by Slava Heretz
The robot smiled and began to corral the giant stack of chips in the center of the table.
Richard first looked down at his own hand then at the five cards sitting face up on the table.
The robot lifted its head.
“Master! How can you accuse me of such things? I am merely programmed to perform statistical computations and place logical wagers in response to my analysis of the given scenario.”
“I don’t care what I programmed you to do. You cheated.”
“Master, Texas Hold ‘Em is a zero-sum game. I believe you are simply upset that I have claimed all of the chips that were presented at the beginning of the tournament.”
“Look here, you circuit brain. There are four aces in a standard 52 card deck. I had one and there are two on the table. How in the world do you have four-of-a-kind if there’s supposed to be only one ace left in the deck?”
The robot said nothing. It simply blinked its aluminum coated eyelids and stared blankly at its master.
“Let me see your cards, Sid.”
Sid didn’t move.
“Let me see your cards, you heaping pile of metal!”
The robot sat still in defiance.
Richard stood up and shoved his chair back across the room. He stomped over to where Sid was sitting and stood over him, staring down at the two cards laying face down.
“Flip them over, Sid.”
Sid began to bring his left hand towards the cards but suddenly stopped. A drop of ink fell on the table from the tip of his index finger and he looked up at his master with the guilt and shame of a toddler caught reaching into the cookie jar.
“You know, Sid, this is why we can never be friends.”