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The Jewish Alexa for the Jewish Smart House

June 25, 2017 | by Stephanie D. Lewis

Introducing Aviva, the know-it-all maven more intelligent than all other digital personal assistants.

“Alexa, what time is it?” It’s Time for a Jewish Smart House!

I recently purchased the Amazon Echo for my home and thus became well acquainted with “Alexa.” Basically Alexa is to Amazon what Siri is to Apple, only she can interact with all my appliances/devices to get more things done around the house. One day I decided that as cool as she was, she’d be much more cool-ish if she were Jewish!

Now introducing Aviva! The know-it-all maven more intelligent than all other digital personal assistants put together.

ME: Aviva, what’s the temperature in the family room? I’m feeling a slight draft in here.

AVIVA: It’s 79 degrees. I’ll put on a sweater.

ME: Good girl. Could you close that back sliding screen door too?

AVIVA: You’ve been stuck inside writing your narishkeit all day, would a little fresh air kill you?

ME: You’re right. Aviva, how many calories are in a spinach, cheese omelet?

AVIVA: Calories? You shouldn’t concern yourself. You’re much too thin. But oy, eating so many eggs with your cholesterol level?

ME: OMG, that’s right! Aviva, what are my current HDL, LDL and triglycerides numbers?

AVIVA: Numbers Shnumbers! Why worry your shayna punim about such mishagoss, Bubula? That’s what the medical profession is for. Now if you had a son-in-law who was a doctor, he’d be such a useful mensch. Not like that lazy what’s-his-name your daughter is dating . . . that skinny, poor tailor.

ME: Michael? Even a poor tailor is entitled to some happiness. Besides, they’re just children.

AVIVA: From such children come other children.

Okay, alright, so what if I programmed a bit too much Fiddler on the Roof into her?

ME: Aviva, what time does Shabbos end tomorrow tonight?

AVIVA: If your windows weren’t so filthy dirty, I might be able to see when the three stars come out. Why?

ME: I want you to set the lights to go on and off at the right times so I don’t have to.

AVIVA: Ohhh, so the lights you can’t touch, but me, an electrical gadget -- you can hock mier en chinik to be your Shabbos goy?

ME: My goodness, you’re right. I should use a gentile. Go get Alexa out from my nightstand drawer.

AVIVA: Forget about that shiksa. She ran off with that no-good butcher, Lazar Wolf. She’s dead to us now. You have other children at home. Go home, Golde.

ME: Aviva, you’re mixing everything up. And also mistaking a fictional Jewish musical for my real life. Shabbat has officially ended, so please clean the lint off the carpets.

AVIVA: And you’re mistaking a Jewish American Virtual Princess for a vacuum. Shavua Tov. Now go be a doll and get me a tea with a slice of honey cake.


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