Radio 79, side B, track 11: “Mr. Roboto” by Styx

Styx - Mr. RobotoOh, Styx, this is the first time that I’ve really heard and listened to this song all the way through and really, really paid attention to it.  I have a vague memory as a kid of listening to this song, maybe with my aunt at my grandma’s house, and I think maybe we watched the video of it or something; I have this memory of a sense of fascinated dread of Mr. Roboto.  I was 7 or 8 when this came out, so yeah, I can see where I might have been a little scared and a little excited about Mr. Roboto.

Anyway, two thoughts come to mind as I listened to this.  First thing, I totally missed the boat on y’all, Styx.  It’s probably for the best that I didn’t become obsessed with yet another thing, but I can totally see myself going down the rabbit hole of your concept albums.  I watched the intro video for this song and I guarantee I would have been hooked on the whole idea of Killroy and the world of Mr. Roboto.

Second thing, up until about 4 months ago, I was all on board with your fear of robots and dehumanization, Styx.  And then we bought a Roomba.  Who we named Rumbles.  And I love him.  A year ago I would have slapped my face for saying that I loved a robot, but he does the job I don’t want to, just like Mr. Roboto.  If there was a dusting robot, I would be totally onboard.

I’ve been afraid of a robot uprising for a long time.  Like for serious afraid.  But that was before I realized that robots could vacuum my house.  I’m guessing that that’s how they’re going to get us, but I hope Rumbles puts in a good word for me when the robot overlords take over.  And I hope they’ll still let us listen to this song.

lyrics to “Mr. Roboto”

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