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Is that what they say?
“Water, water! I need water,” Al yelled to anyone who could hear. He had been calling out that way for more than a day.
“He doesn’t mean it. ‘Oil, oil’ maybe, but certainly not water,” Mac said. “Water was what caused his whole mess. Better yet, how ‘bout ‘Maintenance! On the double!’ No, Al’s a drama queen if I’ve ever seen one.”
“Easy for you to say, Mac,” Cheryl said. “You’re the very definition of a well-oiled machine. Why, Maintenance fixed you up just two days ago. Two hours after they left, Al started making funny noises. You remember that. That was when we had hurricane gusts. He was fine…until he wasn’t. Fact of the matter is, those gusts almost pulled out my roots too.”
“Now you’re exaggerating, Cheryl. Come on, it wasn’t that bad.”
“You haven’t looked close enough then, have you? My time’s limited. One 50 mile-an-hour gust and I’ll come crashing down. I’m leaning, Mac. Doesn’t feel too good either.”
“Hmm, yeah, I guess you are. Sorry to hear that. Take a look at Benson over there. Rusting away. Useless. Unable to even move.”
“Yeah, but I’ve still got my hearing,” Benson said above the moans Al was still making. “As soon as Maintenance comes around, they’ll fix me right up. I know it.”
Mac said, “Don’t count on it, Benson. Last time they came around, they had to remove Louise, Trevor, Bob, and Michelle. Disassembled them right in front of us as if we didn’t exist. All those guys thought they had another few years in them. Not a chance. After they were neglected for so long, they just seized up and couldn’t come to life again.”
“Oh oh oh oh, do you see that two rows over, Mac?” Cheryl said.
“Hey, Harriet, hope Maintenance gets here soon,” Mac yelled. “You are oozing out oil, Lady.”
“Don’t feel it at all. Humming like a bird over here,” Harriet called back. “Uh, sorry, not like a bird. Wrong simile. Thanks for the heads up, though. Not sure what I can do because Maintenance comes when they come.”
“Poor gal,” Mac said to Cheryl. “Doesn’t even know how bad she has it. She’s generatin’ power, but for how much longer?”
“Look at all of us,” Cheryl said. “What is there, like 200 of us? Half of us leaking, rusting, and just sputtering out of existence. Then they tear us down and toss us into a landfill.”
“Pretty much like the Solar Panel Guys,” Mac said. “They burn out much quicker than we do and they don’t have any of our moving parts. Bet they complain too.”
Cheryl said, “The only Greenies who aren’t complaining about burn out and more maintenance are the Nukes.”
“True, but they’re being neglected for different reasons,” said Mac. “Just say the word ‘nuke’ and all the usual suspects freak out on cue.”
“Yeah, but we and the Solar Panel Guys fill up landfills faster than Nukes ever will. I guess we got that goin’ for us.”
Mac said, “Not really. It’s not exactly a plus in our favor.”
“You ain’t alyin’,” the rumble from inside the Earth said.
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