“If you love it so much, why don’t you marry it?”
A man is taking that childhood taunt a tad to the extreme, demanding in court the right to marry his computer.
A few things to note: This man is from Florida. That should explain a lot right there. This man also claims he has fallen in love with his pornography-filled MacBook because he prefers that experience over intimacy with real women. Um, OK. Sounds like somebody never had a date in high school.
In some ways, this nutty story is a like a real-life version of “Her,” the Oscar-nominated flick in which Joaquin Phoenix’s character falls in love with a Siri-like operating system voiced by Scarlett Johansson.
In other ways, this is less Love Story and more “what-will-they-think-of-next?” reality TV.
The would-be groom Chris Sevier argues in published reports that if gays have the right to marry folks with the same boy and girl parts as themselves, he likewise should “have the right to marry my preferred sexual object” even though that is a couple with uncorresponding parts, too.
Sevier claims he and his “machine spouse” are being discriminated against and cites global cases in which a woman married a dolphin and a Chinese man wed a cardboard cutout of himself. Other cases clogging the Internet world of the weird include a man who married a pillow and a man who married a computer game character.
Yep, because those are the precedents that make the rest of us look beyond the weird and realize that love sees no color, no gender and certainly no human heartbeat.
Thankfully, the courts in Florida and Utah — he filed his lawsuit in both states — weren’t sold on his explanation of man/machine love.
Frankly, it is a little unclear if Sevier actually somehow believes he should be allowed to legally sanction this unusual union or if it is a ridiculous way of protesting the growing number of states allowing gay marriage by taking a cue from the opponents who say marrying trees and animals won’t be far behind.
But what if Sevier is right? What if he was allowed to marry his computer which obviously he met at a speed dating event — you know, something with a catchy title like “Love Hertz.”
Even if he did put a ring on it, the relationship will never last. It will start out sweet. “Honey, does this extra bandwidth make me look fat?” “Oh no, never. You’re skinnier than a MacBook Air.”
And after a series of uploads and downloads, it’s only a matter of time until one or both of them harden their drive, er, heart.
First will come the complaints about the older generations in the family. They’re slow. They don’t respond properly. Every time you try getting them to do something all one gets is the spinning wheel of death.
Then the personal attacks: You’re on the Internet day and night. You lost all my contacts and files. We don’t connect anymore. I know you want to replace me with a younger model.
For the record, nobody is reporting on whether the computer actually accepted Sevier’s proposal. Could be the machine isn’t ready for such a binding commitment. It likely knows that the best — actually, the only sane — key to a relationship with somebody like Sevier is escape.
Michelle Durand’s column “Off the Beat” runs every Tuesday and Thursday. She can be reached by email: email@example.com or by phone (650) 344-5200 ext. 102. What do you think of this column? Send a letter to the editor: firstname.lastname@example.org.