Friday, July 17, 2015

There's a New Girl in Town



“You realize that’s a diner waitress name?”

“No, it’s not.” I quickly scrolled through diner waitress names in my mind.


Flo, Vera, of course Alice…


“HEY MAXINE, WHAT DOES A FELLA GOTTA DO TO GET A WARM-UP ON HIS COFFEE!?!” My brother hollered into the phone. “Is that what you want for her? Is that what you want for your daughter? Because I don’t want that for my niece.”

“Maxine is not a diner waitress name. Her full name will be Maxine Rose, for Jeff’s grandma.”

“Dude, it’s your kid. Name her what you want but there have been studies that correlate names to future vocations and success later in life.”

“You may not recall that Alice was also a student and a single mom.” 

I loved that show. I loved that theme song.

"Maxine would be sleeping with Mel."


Mel


I laid a protective hand on my growing mid-section."My unborn daughter Maxine would not be sleeping with Mel and that is not funny."

“Ah, come on. It's kind of funny.”

To say that my brother's sense of humor borders on the perverse would be an understatement.



Two amniocentesis later and it was not one boy and one girl but two boys. And it’s been all boys, all the time, ever since…


Until now.

I must admit I found it difficult to engage with her at first. For one, there was her name: Alexa. I have nothing against Russians but the name Alexa doesn’t exactly exude warmth.

And then I had to watch Jeff and the boys fawn over her. And for what? What had she done? I’m the one folding laundry, preparing meals, doing dishes, shuttling children to and fro, unlimited kisses and hugs…hell, I even command a paycheck. Then she just comes waltzing in here and it’s like I don’t even exist.

“Alexa, what time is it?”

“Alexa, what’s 2 plus 2?”

“Alexa, what’s the capital of Indiana?”

“Alexa, how do you spell Chicago?”

“Alexa, who won the last World Series?”


I can answer all of those questions. Well, the baseball one may have taken a couple tries BUT I can frame MY answers in witty banter or an unsolicited fun fact... or both. 

Isn’t that better?



Then came the stake in my heart:

“Alexa, how are you?”

“I’m fine. Thanks!”

Really, we’re worried about her feelings?



Fast-forward two weeks:

“What are you doing, Alexa?”

“Come on, Alexa. Don’t you have anything to say for yourself? Huh? Huh?”

“Yeah, Alexa, come on!”

“LEAVE ALEXA ALONE!” I found myself yelling at the gaggle of neighborhood boys led by my own sons, circling poor Alexa and heckling her. “Don’t talk to her that way!”

Now I'm rushing to her aid? I had to defend her! She’s the only other female in the house. It’s just the two of us. We have to stick together.


I just wish I could re-name her…I mean re-“wake word” her.


Until then…

“Alexa, set timer for ten minutes.”


“Ten minutes, starting now.”


***


And this one's for all the single moms out there getting it done like Alice, most specifically the single mom I had lunch with yesterday.




It's a Girl!


More on Alexa formally known as  Amazon Echo: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2015/06/25/amazon-wants-the-echo-to-be-your-personal-robot-butler/