Julius Bright wasnâ€™t a designer, though he was often mistaken for one. Julius was the man who made designers, who launched and crushed careers. He had owned magazines, was the heir to an incredible fortune, a net star, an idol.
Twelve years ago, Julius Bright told me that I wouldnâ€™t have any future as a designer. He did it in the nicest possible way. After a show he pulled me aside and told me that I had flair but no talent and that he didnâ€™t want to say anything in front of the press because I was such a nice boy but if I continued to pursue this path eventually he would have to say something and he didnâ€™t want me to work so hard without much to show for it.
So I quit, just because Julius told me too. I went into the business side of design, and Iâ€™ve been very happy there. When I look back on the faux bohemian that I was, Iâ€™m glad Julius pulled me aside.
Twelve years later, we met again, and this time he was the one with something to prove.
He met me outside an ugly warehouse on the edge of the city, little silver spheres swirling around his head. The Paparazzi-bots, taking pictures. It seemed like an odd place for Julius to meet me, not at all the stylish places I imagined him frequenting. He was dressed in a shining striped pink and yellow waistcoat.
â€œTim! Itâ€™s been years!â€ he said, throwing his hands dramatically up in the air. I didnâ€™t think he actually remembered me, I assume he played back his stored memory files. â€œI needed to talk to someone who could talk to the business side of things.â€ He said, leading me inside. â€œBut also someone who understood design, like you do.â€
I had no idea why he called me here, or what he needed from me. Sure, I loved design and could talk to businessmen, but I had a hard time believing that Julius Bright would have a hard time getting business to buy anything. His smile showed glittering teeth.
â€œWhat is one of the biggest problems the world of design faces?â€ He asked, leading me down a dark corridor.
I shrugged. â€œConsumer fatigue?â€
â€œOh Tim, you joker. No. The problem is with models, and the problem with models is their transience.â€ We came to a black curtained room with a long walkway. Julius leaped on the walkway and began to strut with long, angry steps. â€œA woman is only beautiful from fourteen to seventeen.â€ He paused and rested his silver cane against his lips. â€œMaybe seventeen is a bit old, but you see what I mean. Anyway, after that, she begins to rot. Theyâ€™ve got such a short shelf life; itâ€™s hard to build a career for them. They are flashes, beautiful lights that go out in an instant.â€ He hung his head. â€œThere are other issues too, young girls arenâ€™t very dependable, and the smart ones donâ€™t really have their heart in it, they always leave to become engineers or something. Terrible losses, really.â€
Julius opened his arms wide, smiling gaily. â€œBut now we have options. Now we will have the ability to lengthen the career of a model. We can make perfect girls that will not change, girls we can control. They wonâ€™t get caught in scandals, unless you want them too, of course, and they can be relied upon. Theyâ€™ll never leave to go to school, or eat too much, or die. â€œ
I was about to ask what kind of girl would have all these features, but before I could speak, he began his monologue again.
â€œI know, the digital girl failed miserably years ago. The animated girl was fun and perfect, but she wasnâ€™t real, and people like things they can touch, or pretend they could touch.â€
â€œNow, now I can give you the flesh. Weâ€™ve grown the flesh based on the best girls in their prime. Weâ€™ve grown it and preserved it, a perfect plastic replica. You want tall? Her legs can be lengthened. You want longer hair? We can grow it in seconds.
And most importantly, we can brand them.â€ Julius clapped his hands, and sleek, slender, impossibly tall women, all naked, emerged from behind the black curtain and marched down the walkway, Dark hair, light hair, short, tall, milky white, coal black. Julius laughed and grabbed one on her shoulders. She lithely stepped close to him. â€œHere is our innocent.â€ He pointed to the other end of the walkway â€œHere is our counter culture heroine. Here is the slut. Here is the sleek lesbian, here is the exotic tropical. We can make them last, attach them to products based on image, and design for and around them. No more transience. What we have here is complete flexibility.
They are warm. Their eyes are wet. They will strut, smile and pose. They are fully programmable. Weâ€™ve been mixing them with models on the runway already, sneaking them in shows and no one has been the wiser. They arenâ€™t girls though, make no mistake.â€ Julian leaned in close; conspiratorially â€œThey are better.â€