Illustration by David Fitzsimmons / Arizona Daily Star

---Life has too many passwords.

And pin numbers.

Multiple times a day my iPhone demands my iTunes password. Honestly, I didn’t even know I had an account.

Instagram needs a password. Facebook needs a password. Twitter needs a password. Even my kids need them. Well, technically it’s their school accounts that require ‘em. Everything at work needs a password, including email and then there’s my home account. And those darn passwords have to be changed regularly lest someone from Russia hack in and uncover important intel like what I’m making for dinner that week.

Even Target, since that massive data breach, makes me punch in a PIN, which, I actually do remember since I’m there three times a week. That credit-card bill is epic. Seriously, I should have a parking spot with my name on it. Pony up, Northeast Target. I earned one.

But, please, no more passwords. No more pins.

My. Head. Is. Full.

I was trying to skip out of the house the other day when Big Daddy thrust the phone into my hand. It was an insurance company I’d had a life insurance policy with for years. Apparently.

He was trying to pay the premium, had forgotten the password, got locked out and the only person who could fix the situation is the one whose name was on the policy. Now, I know what you’re thinking — I, too, read People magazine. But, trust me, I’m in no danger of being one of those suburban moms who gets “disappeared.”

I’m way more valuable alive. I’m the only one who knows where extra dental floss is kept. My peeps would not only suffer gum disease but would literally die without me. Really. You see, the members of my family suffer from this weird visual defect that renders them completely blind to things located in their direct field of vision. They would starve if I weren’t around.

Any of my children, standing with the fridge doors wide open: “Mom! I can’t find the leftover pizza!”

Me: “Oh, you mean the pizza in that large, rectangular white box that’s right at eye level? Straight in front of your face?”

So, I was stuck on the phone — while my REDcard and I had a pressing date with Target — with this too-young woman who was chirpy and polite and annoyed the heck out of me. We’ll call her Siri.

Siri: “And how are you on this lovely day today, ma’am?”

Me, uttering a protracted sigh: “Annoyed.”

Siri: “I completely understand, ma’am. Well, I will walk you through every step of resetting the password to your account and we’ll go ahead and create a new online ID for you. OK?!”

Goody. My favorite way to spend a Saturday. This I did not say out loud, but I figure I communicated it pretty clearly with another super long sigh.

Siri: “First, we’ll reset your online ID. Type in the number you see on the screen and then you can create your own. It’s case-sensitive and should have capital letters, symbols and use numbers.”

I did what I always do when I reach this level of frustration with 21st century life, I banged out a swear word. With a capital letter, symbol and number, of course.

Giggles erupted on the other end of the line. Whoops. Did not realize Siri could see what I was typing.

So, 20 minutes of my Saturday. Pffft gone. But at least I still have an up-to-date insurance policy that’ll pay out around 150 bucks should I perish. And after all that time and effort, I almost think I should meet an untimely end just to make it all worthwhile. Ha. I’m kidding! Don’t worry, kids. Your gums are safe. I plan on hanging around for a long time.

Contact Kristen Cook at or 573-4194. On Twitter: So, lest you assume Cook has indeed been offed for the insurance money when you don’t see this column in a few weeks, be assured she is still alive and kicking — just writing other stories. Minivan Momologues is making like a prime-time TV show and going on hiatus, hopefully to return in the fall. In the meantime, go figure out Suduku. That’s always around and better for your brain anyway.