October 21, 3112
An object found while conducting a foot survey of a Historic Twenty-First Century Domicile.
While surveying a historic site, a pre-apocalyptic domicile, members of the crew observed a heretofore unidentified object, labeled in the survey log as feature #4.
The feature, or object, was 45 cm. long, 15 cm. wide and 32 cm. tall. The object was roughly cylindrical, with five appendages. Four of these appendages were fastened to each of the corners of the cylinder, and extended 14 cm. to the ground. The fifth appendage emerged from the upper caudal end of the cylinder and stuck in the air at a variable angle. This appendage, 31 cm. in length, appeared at first to be a handle. When one of the survey members attempted to move the object by lifting it by the handle, he claims to have received positive proof that this is not the correct function of this appendage.
Two pair of sensory devices were located on a rotating sphere positioned on the arbitrarily designated leading, or cephalic, end of the object. These organs were bilaterally symmetrical along the longitudinal axis. One pair were bright yellow spheres that were observed to be photosensitive. The other pair were thin pyramid shaped flaps covering apertures into the cylinder. Nothing was observed to enter or exit from these apertures.
The object is covered by a shaggy form of upholstery consisting of fine black hairs approximately 2 cm. in length. Periodically the object emitted a short shrill cry that was not unlike the sound produced by viciously squeezing an infant. This experiment was repeated by all members of the survey team on a control group of infants, until all members could adequately reproduce a close approximation of the sound. This cry was found to emanate from what was observed to be an intake aperture from the cephalic end of the object.
The location of this object cannot be permanently tied to the archaeological datum point as it seems to be periodically mobile. Independent observations from numerous sightings confirmed that the object does indeed travel. While several locations were returned to frequently, the range of points traveled to include the entire survey site. Some of the locations most commonly frequented included; the top of the television, the kitchen, all window sills, and locations that the observers came to call ‘destruction points.’
These destruction points had a similar pattern; all were the tops or sides of upholstered furniture. Several times a day, the object would approach one of these locations, the selection of which was either random or determined by means not apparent to the survey crew. Upon arriving at one of these sites, the object would begin shredding, ripping, or pulling at the fabric of the chosen object. This destructive act, accomplished by retractable tools from the four primary appendages, would continue for several seconds, when suddenly, the act would cease as abruptly as it had commenced.
Since the object was repeatedly observed ingesting organic material as well as water, this may be the source of power for the object. An alternative theory, based upon numerous observations that the object spent lengthy periods of time in a prone position in direct sunlight, has the object powered by solar energy.
Regardless of the purpose of consuming the organic matter, there can be no question of the end result of the process. From the caudal end of the cylinder, small parcels of partially decomposed organic substances frequently appeared. These soft parcels were cylindrical in shape, averaging 5 cm. in length and 1 cm. wide. The color ranged from light brown to dark black. Unfortunately, all were uniformly odoriferous.
At various times a day, the object initiated a self maintenance program of cleaning and preventive maintenance. An internal, small, wet, pink appendage appeared from the cephalic area of the object that was vigorously applied to all portions of the object. An exhaustive search of the survey site revealed that the only other object present with a similar function was labeled, “Self-Cleaning Oven by Hotpoint.” The possibility exists that both objects have a similar manufacturing origin.
While no proof was available as to the cultural function of this object, the most likely explanation is that this is a self-powered composting machine. The two main functions of this object seem to be the destruction of large objects, rendering them into smaller objects, and the production of the fertilizer packages. It is probable, indeed likely, that left unattended, that this object could recycle the entire survey site.