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Do Not Give This To Your Children (Give This To Your Children)

14 Mar

March 14, 2017

Watching TV is like watching all the worst in life. No, I haven’t been watching American Chopper reruns, I’m talking about commercials. In particular, I’m talking about commercials for medicine. They are so full of disclaimers and legal jargon that I’m not sure if I should ask my doctor or lawyer if I should take something. But if I’m diagnosing myself based on symptoms recited by a talking pink pill, I may have other problems besides an upset stomach. 

I was watching TV when an ad for Linzess came on. As far as made up medicine names go, Linzess is better than Prevnar 13, which they claim is a pneumonia medication but I think is really a planet where Captain Kirk fought the Klingons. 

Linzess is medicine for constipation and belly pain. Yes, it is for “belly” pain and not “stomach” pain. Hey, why use a medical term in a medicine commercial? Check it out here, from the official Linzess website, complete with a cute girl with a backed up dumper:

As I was listening to the commercial I heard a couple of caveats, which I highlighted above.

  • Do not give LINZESS to children who are less than 6 years of age. It may harm them.
  • You should not give LINZESS to children 6 years to less than 18 years of age. It may harm them.

What’s the difference?
Under no circumstances should you give this to kids under 6. Nope, not at all. Don’t do it.
You shouldn’t give it to kids between 6 and 18, but maybe, if you want to, nudge nudge wink wink. We won’t tell.

Why not just say “Do not give Linzess to children who are under eighteen”? Is it OK to take a chance with a 14 year old? It does sort of hint that you can give it to an older kid. After all, you should not buy off-brand frozen fish from the dollar store but people do it all the time. So why not take a shot with your kid’s health?

What is the difference between “do not give” and “you should not give”? 
The question is Imponderable.

This has been Imponderable #134

 

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Recorded History

30 Aug

August 30, 2016

I grew up in the days before VCR’s were common. And that really dates me since a lot of my younger readers who have TiVo or any kind of digital recorders may never have had a VCR. But at one point it just wasn’t common to have any kind of home television recording device. They existed in the 70’s but they weren’t cheap or in every home.

As a kid, I had a black + white TV in my bedroom, and that dates me too. Even then B+W TV’s were on the way out and color sets were soon all you’d find. It was an old set.

This was around 1979 or so. I was young and I was just becoming a Star Trek fan. (How did that happen? Read here.) Problem was, the show aired on WPIX channel 11 late at night. I’m not sure, but it aired at 11:00 or even later, and for a kid like me, that was past my bedtime. Even though there was a  TV right near my bed, I knew Mom or Dad would see the light under my door or hear the sound so watching the show wasn’t an option. But I came up with a work around.

Dad had a portable cassette recorder and I put it next to the TV speaker, turned down the sound, and adjusted the picture so the screen was all black. That way I recorded the Trek audio and eventually I had three or four shows in my meager collection, audio only. I’d listen to them late at night.

See how old it is? It has a leather case and a carry strap!

See how old it is? It has a leather case and a carry strap!

Flash forward to today. DVD, Netflix, Hulu, and more. If you want to see (let alone hear) an episode of Star Trek it is at your fingertips. And the other night I put on Netflix and found a particular episode of Star Trek, one I haven’t seen in a few years, at least.

Kirk, Spock and Co. beam down to a planet where Spock gets infected by alien spores and his emotions are released. He falls in love and refuses to leave the planet. It’s not a bad episode but certainly not one of the best. Middle of the road, I’d say. It’s memorable for Spock falling in love but also for McCoy speaking in a slow Southern drawl.

1x25_This_Side_of_Paradise_title_card

But it is very special to me since it was one of the shows I taped on that old recorder of Dad’s. Both the recorder and the tape are long, long gone. So just for the heck of it, to relive some of my youth, late at night I after I got into bed the other night I took out my tablet and played This Side of Paradise. Without the picture. Just the audio. The same way I listened to this episode back in the late 70’s.

It isn’t a great line, and not a memorable piece of dialogue, but I would be lying if I didn’t get a thrill hearing the head of the planet’s lost colony introduce himself to Jim Kirk.

this side of paradise new caption

I have a clear and distinct memory of lying in my childhood bed in my family’s old apartment listening to that scene. And for the next 50 minutes or so, while I may have been lying in my 2016 bed, I was also lying in my 1979 bed, in my 1979 home, and I felt every bit the kid I was then.

I suppose there’s a point here about technology, or childhood, or whatever you may have read into this. For me, the only point is that it’s a damn shame I had to grow up.

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bmj2k enterprise

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