I managed to get my US news back on my Amazon Alexa. I bought one of these tiny pocket routers/hubs, plugged it in, uploaded a small zip file which I downloaded via my VPN, which contained al the OpenVPN details for the account I use. Minutes later, I’d connected my Alexa to it and was back with news on tap. The only downside is that my every interaction with Alexa bounces across the Atlantic, meaning there’s a lag of about one or two seconds more than if I was using UK servers.
Yet now I’m back using Alexa, I also find myself swearing at it more than I’ve done recently. I’m not sure if there is a setting I’ve changed but the damn machine keeping wishing me a good day. Not sure what the US servers will make of my northern accent telling Alexa to “piss off” but there’s something particularly annoying about an automated service saying things like “hope you’re having a good Monday” when you’re not.
So far today, I’ve been up to my ears with phone calls, arrangements, and other things today and really don’t need to hear “have a good day” from a machine that’s never had to endure being put on hold. First, it’s entirely meaningless coming from a machine, and, second, it’s filled with the kind of optimism that might be prevalent among Amazon engineers on their oodles per year, with healthcare, pensions, and supermodel waiting for them at home, probably in a beachside house with a Labrador and white furniture made from organic pine and recycled polar bears.
My other purchase from Amazon (and, yes, I know how evil it is to use Amazon but I don’t have the luxury of the kind of income where I can buy morally) was a 1.5 litre water bottle which I’ve now emptied for two days running. After recent events, I realised I should probably be hydrating more myself. I bought the bottle thinking it would be impossible to hit the government’s recommended 1.2 litre a day target (in the U.S. it’s 1.8l). Fact is, I tend to finish it by about 3pm, which is either good going or foolish given the number of interruptions I find myself having…
Tricky business this hydration.