feign interest in Greenpeace. It was really sordid habit and I’m still paying the price every month with a string of direct debits I haven’t got around to cancelling.’
Marcus says he too will be saving up for the doll when it hits the shops. ‘I knew I had to do something when waitresses wouldn’t even put a smiley face on the bottom of the bill any more, in case I get the wrong idea.’ However, both men say they won’t be attempting to sleep with their purchases. ‘I know she’s just a non-sentient bundle of wires, algorithms and fleshy latex,’ says Clive. ‘But even I know she can do better than me.’