Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Alexa, Big Brother's Little Sister

Orwellianism (is that a word?) is alive and well. Like a terrifying sequel, 70 years after George Orwell unleashed Big Brother on the literary world (and my nightmares) via his novel Nineteen Eighty Four, Big Brother has a new little sister. And she's real. No, not alive, but apparently every bit as real. Just this past week it came out that Amazon has had Alexa record some people's conversations. Deja vu, anyone?

George Orwell (in case you've been living under a rock) was a democratic socialist (sound familiar?) who wrote a dystopian novel about a futuristic authoritarian society were citizens were kept under constant surveillance. Big Brother is watching you! But this aint your mama's (or Orwell's) 1984. These days Big Brother actually is watching you in public (CCTV sound familiar?) and, in the sequel, little sister Alexa is not only listening to you but recording you. For their review. Right inside your own home. Welcome back, nightmares.

I may not be an emperor, but I sure am starting to feel like I have no clothes.

Alexa, Big Brother's auditory little sister | Graphic property of www.BakingInATornado.com | #politics #humor

Creepy, yes, but also mortifying. What have I been saying? What has Alexa been hearing and {{gasp}} recording? Well, in my house . . .

~ After hearing "what have we got to eat?" for the hundredth time: "Alexa, where is the bewst place int he house to hide from Hubs?"

~ After a marathon day of shopping: "Alexa, what day does the master card bill come?"
Followed by: "Alexa, can you book Hubs a tee time on master card bill day?"

~ In the winter: "Alexa, can you tell Mother Nature to stop the snow?"

~ In the spring: "Alexa, why do the Red Sox suck this year?"

~ In the heat of the summer: "Alexa, how do you build an ocean?"

~ "Alexa, can you tell I'm not wearing a bra?"

~ "Alexa, why does that moron next door have to mow his lawn at 8 am?"

~ "Alexa, why is there a soggy bowl of cereal on top of my book shelf?"

~ After hearing the size of the honey-do list: "Alexa, where is the best place in the house to hide from the wife?"

~ After "the wife" finds him and hands him the list: "Alexa, what's a good excuse for having been found sitting in the crawl space?"

~ "Alexa, can you tell my wife that you finished off the Blackberry Pie Cake she made this morning?"
Then, under his breath: "And if you don't want to spend the night on the couch, tell her it was delicious."

Blackberry Pie Cake, full of blackberry flavor this cake comes together in minutes. Mix, bake, cool, frost and serve. | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #cake

Blackberry Pie Cake
Blackberry Pie Cake, full of blackberry flavor this cake comes together in minutes. Mix, bake, cool, frost and serve. | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #cake

~ "Alexa, where did I leave that bowl of cereal I was eating?"

The Boys:
~ After hearing me say that the lawn needs mowing: "Alexa, where is the best place in the house to hide from mom? And don't say the crawl space, I hear that didn't go well for dad."

~ (whispering): "Alexa, where did mom hide her stash of pistachios."

~ College Boy when job hunting: "Alexa, what states have legalized marijuana?"

~ "Alexa, who ate all the cereal?"

~ "Alexa, how much wood would a wood chuck chuck if a wood chuck could chuck wood?"

~ "Alexa, who's smarter, you or Siri?"

Jeff Bezos, owner of Amazon, had his private selfies (coincidentally, private selfies of his privates) that he had sent to his girlfriend released publicly. And I just have to say that when the owner of a company that has deliberately compromised people's privacy gets divorced because HIS privacy has been compromised, well that has to be some kind of epic karma.

Baking In A Tornado signature | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics

Blackerry Pie Cake

1 box white cake mix
1 large can (21 oz) blackberry pie filling
1/3 cup oil
3 eggs

1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup seedless blackberry jam
1/4 cup blackberry brandy
3 cups powdered sugar
6 oz fresh blackberries, rinse and pat dry

*Grease and flour a 9 X 13 pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
*Beat the cake mix, pie filling, oil and eggs for 2 minutes. Spread evenly into the prepared pan.
*Bake for 25 to 35 minutes or until the center springs back to the touch. Cool completely.
*Beat the butter, jam and brandy. Slowly, 1/2 cup at a time, beat in the powdered sugar until the frosting reaches spreading consistency. 
*Set aside 1/2 cup of frosting for garnish, if desired. Spread the remaining frosting over the cooled cake. Cut into 24 pieces, decorate with the remaining frosting and the fresh blackberries.


  1. Too funny! I love the 'Little Sister" concept. So true!! The cake looks yummy. Hope no crumbs were left in the crawl space.

    1. Ha ha, I better grab a broom and go check that crawl space.

  2. We don't have Alexa, she is available but we don't have her, my parents have Google mini and dad likes to ask Google random questions all day. Often at night when mum & I talk on the phone Google suddenly starts answering mum and cracks her up

  3. Alexa is now unplugged. Wouldn't want child services to show up because I told the five-year old he needs a nap.

    1. You jest(I think), but it does feel like it's coming to that.

  4. ALexa: Which of the Friends' stars has the biggest boobs.

    No, wait, that is what I asked google. I'm safe from google right??

  5. Little sister? Well, both Alexa and Siri live in my house. I have Alexa near the TV but my son has been after me to get rid of her...I mean, it. Maybe he's right. Siri doesn't creep me out near as much, but I find myself not even using my echo dot all that much except to ask the ages of people. I have this thing about the age of people in the news. "Alexa, how old is Alex Trebek? Alexa how old is Robert Mueller?" But I digress. That is one pretty cake. But first I have to live down my mangling of your Pina Colada cake before I will be permitted near an oven again. (topic for a future blog post.)

    1. Oh, I'm sure going to look forward to that future post!

  6. Funny post! We don't have Alexa, and I don't want her either for fear of being put on dj's list! Beautiful cake. Vicky


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