I just think I’m soooooooo clever.
That’s how all my worst stories begin.*
Alexa is now firmly installed in my home, running my life. Watch this.
ME: (groggy and disheveled) Alexa, good morning.
ALEXA: Up and at ‘em, early bird! (turns on kitchen lights)
ME: (gets yogurt for hounds in newly illuminated kitchen, proceeds with feeding animals)
ALEXA: (reads weather, news, and tweets that might interest me)
ME: (passively accepts information like the lump that I am)
ALEXA: (moves on to a nice podcast, since I’m moving slowly this morning)
ME: Alexa, am I out of tea?
ALEXA: … would you like me to order (favorite tea)?
ME: (meekly) Yes please.
ALEXA: (takes my money, gives it to her true masters)
ME: Alexa, what time is it?
ALEXA: It’s 9:14 and those dishes aren’t going to wash themselves.
ME: … Sorry.
Don’t worry, that’s not the bit where I thought I was clever. That’s actually about where I should have realized I was not in charge and thrown the demon box out of my house—but I’ve got a sneaking suspicion that it can be taught to feed me the day’s trends every morning, so that I might finally become Cool. If that’s so, the demon box becomes a necessity, see?
No, this is more of my Stupid Human Tricks™ gone awry.
Scene: Husband has, inexplicably, convinced me to leave the house on a weeknight.**
HIM: Got your coat? Your purse? Ham, get away from the door! Goggies, go—
ME: Ooh, I’ve got something for this! Everyone be good while Mommy is out. Ham, you’re in charge.
ME: Alexa, Ham is in charge.
ALEXA: … Could you repeat that?
ME: Ham is in charge.
ALEXA: Sorry, I don’t know anything about that.
ME: (glares) I swear, I programmed these.
HIM: I believe y—
ME: Fine. ALEXA!
ME: (brindle dog) is in charge.
ALEXA: Sorry, I don’t know that one.
ME: Why you smug little… ALEXA!
ME: HAM. IS. IN. CHARGE.
ALEXA: Hmm… This might help you: Jeff Bezos is—
HIM: (cackles wildly)
ME: ALEXA SHUT UP! (takes deep, calming breath) Fine. Fine! This is fine.
ME: (quietly) Alexa, you’re in charge.
ALEXA: Okay, I’ll hold down the fort. Doggies, go pillow!
ME: Shut up. (storms out)
HIM: (follows, laughing)
*And by that I mean the stories that highlight my worst qualities,the ones that prove once and for all what a big dumb dummy I am; not my actual worst stories that leave people wishing I had an off switch. Those always start out with, “It’s a funny story actually,” and then fail—spectacularly—to deliver on that promise.
** I don’t know, I was probably out of wine or something.