It’s 2017, and while it’s not exactly a Big Tech Question, it’s one that needs an answer: what won’t Meat Loaf do for love?
The Tech part comes in answering this 24-year-old dilemma, because search engines and digital assistants have become so smart that some of them aren’t flummoxed by this random question. So here, according to the finest technological brains available, is what the big fella won’t do for the love of a good woman.
Let’s face it, Siri is a dullard. The robotic High Prince of the Mundane who refuses to engage in anything that might be considered trivial. When asked, “What won’t Meat Loaf do for love?” Siri coughs up a long list of web search results, starting with the Wikipedia entry for I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That). Nobody’s got time to read that.
Alexa’s a playful sort, a more game girl than Serious Siri. Surely she’s going to deliver a delightful bon mot to our question? She thinks about it, her blue light swirling like a squad car on the way to an armed robbery, before replying: “Sorry, I don’t know the answer to that.” Did she mean that that or was it just a coincidental standard reply? Oh, Alexa, you minx. You’re either too clever for your own good or not clever enough.
If you’ve got a serious question, Wolfram Alpha is the place for serious answers. Sadly, we don’t have a serious question and Wolfram’s having none of our nonsense. “Wolfram Alpha doesn’t understand your query,” the computational knowledge engine replies, before serving up nutritional data on meat loaf (the food, not the rock star). Wolfram would do anything for love, but it won’t do fat.
Cortana sits like an anxious puppy in the bottom corner of my Windows 10 screen every day, aching to be asked something. Anything. So can it finally prove its worth by telling us what a 69-year-old overweight rock star with a troubling history of heart problems won’t do for a slab of affection, before it’s too late?
No. No, it can’t. All it can tell us is the exact opposite of what we need to know.
So let’s stop messing around. Let’s put the question to the search engine that 99% of people would have asked in the first place. OK, Google: what won’t Meat Loaf do for love?
Of course, it has an answer. Of sorts.
“Meat Loaf believed that the lyrics were unambiguous,” Google starts replying, as if Meat Loaf were a character from The Bible, “but Steinman [who’s he?] predicted that they would cause confusion. An early episode of the VH1 program Pop-up Video made this claim at the end of the song’s video: ‘Exactly what Meat Loaf won’t do for love remains a mystery to this day.'”
Fair play, Google. You gave it your best shot. But answer a question to which there’s no definitive answer? You won’t do that. Oh no, you won’t do that.