Always on the lookout for ways to spread the word, and create a community around the programme, it occurred to me to check that it could be accessed via the Amazon Echo device, otherwise known as Alexa.
So I tried. I asked very nicely, I asked even more politely, I spoke through gritted teeth, I shouted. Nothing worked. “Alexa, please play “Am I Old Yet?”. “Alexa, please play The Podcast Am I Old Yet?” “Alexa, please play Am I Old Yet The Podcast by Flloyd Kennedy”, “Alexa, please play anything by Flloyd Kennedy”
“Music by Flloyd Kennedy is not available, unless you pay up for the expensive version of Amazon Music” — or words to that effect — was the response. So I paid for the subscription, and lo and behold, she played my songs. But still, no podcast.
I asked my son, who lives in Seattle, hence much closer in geographical terms to Alexa. He got it. I asked my friends and family in the UK and Australia, who didn’t. Someone in Canada got it.
And then, suddenly, she found it. I said “stop” while I had a think. For those of you who don’t have one of these little torture devices, that is how you get her to stop playing something. Then I asked for it again, and got something with no relation to my podcast. Again.
Yesterday, I had a brilliant idea. (Just so you know, all of my ideas are brilliant, until they aren’t). I turned off the radio. I spoke slowly, clearly, politely. “Alexa, please play Am I Old Yet Podcast”. And there it was. And there is it, again and again. And again. I have to stop now.