A Field Guide to Merc In the Wild

Or, Merc is Going to a Convention and Here’s How to Say Hi!

It has been documented that A. Merc Rustad (humaniod roboticus) is going to the SFWA Nebulas convention in Chicago on May 12-15h, 2016. If you are of the persuasion to meet this authorperson, who is rarely seen in the wilds of ConLand, please refer to this scientific guide for the best results.

Screenshot 2016-05-11 18.58.33


Habits & Habitat

The Merc is known to inhabit the chill regions of the Midwest, where they are naturally found in quiet, dimly-lit caves or burrows. Bright lights and loud noises are known to make Merc cranky if subjected to such stimuli for long periods of time.

Merc does not drink alcoholic beverages, but is not perturbed by other persons consuming such drinks in their vicinity.

Aside from a deep dislike of onions, the Merc diet is omnivorous and Merc is especially found of cheese and cookies. Feeding of the Merc is encouraged by locals.

While a robot based on the introvert social model of programming, Merc enjoys meeting friends and new persons and is delighted to chat with you, and you are welcome to approach and say hi. Please do introduce yourself!

Also, the Merc is quite amicable to taking selfies with other persons.



Merc comes accessorized with various hats, some of which are pictured. Merc is also known to wear t-shirts (often with Deadpool-related artwork) and jeans, and in rare occasions, fancy coats and vests.

Merc is a non-binary robot and their pronouns are they/their/them and/or he/his/him. Either set is perfectly fine to use!

Screenshot 2016-05-11 18.58.23

Traits and Stats

Battery Level: moderate. Merc requires frequent recharging at designated charging stations (hotel room, dark & quiet spaces), so if Low Battery Warning occurs, please do not be alarmed or offended if Merc disappears to power back up.

Contact Level: low. Merc does not like physical contact; handshakes are always acceptable, and hugs are allowed if Merc is asked beforehand. Please do not surprise!touch Merc (such as hugs out of visual range, tackles, shoulder-pats, etc), for the authorperson tends to startle easily.

Known Software Bugs: The A. Merc model android has several quirks in programming of which one should be made aware. Merc has trouble reading faces or recognizing other persons, in particular if said persons do not match a static profile photo. Please do not be offended if the Merc does not recognize you by sight right away or has difficulty placing you to name-recognition pathways. Merc tries their best!

Also, Merc is not overly vocal, has limited “small chat” logs from which to engage in dialogue, does not discuss politics or religion, and does not appreciate argument. Merc is not liable for awkward pauses, dropped conversation, or forgotten topics of discussion carried over from previous runtime sessions.

However, regardless of known and unknown bugs, Merc is genial and happy to see people and would love to chat with you!

Screenshot 2016-05-11 18.58.52

(Bucky is not, to his sadness, coming with; so, no, fluffy cat not included.)

Features, or, Why Should You Say Hi To Merc?

Because Merc would love to meet you. Merc is happy to listen and engage in interesting discussions. In addition, Merc has adorable robot (business) cards to give you if you’d like one.

Merc likes to get to know new people and friends alike, and is excited to see friends and new people in personspace-mode. Merc is very approachable!

Also Merc is pretty dang cute (but is areo/ace and does not want to date anyone). Did this guide mention selfies? Because Merc enjoys goofy photos. (Please ask permission first.)

In conclusion, if you will be at the Nebulas and would like to hang out with, say hi to, wave at across a void, have meals with, or otherwise socialize with Merc, Merc would like to meet you! If you do not already have plans with Merc, the best method of contact, aside from radar or sonic locating, is to tweet at @Merc_Rustad.

Screenshot 2016-05-11 18.58.40

Merc hopes to see you this weekend!

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