Sherlock is an English Springer Spaniel very large and with a slightly warped sense of humour.He is a good raconteur of tails and considers himself to be a bit of a wag.
Sherlock is in fact Internationally famous, you don't remember such a dog? Well to refresh your memory let me tell you the story of how Sherlock came to live with me... Once upon a time it was a bitterly cold New Years Eve and I had gone to a party at a friends house a couple of miles away. At about 2.00 a.m. everybody was leaving and braving the cold and snow to go home.
As I was about to leave my friend asked me if I would mind walking back with someone to make sure that he made it home safely.The person concerned was Hugh Macintosh a rather obnoxious fellow who had got well and truly drunk and had been annoying most people there during the party by staggering up to them and whilst breathing alcoholic fumes all over them telling them what a great guy he was.He had also managed to smash several glasses and the crystal punch bowl in his drunken reeling.
With a large sigh (why pick on me, even if it is the season of goodwill to all men, there are limits) I agreed to take him away and I had to pass his house on my way back home.
We started trudging through the deep snow past the houses in the country lane and I was enjoying the silence of the falling snow when Hugh commenced a slurred and personalised version of "'twas on the Good Ship Venus ". I tried to shut him up but he just became louder and louder.
As we passed the last house in the lane Hugh was sick over the hedge and knocked over the dustbin.The lights came on, the door opened and the next thing I knew this magnificent Springer Spaniel had leapt over the hedge, sunk its teeth into Hugh's backside and then bounded back over the hedge.
The effect on Hugh was amazing.He sobered up in an instant.The owner appeared out of the house and Hugh started raving on about calling the police and having the dog destroyed.
I had really had enough of Hugh by this time and I informed him that if he tried any such thing I would join with the owner and have him arrested for being drunk and disorderly, criminal damage etc. and accuse him of having attacked the dog to start off with.
Hugh now perfectly sober simply strode off in a rage.
The owner of the dog thanked me and invited me in. Over a hot drink he told me that the dog had a dislike of drunks but the amazing thing was that they quickly sobered up after the dog had nipped them.
After chatting he told me that they had just bred the dog and he had taken as a stud fee the pick of the litter.He took me in to see the puppy which had only just been weaned and there (you have guessed it)was Sherlock.It was instant love and he agreed to let me buy him especially after the puppy came up to me and gave me a lick and tried to chew my ear.
He could see it was love at first bite.
He also told me that he would not breed the dog again and when his dog passed away he would send me all of the trophies that the dog and previous ancestors had won provided I did the same in due course if I bred Sherlock.
Suffice it to say I have had wonderful years with Sherlock and all of the awards and trophies now adorn my home.
One curious thing though.I have never had a hangover since having Sherlock.
Provided he licks my face before I go to sleep it does not matter how much I have had to drink I never suffer for it.
Out of curiosity I sent a sample of his saliva for analysis and it appears that it contains a protein molecule that is a guaranteed cure for hangovers.
I told you at the beginning that Sherlock is world famous, well he is for the only certain hangover cure.
No you still don't recognise it?
Surely you have heard of
"The Heir of the Dog that bit Hugh "
Sherlock says he can hear your howls from here
Having Sherlock as a companion seemed to rekindle my inspiation for invention.He was much admired by all friends and visitors So much so that a German friend of mine Shargi Munchausen asked me to build a robotic duplicate of Sherlock.
Shargi's father the present Baron achieved some notoriety a few years ago as a benefactor to animals.Upon hearing about all of the strays in Munich the Baron promptly bought several defunct steel mills in the Ruhr, had all of the stray dogs in Munich rounded up and created permanent homes for them in the old steel works.
They even wrote a song about it surely you remember:- The Mills Are Alive With The Hounds Of Munich
Anyway this is about his son Shargi whom I first met when he was visiting Hugh Macintosh.
Hugh had become a reformed character and had bought a fruit farm called Gates farm because of the number of entrances to it. Hugh had made a successful cross of the Cox's Orange Pippin with the Bramley which he named after himself but for some reason he did not seem to have a lot of luck when he rang up greengrocers and asked them to buy the Apple Macintosh.He had even less luck with a giant plum which he called "The Big Blue" The last I heard of him he had set up an industrial unit, on Gates farm, manufacturing armoured glass glazing units and selling them direct to the public. I saw his advert in the local paper last week "Gates does Windows... Guaranteed not to crash "
Back to the main story. Shargi had met Sherlock and was very impressed with his skills and intelligence.Knowing my interest in cybernetics Shargi asked me if I thought I could create a robotic duplicate of Sherlock.But he only wanted a parts list and the blueprints so he could physically build the robodog himself.
Well I decided that the best way to do it was to simply start building prototypes and keep improving as I went along.
This is how it went:-
Model A. My first try was using bits of old timepieces, digital and clockwork.The result was a miniature that could stand on the palm of your hand.That would not do.I knew that Shargi wanted more than a miniature Watchdog.
Model B.I used left over scraps from this and that and in particular some bits from some of the first pocket pcs.I was still getting the dimensions wrong.This was about the size of a Jack Russell Terrier and there was a design flaw which meant it angrily snapped its jaws at anything that came near it.
Obviously it was a Cross Patch.
Model C. By this time I realised that I was going to have difficulty with artificial intelligence so I decided to combine another speciality of mine Genetic engineering. I took a few cell samples from Sherlock's mouth genetically altered them and cloned them.When the sample was big enough I froze them in liquid nitrogen and enclosed the sample in a container which kept them at that temperature.I then had a clever thought before I go any further I would check the audio input/output.
I hooked up the circuitry and turned it on.
An eldritch shriek cleft the air as the word " I " was screamed several times by the cyborg. Then the sonics caused the container to rupture leaving a conical pile of rapidly defrosting sludge.
I had created an "I scream clone "
Model D. I thought I was getting nowhere fast so I looked for help.