Soon after the November election, stories began circulating about Nancy Pelosi’s “mother of five” voice, which she uses to great effect with staff members and colleagues. Forged during the years she spent at home with her five children, Pelosi’s voice of authority helped make the Californian speaker of the House, the first woman to reach within two rungs of the presidency. Aside from the fact that she has to hike about a mile to get to the women’s restroom, and that her wardrobe is sometimes considered as newsworthy as her politics—I’d call that progress.I don’t know Pelosi, but I know that voice. I’ve used it often, though my “mama-means-business” voice rarely floats beyond the grimy walls of my toy-strewn house, and no one born before 2001 or taller than about three feet pays attention. Pelosi’s other-than-mother career began only after her youngest was a senior in high school.