Modern Bedtime Stories: Good Night Gadgets Everywhere
Northampton, Mass. resident David Milgrim, writing under the pseudonym Ann Droyd (take that, Apple), turns digital gadgets into rhyming devices in this new version. A “fed-up old women who was trying to sleep” must contend with such sounds as a “Blackberry ringing with Eminem singing and a new Facebook friend and texts with no end.”
The familiar listing of items to say “Good night” to includes Nooks and digital books, but—spoiler alert!—a familiar print book remains in the scene after all the gadgets have been turned off for the night.
It’s a fun read—and a good reminder that depsite the benefit of “power lights that guide us to pee in the darkness of night,” it’s a good idea to turn off all screens if you’re serious about getting a good night’s rest—or at least making sure your kids do. Watch a narration below.
Plus: Stepping back further in a child’s life—to say, before birth—Allen Salkin of The New York Times writes about another modern take on an old practice: selecting baby names.
In our still-budding digital world, where public and private spheres cross-pollinate in unpredictable ways, perhaps it’s not surprising that soon-to-be parents now routinely turn to Google to vet baby names. A quick search can help ensure that a child is not saddled with the name of a serial killer, pornography star or sex offender.
But what’s new is the level of complexity that Google and other search engines have brought to the name game. Some parents want names that are unique so their child will rise to the top of future search results. Others want names that are uncommon enough to bestow uniqueness, but not so exotic that they would be considered weird on the playground. A rare few want their child’s name to get lost in a virtual crowd.
What if parents can’t decide? Don’t worry; there’s an app for that. Hold an iPhone with Kick to Pick to the soon-to-be mother’s belly and see which name prompts a kick from within. Then purchase “Goodnight iPad.” You’re going to need it.
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