These toys, on the floor in the kids area of Blue Marble in Brooklyn, have seen their better days. I think that’s part of what makes them so awesome.
i can’t remember the last time i saw someone use a pay phone. i definitely don’t recall seeing a new one anytime in the last ten years.
Will is hilarious now that he’s so mobile. He waves hello and goodbye to everything, though mostly to his brother, buses, trains, and cars. And he’s pretty stylin’ in his track suit.
the new york times ran an article today titled, simply enough, “caesarian births are at an all-time high in the u.s.” in it, we find out that 32% of births in the u.s. are now done via caesarian section. i’m not surprised at all.
before henry was born in 2005 (cripes! i’m so old…), every dad/partner/friend in our childbirth class — which i wasn’t a very big fan of, as i thought it was WAY too impractical and touchy-feely, not to mention the ridiculously awful natural-birth movies we had to watch — was given a card that had several questions that we were supposed to ask a doctor once the conversation veered towards a c-section. these started out with “is this procedure medically necessary?” and ended up with something like “what the hell happened to our birth plan!?” sounded perfect in class.
fast-forward about a month from that card and 14 hours into a labor that wasn’t progressing. the doctor — not alison’s doctor, but another in the practice who was notorious for performing c-sections — comes in and states that it will be a caesarian birth. “is this procedure medically necessary?” i asked, and the doctor just looked at me and said something like “it’s been 14 hours without significant progress and we can either agree to do this now or i can come back in two hours and we can agree to do it then.” we at least made her come back in two hours, but the deal was kind of done then. and it was pretty terrible — alison was flopping around like a fish out of water and so cold from the anesthesia, and it was a terrible feeling to not be able to help at all.
What we’re worried about is, the Caesarean section rate is going up, but we’re not improving the health of babies being delivered or of moms.
this is the biggest problem I have with the c-section thing. aside from cases where there is immediate danger to the baby or mother, what’s the rush to the operating room? it really doesn’t feel like it’s NOT because doctors want to stay on a schedule, get more deliveries out of the way, and impose a sense of order on the day’s docket. and then once you’ve had one caesarian birth you’re probably going to have another one.
Risks to the mother increase with each subsequent Caesarean, because the surgery raises the odds that the uterus will rupture in the next pregnancy, an event that can be life-threatening for both the mother and the baby. Caesareans also increase the risk of dangerous abnormalities in the placenta during later pregnancies, which can cause hemorrhaging and lead to a hysterectomy. Repeated Caesareans can make it risky or even impossible to have a large family.
there’s no amount of ANYTHING that i can do to convince alison that we should have a third kid. though even if we did want another, would it be worth the risk? this is just lunacy — i’m no expert, just a two-time-onlooker-with-involvement, but we aren’t doing anything that makes sure that c-sections are only done when medically necessary. we’re putting mothers at risk for the sake of babies that might look better when they’re first born or because we need to keep things on schedule.
it doesn’t always work out like it did in knocked up.
i was a little late to the chatroulette piano improv thing, but i was really convinced that merton was actually ben folds.
turns out that he wasn’t, but ben folds was a fan, too. here he is during a show in charlotte, NC.
now i just need to find tickets to see him at town hall next month…
we tried a new crock pot recipe today, courtesy of martha stewart: slow-cooked tex-mex chicken and beans (http://www.marthastewart.com/recipe/slow-cooked-tex-mex-chicken-and-beans). while we were off playing in the park, the slow cooker was hard at work cooking up a delicious dinner.
it was delicious, though we improvised when we couldn’t find the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. the kids probably couldn’t have handled the heat anyway, so it all worked out. our finished product didn’t look any different than martha’s either, which is always a good thing.
For a while now, I’ve been really stuck on Twitter as my main way of communicating with others — email has turned work-only, my blog had been all but abandoned, and Facebook is a nice way for me to passively check in on my friends. For some reason, though, I had fallen into a trap of communicating in 140 character chunks almost exclusively. And I know that’s ridiculous, not just because of the character limit but also because not everyone tweets.
When Google Buzz was launched, I thought it would be a great thing to link it to Twitter. A way that I could really check on Twitter without needing some clunky third-party widget in Gmail? Sign me up. The problem, though, is that I think it served only to splinter the discussions around a certain posting. While Buzz pulls tweets and allows for comments on them, it does so in a completely separate way from anything ongoing in Twitter. The upside is that you got more than 140 characters (yay!) but also a completely separate running commentary to engage in (boo!).
I didn’t really want to write a blog post about blogging, but I’ve been pretty busy pushing Posterous over our WordPress install for some trips that have gone to Kenya and Japan over spring break — I missed the Geneva trip, or I would have tried to push it on them, too. On a very basic level, I like how easy it is to post to a Posterous blog by sending a simple email and attaching or linking to images or movies. I like the autoposting capabilities that are built-in, even though I’m having a spot of trouble getting one of the blogs to autopost to a WordPress-powered site I’m maintaining.
But what impresses me most of all is the community aspect of Posterous. Take some easy-to-use blogging, a subscription model that works, and commenting that can be tied to a central account and I think there’s the real possibility of a tool that can really be used to teach and model online participation — not just following blogs but expanded self-publishing options and the ability to engage in lengthier discussions. One of the things that we’ve struggled with in the tenth grade social media course that we’ve been teaching is that the kids pretty quickly tired of keeping track of the different sites we were pointing them to, even if they were all linked to from a central location. Posterous could help flip that on its head — instead of being the blogging platform, it could become the hub of online conversations in a classroom connected to the outside world.
It might be the perfect cure for continuing the discussion way past 140 characters.
In what may be seen a a blow to laptops in classrooms, at least by people who read something in a newspaper and think, "See! There's the proof! End of discussion…," the Washington Post published an article titled "Wide Web of diversions get laptops evicted from lecture halls." Somehow, in the discussion of what is appropriate for law school students to be doing during their lessons, the article manages to bring up digital natives, ubiquitous computing, and World of Warcraft.