The Sound Sitter

The Sound Sitter

OK – I have to say I think this new device from Honda is a very strange item.

Yes, young children often cry. They are tired, sad, scared, hungry, tired, hungry, tired. And they cry. What do they want?  Usually some hugging, some food, sleep, comforting.

Pretty natural. And parents respond with hugs, holding, food, humming, swaying, rocking, etc.

Honda has recently come up with a new toy as a way to soothe your upset baby.  This toy is a soft toy car that emits the sound of a car engine.  A Honda car engine.  Apparently their research found that young children were soothed by the sound of a car engine.  Who knew? (This is weird/wrong in so many ways: it is blunt advertising, it plays on parents’ anxiety about not being able to care for their babies, it promotes the idea of fossil fuel consumption as a fixture in our lives, etc., etc.)

sound sitter

Maybe this idea fits well with current Japanese culture?  I don’t know. (But Japan is the country that developed robotic  talking seals as therapeutic toys for seniors, as a replacement for family connections. See video here. )

See what you think of Honda`s new creation.

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Hi –  I just found this now.   Couldn’t pass it up!  Perhaps you know the feelings expressed by this parent.

Have a great holiday season!!! Perhaps a fairly quiet one to boot!

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wood frog

No, this post is not about how noisy frogs can be. (Which they can be!)

No, this is to connect you with a short article describing a study that looked at how wood frogs adapt to noise near their breeding ponds.  Yes, they adapt.  The wonders of nature!

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Noise and Restaurants


noisy resto1

Just the other day I was talking to my wife about where in town we could eat in a quiet setting.  And we came up with only two possibles – and neither ranked as really quiet.  This is a sad thing in a town with quite a few good restaurants. The appeal of the food pales in the face of the noise levels.

Then today I found this brief piece in a recent New Yorker issue, which is about a phone app called SoundPrint.

soundprint app

You use this app to check the decibel level in the restaurant.  Then you can post it to the SoundPrint app and let other people know about the noise level.  Apparently there is data from over 2700 restaurants and bars in NYC.  But.  More than 70% of the restaurants and more than 90% of the bars are rated as “loud” – meaning between 76 – 80 decibels, or “very loud”, which is 80 decibels or higher.

So the next time you are in NYC  (there are also lists for 8 other US cities – see the SoundPrint site) you might want to check with this app before you make reservations.

Or you might want to add a new place to the list.

Or, if you live somewhere where there is no list yet, you can approach SoundPrint to become an Ambassador!

Here’s hoping you find a lovely restaurant where you can eat in quiet, and actually hear your dinner partner(s).  Good luck!  And let us know what you find.

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A must read!

I just found this article a few minutes ago.  Here is a man after my own heart! (And not my heart, the one damaged by noise.)  Give it a read; I bet you will like it, and agree with him.

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Noise and your heart

Of course! Noise is bad for your heart too.  You thought it was just your hearing and your peace of mind that was affected. Read here to learn more. Get those ear plugs out!

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Whales and Noise

Today, I read some good news.  Given the levels of bad news these days, this is a little ray of sunshine!

The Canadian government is setting up a project to  address the impact of noise on whales.  Read about it here. Let’s wish them luck and success!

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