Siri on iPhone vs. Google Maps on Android. And SALTIMBANCO!

Last night as we headed toward Oakland to attend Cirque du Soleil Saltimbanco show at the Petersen Events Center, this happened:

My husband, into his iPhone:  “Petersen Events Center.”

Siri: “I’m sorry. I can’t find any events in Peterson.”

Me: “What are you doing?”

Husband: “Trying to pull up a map around the event center. I want to see which side streets are around it and maybe find some on-street parking.”

Me: “Oh.”

Husband, into iPhone:  “Where is the Petersen Events Center?”

Siri: “I’m sorry. I can’t find that, but I did find …”

Siri went on to list a bunch of doctors and dentists named Peterson.

Husband, into phone: “Orale tu putisima –“

Siri: “I’m sorry. I don’t understand –“

Me: [taking phone from Husband] “Let me try. Maybe Siri doesn’t understand your accent. (Into phone) Siri, where is the Petersen Events Center?”

Siri: “I’m sorry. I cant find that, but I did find …”

Me: “Oh, forget it. “

I pulled out my HTC Evo 4G LTE and pressed the navigation icon.

Me, into phone: “Petersen Events Center.”

Evo: “Navigating to the Petersen Events Center.”

Me, to husband: “Bam.”

Husband: “Orale tu putisima –“

Me: “Say focus for me.”

The moral of this story is this, John Malkovich: Siri is pretty much useless.

Also, regarding Saltimbanco. It is exactly what you expect from a Cirque show:

1. The sudden feeling that you’re stuck in an Edward Scissorhands dream or a Tim Burton dream or a Tim Burton-directed Edward Scissorhands dream. So much weird stuff that doesn’t make any sense ever, but it doesn’t need to because … ART.

2. At least five spots in the show where you will sit with your jaw hanging open, unbelieving the very things you are seeing. The juggler? WHAT!?

3. At least two spots where the clowns, in this case the best mime in the world, have you in tears with laughter.

4. At least one act that starts out and for the first minute you’re like, “That’s IT?!” but then two minutes later you’re sitting there stunned with your mouth agape unbelieving the very things you are seeing.

Check the show out if you can as it’s only here through the weekend.

If you go, tell the Asian girl that balanced on her chin that I said, “WHAT?!”


  1. Julia
    October 19, 2012 5:18 pm

    I can completely attest to the uselessness of Siri. She doesn’t understand anything except the most basic command, and now with Google Maps no longer downloaded on the new OS, it’s a big load of crap. I will note that Siri does understand swear words and doesn’t appreciate you trying to search for porn.

  2. Butcher's Dog
    October 19, 2012 5:59 pm

    I have long maintained, and still do, that pound for pound the Cirque performers are the best athletes on the planet. Take into account balance, physical strength, flexibility and just about any other athletic function you can name and they have it in spades. For pure pagentry and spectacle, you’d be hard pressed to best them anywhere.

  3. Saul Markowitz
    October 19, 2012 7:33 pm

    So glad you enjoyed Cirque. The performers are so incredible! After watching a Cirque show I realize how badly I need to go to the gym!

  4. Roxy
    October 19, 2012 8:54 pm

    I love Siri and it worked great before the new iOS 6 update. The maps is the problem!

  5. bucdaddy
    October 20, 2012 1:25 am

    Why can’t it just be the Peterson Center? It’s an arena, right? So what ELSE would they hold there? No shit, that’s what arenas are FOR, man. You don’t have to put “Events” in the bleeping name;

    • bucdaddy
      October 20, 2012 1:29 am

      Suggested other names for Pittsburgh places:

      Heinz Football Events Field

      PNC Baseball Events Park

      Consol Hockey Events Center

      Heinz Symphony ‘n At Events Hall

      August Wilson Play Events Theater

      Hollywood Movie Events Cinemas

      PPG Events Place

      Primatni Bros. Sandwich Events

      • Butcher's Dog
        October 20, 2012 1:22 pm

        Probably should be Consol Hockey and Concert Events Center, but point is well taken.

  6. Johnaz6312
    October 20, 2012 11:57 am

    See The Beatles “LOVE” show in Vegas. It will blow you away. Well worth the money spent!

  7. Alli
    October 21, 2012 7:54 pm

    FWIW, I just asked Siri for, “directions to Petersen Events Center” and it worked fine…

  8. PBK
    October 22, 2012 3:44 am

    We luckily had front row seats…the show was great, missed them dangling from the silks in the tent though. What did you say in your head when the strong men came out near the end? My inner monologue said here comes Deter and Brock…damn they were good. The juggler with the blue beard and eyes was cool..especially since he messed up a few times. Also, thank goodness for the safety wire when they missed on the swing to the double high catch the first time. That mime/clown was the only one I did not want to hit with a rock…he cracked me up.

    And unrelated…we were at the soft opening of Cinco the other night too…good stuff! Not as good as a place in Market Square of course.