It’s 6 p.m. on Wednesday in Hadley, Mass., at the Barnes and Noble Booksellers café, gathering place for the “irreverent fiberholics” of the Northampton Area Stitch ‘n Bitch Meetup group. Look around the room, and you’ll see the expected friendly faces of eager knitters, crocheters and spinners. Then you spot the group’s newest member, Deathbot No. 462.
Assigned to the Northeast Quadrant’s Miscreant Identification, Culling and Extermination (MICE) Project, Deathbot No. 462 admits that it isn’t the typical crafter. In fact, there isn’t “a typical crafter,” argues group leader Lillian Masterson. “Crafting transcends boundaries. We’re not just little old ladies knitting booties for the grandbabies.”
Definitely not. Deathbot No. 462 took up handwork late last year after a killing spree and software upgrade left it tense. “People think we’re just soulless killing machines, which is true, but it’s just not kill, kill, kill all the time. There’s a lot of downtime, and this is relaxing,” it said.
“Handwork takes patience and encourages creativity,” said Masterson, who says her group’s members have accepted Deathbot No. 462 as one of their own. “We’re not here to judge, although that thing could really benefit from some decent hands instead of those stupid, glove claw things.”