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  • by Carolyn Lackey

Automa Ticlly

I woke up early this morning and opened the Amazon box that contained my newest toy. A baby monitor. Make that a Meems monitor.

Meems' room at the new place is across the house from the kitchen area. Her voice is too tiny to be heard up close - much less far away. Her mind is too confused to use a call button correctly. She tends to keep her finger on it at all times randomly pushing the button. I did the exact same thing with the button on the morphine pump after my first C-section. Don't worry, it had a built-in timer for people like me that fear pain.

After researching the choices on Amazon, I selected a BaieShiji video monitor. I had never heard of the BaieShiji company but assumed, based on the reviews, this it's an up and coming technology mogul in Japan.

So, I'm reading the directions for set up when I came to the words "automa ticlly" [my pronunciation = "ah TOME ah" and "tick lee"] I'm somewhat techno savvy. Why had I never of this? I stood looking at those two words for a minute or two. Hmmm. Ah-TOME-ah tick-lee, ah-TOME-ah-tick-lee... The word sounded more anatomical than technological.

"On Thursday, the doctor is going to remove that creepy wart from my automa ticlly."

I reread the sentence for context clues. "Once the adapter connects...then the unit will turn on...ah-TOME-ah tick-lee. " Then, I read aloud, "So, once it CONNECTS...the UNIT will turn on...ah-TOME-ah tick-lee." What the heck is the ah-TOME-ah tick-lee?" Then, it hit me.


I laughed out loud. When Alan came into the kitchen, I showed him the words and asked him what they meant. He was as confused as I had been. "It's supposed to be 'AUTOMATICALLY,'" I told him. "Ohhhhh."

I then began reading over the whole instruction sheet. It's riddled with mistakes. The Japanese have mastered electronics. Translating information to English is not their strongest suit.

We get a big laugh at the Lackey house when we remember some of the boys' misread words of years gone by. The CompUSA store at the mall was "come-pew-sa." Driving up Slide Road nearing the loop one day, a little boy voice from the way back of my minivan asked, "Mo-om, what's 'Kire Coot Kitty?'" What...whut?! We had just driven past Circuit City. During a family game night, a category of a guessing game was "min-eye-ser-eyes." There were about eight adults in the room scratching their heads on that one. Can you guess it? OK. I'll tell you. It was "miniseries." We laughed so hard. Misreading is a genetic trait in mi familia.

Until I take this new toy to Meems' place, I'm going to keep a sharp eye on this little guy. I've already automa ticlly glanced at the screen about 50 times. So far, he's been quieter than a mouse.

I leave you with this...

credit: Michelle Bartlett's youtube video

Michelle, your laughter makes me laugh so hard!!!!

"What is happening?"

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