Q: What’s worse than your furnace and water heater both breaking on Thursday?

A: Taking a cold shower Friday night.

On Saturday my answer will change to: Seeing the bill for replacing a 25-year-old water tank with a tankless heater. Whew, we sure got some mileage out of the old one, that’s for sure.

I’m behind on mailing contest winners, and have a couple more contests to announce, and plenty of stuff waiting to be reviewed. Gah!

In the meantime, chew on this completely unrelated parenting factoid: Time-outs as a behavior control mechanism for toddlers are the result of research conducted on rats.

“In addressing the question of how to suppress or eliminate a particular behavior, like pressing a lever or pausing between two tasks, researchers working with rats and other animals developed the tactic of time out from reinforcement, which is the full and more accurate name of what most people know as the timeout. The procedure consists of a brief period in which the animal cannot receive reinforcers for the usual reward-earning behaviors, such as getting food by pressing the correct lever. From timeout in a laboratory cage came timeout in a corner of the playground, classroom, or living room.”

The article itself is long-winded and dry, but I thought I’d share that delightful little tidbit to make your day a little more pleasant.


6 Responses to “@#$%^&*!”

  1. Lucy says:

    Sounds like Alfie Kohn’s Punished by Rewards. In his other book, Unconditional Parenting, he thinks instead of time-outs, we should use time-ins. His books are interesting though almost impossible to put into practice.

    November 14th, 2009 at 11:43 am

  2. gertie says:

    Timeouts never made much sense to me. I think they really only serve to make parents feel like they have addressed the problem.

    November 14th, 2009 at 5:20 pm

  3. carrie says:

    Repeat after seeing the bill:

    endless hot water. endless hot water. endless hot water.

    We love our tankless!

    November 14th, 2009 at 10:48 pm

  4. nrbp says:

    It would have been far less dry had they included photos of the rats timed-out in the corner with pointed dunce hats on their heads.

    November 15th, 2009 at 9:09 am

  5. Jared says:

    I think I would’ve just skipped the COLD shower altogether and doubled up on deodorant and cologne. :D

    Interesting fact about the “Timeout”. Learn something every day. :D

    November 15th, 2009 at 10:01 pm

  6. Julian Devlin says:

    Hey at least you get 30% tax rebate on purchase/installation price.

    November 17th, 2009 at 8:09 am

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