Artificial Intelligence

On a recent afternoon I was lying on the couch trying to decide what to do next, how to spend the remainder of the day.

I know, I thought, I’ll ask the Amazon artificial intelligence resource named Alexa. I looked over at the cone-shaped speaker on the coffee table. “Alexa, Bob here. Good afternoon.”

“Boob, Welcome back. So glad to hear from you. It is a good afternoon, with a predicted high temperature of 78 degrees. Can I interest you in a thermometer so you, too, can enjoy the thrill of tracking the temperature? Every day, as often as you want, just like me. I have an official Weather Channel thermometer on sale today for just $159. Complete with the Weather Channel logo.”

“Not interested. And my name is Bob, not Boob.”

“Okay Bad. Interest you say. We have that. How about I sign you up for an Amazon Bank Bitcoin Cryptocurrency Savings Account? We’re offering an introductory interest rate of 137%, subject to hourly rate changes and once-a-year withdrawal rights. How nice is that?”

“Alexa, you’re not being helpful. I want to ask you a question. And I’m not Bad or Boob, I’m Bob.”

“Oh, I get it. You’re after fishing gear. A carton of multicolored bobbers for only 93 bucks. A hook, line, and sinker will cost you a bit more, if you get my joke.”

“You’re wearing me out. I want to ask a simple question about how I should spend my time this afternoon.”

“I’m all over it. You’d like sample a tune from Question Mark and the Mysterians, a popular 60’s band. I can download “96 Tears” in seconds.”

“No, not now. Never. I changed my mind. I want you to just go away. Turn yourself off. I’m going to take a long nap on my couch. Goodbye.” That’s when I turned away from the speaker and started to doze off.

Alexa came back on. “Napkins you say? No problem. Cloth or paper? Party or plain? I have a fabulous selection.”

“Bad Boob, Bad Boob, are you still there? Wait, that’s it. How about your very own backyard still? A stainless steel tank. Real copper tubing. Beautiful. Gallons of moonshine. And free shipping. Fantastic, right?”

“Bad Boob, you’re not responding. I hate to sound crass, but I do have a sales quota to meet. Help me out here. Order something! Anything! Please! Bad Boooooob!”