WELL, THAT WAS EASY

 

B00005q3at01thumbzzz Fellow's public school began RIOT Week today (Reading Is Our Thing) which involves, among other things, turning off the TV at home for the duration of the (admittedly short four-day) week, to focus on reading. Being an earnest and obedient grade K student, Fellow has been talking up RIOT week for a while, reminding everyone it was a week for no TV. We suggested that we could make an exception for the night this week he'd have a babysitter, but he'd have none of it - there's no TV this week, period. (Fortunately, the Red Sox and Yankees played each other last week.) The message even filtered into Tiny Girl's consciousness. This morning, when she appeared in the living room on schedule at 7 am, instead of her usual greeting - "TV! TV!" - she asked us, "This is the week with no TV, right?" And indeed she was right. So we put on some music. And while we admit her choice of CD was a bit counterproductive, it's a good first step.


 

A WHOLE NEW MEANING TO 2% MILK


Your hot-button diet scare of the day: An Albert Einstein researcher has found that women who consume dairy products appear to be five times more likely to have twins as women who do not. The culprit: Bovine growth hormone, which appears naturally in milk, but is also injected into milk cows on about a third of American farms to foster growth and increase milk production. The study's results are "suggestive," not "conclusive," and we expect that the rise in delayed childbearing is also a critical fact0r, but the good doctor says that the spike in twin births can be traced to 1994, the year that - you guessed it - BGH was approved for use on US farms.

 

Our recommendation for organic-milk producers' stocks: Buy.


WE DON'T SEE NOTHING WRONG / WITH A LITTLE BUMP AND GRIND

-- with apologies to R. Kelly, and to William Safire, whose recent "On Language" column traced the derivation of the pregnant-belly euphemism of the moment, bump. Call us old-fashioned, but at FD.com HQ, we've been sticking with tummy and belly.

 

WE ALSO HAVE NO PROBLEM WITH A LITTLE BUGGY AND GRIND

 

The Wall Street Journal (article not available online) and Publishers Weekly have raved about the new book, Rumpsringa, by Tom Shachtman, which goes behind the fascinating Amish tradition in which 16-year-olds are allowed a window to go into the modern world and test the limits of freedom, from cell phones to smoking to drunk driving. The idea is that they must freely choose to  enter into life as members of the highly-restrictive church, and cannot do so without knowing what they'd be missing. What's remarkable is that at the end of rumspringa, 80% of Amish kids decide to commit to the life, a testament, perhaps, to the power of Amish parenting. (Jedediah, pick up your quill - we see a best-selling parenting book in your future.)

CHILDREN'S TELEVISION. . . AFTER DARK

We don't get DirectTV, so we don't have access to the new premium channel for toddlers, BabyFirstTV, but this review made it sound innocuous enough, until we reached this point:

. . . ''Sandman'' turns up with particular frequency on ''Rainbow Dreams,'' the channel's late-night schedule meant to lull restless viewers of all ages back to sleep.

Repeat visitors know that we have no particular beef with children watching some TV in the course of an active day, but we've come to oppose encouraging children to lull themselves back to sleep with the TV on. We do have a firm sick-kid rule: If you're vomiting, or feverish, or very very sad, in the middle of the night, of course we'll watch TV with you as you calm down. But from our own (past) experience trying to use TV to put Tiny Girl to sleep, it backfires more often than not, simply delaying (your sleep, and) the inevitable hands-on comforting restless toddlers will need until the show's over.

May 30, 2006 | Permalink | Subscribe to RSS

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