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'Amy's Answering Machine': More Messages

Amy's real answering machine
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Amy's real answering machine
<I>Amy's Answering Machine</I>, the book
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<I>Amy's Answering Machine</I>, the book

What would you do if your mother left this message on your answering machine?: "I'm just thinking, if God forbid you needed to get out of your apartment real fast, maybe you ought to get yourself a parachute."

Or this one: "I hope you're still taking your allergy shots. I don't like that sneeze. [A friend who was allergic] gave one good sneeze and she went into labor."

Well, if you're former advertising executive-turned-comedian Amy Borkowsky -- whose wildly successful compilation of her Mom's messages were collected on a CD and book titled Amy's Answering Machine -- you'd put out a sequel CD, of course. Call it Volume 2: More Messages from Mom.

"You know, everybody's getting a big kick out of my mother," Borkowsky tells NPR's John Ydstie. She heard that a fan even threw a "momioke party," where guests took turns mouthing her Mom's messages while playing them.

Borkowsky insists that her mother is like everybody else's. "She's just a little more extreme." Other mothers are creative in finding alternate uses for things, like converting an old sock into a dusting mitt or making a vase out of a wine bottle. "My mother calls me up a couple of weeks ago to say that the ladies' room in an airport can also be used as a tornado shelter."

There's no telling how far her mother's imagination might wander, as in this message: "Amila, I'm having second thoughts about that little palm-size computer that you bought. You could swallow it and, God forbid, choke... I just read an article about a fellow who lost a tiny cell phone and when he dialed his own number to try and locate it, he heard a ringing sound coming from his dog..."

Borkowsky says her mother's messages drive her crazy, "but I love her and I want her in my life. I'm not going to break up with her [and say]... 'Look Mom, this relationship isn't going anywhere and I'd like to start seeing other mothers.'"

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.