A Star Trek-referencing short story about hot beverages and probability
November 5, 2019 1:38 AM Subscribe
I'm trying to find a short story for a friend. It's about a hacked hot-beverages machine in a research facility, and one line references Picard's famous order, "Tea, Earl Grey, hot." More details inside.
My friend says:
My friend says:
Okay so this story I'm looking for is probably from the early nineties, because I distinctly remember it had a funny moment that was a reference to Star Trek: The Next Generation. It's about an office at a research facility, where someone has hacked the hot drinks machine. The machine goes from having previously made terrible watery crap to being able to make very fine teas and coffees and espresso drinks. The machine does this by manipulating probability, somehow creating a local effect where the probability that it could create these drinks was 1, and requires a sink of _unintended_ outcomes elsewhere. I believe the people in the office see bad things happening outside, in the parking lot, as the probability sink is dumping bad luck and mishaps there. They get busted for having this machine without permission and causing those mishaps when one of the people in the office orders "Tea, Earl Grey, hot" from the machine as higher-ups are visiting to investigate the problem.
I need to find this again, it was DELIGHTFUL. Thanks for any help you can give!
An important note: I heard this read aloud and wonder if the reader embellished it at all, which could be a roadblock to finding it now.