“I told you! It’s not perfect, and it’s far away from ready. Give me the screwdriver. No, not that, the red one…Yeah, that one. Thanks. There’s beer in the fridge. Help yourself. I’m nearly done. This is going to be an awesome piece. Five more minutes.”

“You don´t have to tell me twice! You know, you´re all over this thing. What is it? Some kind of parrot? A mechanical one? Is it a parrot chick?”- “Yeah. Isn´t this the ugliest little thing you ever saw? Wait, until I install the voice chip and the speech processor. It will look like, and behave like a real parrot.” Nel smiles proudly.

“Is it for your robotics class? I thought you were already done, with the class… And look all the details… Real feathers? Amazing… I doubt that you´ll ever be ready”, I tell him.

Well, I tell his back. He already has his head bowed above his gimmickry. Again. I know Nel´s a genius, but this just annoying, and tiring. If I´m lucky, all I have to do now, is to make myself comfortable and wait. Eventually he´ll finish with whatever he is occupied with and we´ll get going… It is nothing really fancy and I have not planned much, a movie, grab some food, maybe gaming… I don´t care what we´ll do. Nel is my best friend, and I´m happy to see him, after being six months abroad.

After two hours of aggressive waiting and TV-watching, I decide to order some pizza. I´m really hungry. I think I can strike food off my list… Nel is hopeless. He really is. He has his own atmosphere it seems, his own world. Working tiny pincers under magnifying glasses, searching for the right elements for his toy. I´m bored and hungry. Bored. There should be something to read here… Twenty minutes later it´s ringing. The doorbell, of course. He just waves at the noise, like chasing away an annoying fly. Seriously! How does Nel even survive?!

So I answer the door, give the pizza guy ten bucks. What now? Nel´s back is bent over his mechanical toys.

I sit down near Nel, and hold a slice of hot fatty salami pizza in front of him, nearly touching the tip of his nose. It makes him recoil and fall off the chair he´s sitting on.

“What the hell?! Oh! Oz! Don´t laugh. You are here… Sorry. I guess. I got carried away. Again. What were we supposed to do today?” Nel asks pushing his magnifying lenses down his nose.

Weird. It never occurred to me, that he could forget. “Nel…”

“Yeah? What? Why, do I have the feeling, that I should apologize? What did I forget?”, he asks.

“Nel. It’s. It’s my birthday…” Why did I expect him to remember, in the first place? I don’t know. He remembered last year though…

“Forget it. Just forget it.”

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