Monday, March 21, 2011

The Human Claw Machine

As you continue to grow, Bub (much like an ambitious fungus), there are so many serious obstacles to overcome and "milestones" for you to achieve.  So far, though, I've gotta say I'm not too impressed.  I mean, you can follow a brightly-colored object from side to side and respond to loud noises.  Big deal; sounds like you've got a promising future awaiting you at the local carny.  But I want you to know that I will support you down this developmental highway, riding shotgun, laughing my ass off the whole way.

You've got to try and see it from my perspective here, Bub.  I mean, you don't know you have hands--how is this possible?  This is comedic gold you're giving me, yet you get all "sensitive" when I laugh in your face.  It can't be helped, my friend.  Where do you think those hands come from?  And who controls them?  Look, manna from heaven!  Please land delicately, deliciously in my mouth.  Preposterous.  It's weird to see a creature with motor skills, yet almost zero motor control.  Like Keith Richards, the morning after.  You're very much like a simple machine.  A claw machine.  

We all remember the claw, right?  You pay your quarter, enticed by that calculator watch or the Ohio State mini-helmet or the Domino's Noid doll.  Even though your aim was sniper-honed and your touch gentle, refined even, the claw didn't care.  It had no feelings, no vested interest.  It just plopped down, closed its grip around air and then made you watch, humiliated, as it slowly moved back over the hole, mocking you with its empty release.  

Sometimes after a good week's worth of allowance, you'd fish something from the depths, only to not quite reel it in.  Catch and release.  Then it's just sitting there, your excavated treasure, exposed and radiant.  And you're out of quarters.  So you run to the token machine and your bill is all crinkly, it takes a few tries.  Then you skip back to the machine, licking your chops, only to see some freeloading half-pint with the aid of his imbecilic, cheating-ass father's hand, claiming your prize.  And though this practice (known as claw-jacking or blitzclaw in Germany) is actually illegal in some countries, the law affords you no protection here.  All you can do is watch them prance off with your piece of determination and learn that honor and hard work can never compete with well-calculated knavery.

But I digress.  Here is photographic evidence that Bub is, in fact, a human claw machine, wherein his (allegedly non-existent) hands are the claw, and his mouth functions as the winning drop-hole.

The scene is set.  The claw at rest with a cornucopia of fabulous prizes.

The claw is positioned over the coveted worthless object.

Button pressed, the claw begins its mechanical closing.

Eureka!  The claw has latched.  But will it survive the ascent?

Likely scenario = no.  Claw returns to drop-hole empty.

Let's try again.  Latch, lift...

Got it, and getting close...

A moment of trepidation, as the claw slips.

Oh, so close little fella.  Yet again, empty-handed.  Luckily, I've got more quarters.

Great success!

To the victor goes the spoils ( in this case the keys to the palace).  And never having to say you're sorry.


  1. My favorite are when baby claws latch onto a pair of earrings.. good thing you don't have earrings!

  2. Yeah, but I wear earrings, or I should say I used too...little bugger can really pull!