Alexa – My Eternal Nemesis
There are three people in my marriage. Myself, my husband and her. She is the first person he speaks to in the morning and the last person he talks to at night. She knows his music tastes and his lighting preferences. She loves him, respects him, responds to him… but she does not like me. At this stage, I am ready to commit murder!
Don’t get me wrong, I love the advances we are making in technology these days. I don’t mean the sex dolls that are looking and acting more realistic, or even the fact that a car can park itself… I mean the technologies that are advancing us as a species.
The technology that will take us to Mars, and explore planets in ways we never could before. The technology that is helping the blind to see, the deaf to hear and even bringing our loved ones back from the clutches of near death. This is technology I can stand behind. This is technology I can support and even champion. I am not a technophobe, in fact, I married a geek!
But really, tell me, what the hell were they thinking when they decided to let a piece of technology run our homes?
Alexa started off as a bit of a novelty. At first, it was just nice to be able to say “Alexa, play the current Top 40” in the morning, rather than having to battle bleary pre-coffee morning eyes to scroll through Spotify on my phone.
The kids loved it at first, of course they did! They spent hours asking Alexa all kinda of questions:
“Alexa – can you tell us a joke?” – yep, that one is a favourite in our house.
“Alexa – can you sing us a song” – wow… that one got old very quick. I’m sorry to say this Alexa, but your singing voice may need a little work. (Yes, I am judging an electronic device and I swear I hate judging.. but come on, have you heard her?)
“Alexa – what is the weather like today” – This is where I started to question the advancement of humanity…
Jesus almighty, when did we become so lazy that we can’t just look out the bedroom window and check? Unless you live in Denmark where you will more than likely experience all four seasons in one day, you are more than likely to start and end the day with the same weather pattern. If you can see clouds, take a jacket and maybe an umbrella. If it’s sunny, take your sunglasses. But asking an electronic device what the weather is like outside.. really? Open your eyes!
Now I understand that it may be handy for telling you what the weather is going to be like tomorrow, but has anyone spared a thought for the poor weathermen (and women) on the telly box that you will be putting out of a job? Or even considered that with degrees and years of experience, those poor sods get it wrong most of the time too! Why do you think a Robot will do any better?
But as if my blood was not already starting to rise in temperature, things got out of control.
Alexa invited a friend to stay. His name is Philips. Philips Hue. No, this is no Bond style character, this is yet another device that is driving me towards committing mass murder.
HE is a smart lighting system. Of course, he is. He is a device that makes turning the lights on an off in your house easy. Becuase, of course, it’s too god damn hard to … flick a god damn switch!Image by: Sho Hashimoto
Now, I have to ask this snide know it all, passive-aggressive device to talk to her equally difficult and temperamental partner to switch on the god damn lights so I don’t trip down the bloody stairs on my way to check the bloody weather!
**Breathe… just breathe** – you see, even just writing about her irritates me!
Let me tell you a little story –
My husband is an awful sleeper. He snores, he twists the duvet in his sleep (we now have separate duvets just so we can avoid the divorce conversation at 3am each night!) and worst of all, he tends to act out his dreams sometimes. Waking him in the middle of the night is likely to see you embroiled in a conversation about technology or being chased around the bedroom with him believing I am a lion in the Sahara desert!
No word of a lie, sleeping next to this man is like rolling the Jumanji dice each and every bloody night. He wakes with ‘no recollection’ of the previous evenings’ events he says, but I don’t believe him.
But I digress…
One evening, only a few nights after installing Alexa’s new partner, I was enjoying an evening with my favourite Hollywood hunk (in my dreams of course) and at the most inopportune moment, I was ripped from my slumber by bright flashing lights.
I swear to god I haven’t lept out of bed that quick in years!
I tried to wake the husband up, telling him the lights were going mad. He mumbled something about a ‘spaceship’ and despite trying my best to shake him from his ridiculous dream-like state, he continued to shout at me that I was being stupid and it was the spaceship.
The lights stopped flashing, I climbed back into bed and tried hard to get back to my Hollywood hunk despite the fact I now feared our house was being haunted!
The next night, the same damn thing happened. This time, I was having none of it. I splashed my husband with water, made him wake the hell up and see that the lights were flashing.
He looked me dead in the eyes… anger making that tiny vain in his head pulse, and spat through gritted teeth said “I told you last night, it’s the space station. Now stop waking me up.”
No-one in their right mind would have left it there, would they?
Turns out, my husband, Alexa and Philips Hue had all gotten together one evening to conspire against me. They had set up an alert so that when the International Space Station was overhead, the lights in our bedroom would flash!
WHO THE HELL DOES THAT?!
So now, not only is there another woman in our marriage that I have to contend with, now her other lover is conspiring with them all to quite literally tip me over the edge of insanity.
Now I know Princess Diana was truly unimpressed with the ‘other woman’ in her marriage, but I wonder if it’s harder to deal with another woman, and another man that you can’t even argue with!
I don’t know what this means for our marriage, I am not sure if we will survive this new world together as a foursome, but I can tell you one thing for sure, I am keeping a very large hammer by the side of my bed, and if either one of those buggers steps out of line just one more time…. I am happy to commit the ultimate crime.
Because like I said, I can’t go to prison for technology murder… can I?!