Here are a few of the questions I asked. Thanks to readers who sent in suggestions. Please keep them coming, as I plan to cross-examine Siri again soon. (Come to think of it, perhaps I should ask her, "Where were you on the night of January 16th?")
Q: How do you pronounce 'pecan'? (Shout out to reader AKA Jane Random)
A: Siri said she was checking her sources, then came back with a Wolfram Alpha search result which said 'pecan' was properly pronounced ‘p’eek,on.’ Score one for Siri.
Q: How far north can you grow okra? (Mike Ratcliffe)
A: "I'm checking your current location." At the time, I was driving from North Carolina to Virginia, so Siri came back with a listing for a business called Kids on the Grow in Hillsborough, N.C. Um, not too helpful, Siri.
Q: Where are the best places to shag? (Mike Ratcliffe)
A: "I've found a number of places…23 of them are close to you…I've sorted them by rating." Given the universal meaning of the word 'shag,' which is familiar to Austin Powers fans, and 'shag' as in beach music, I expected either seedy hotels, Myrtle Beach nightclubs, or both. Instead, Siri coughed up a golf range and a place that sold chairs. Say what?
Q: How do you make a Mint Julep? (Claudia)
A: "Checking my sources," Siri replied. After scratching her virtual head for a moment, she delivered a page of Google search results, the first of which was a recipe for mint juleps from the site cocktails.about.com. Let's raise a frosted silver cup to Siri!
Q: Is Texas considered part of the South? (This was one of my dumb questions)
A: "It is hot in Austin, Texas," Siri replied, and then gave me the Texas city's weather report. Yes, the South is hot, Siri. Oh dear Lord, you should spend an August in Atlanta. But just because Texas is hot, you shouldn't assume that Texas is part of the South. (I'm still debating that one myself.)
Q: What would you do with a cat on a hot tin roof? (Me again)
A: Siri gave me a list of nearby roofing contractors. Perhaps the local fire department might have been more appropriate. Or even better, Siri, next time brush up on your Tennessee Williams and say "Jump off, Maggie! Jump off!" And if you mentioned 'no-neck monsters,' I might die of joy right there on the spot.
Tune in next time when I ask Siri more Southern questions, like "Would you like some more sweet tea?," and "What do Southerners really mean when they say 'bless her heart'"?