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OCTOBER 17, 2007 

Faster, faster... better?

Screen shot of quick-peel a potato videoI feel guilty about liking the videos on the Sprint Waitless site, I really do. They're based on the premise that doing things quicker is better, which we all know isn't true. Fast-food anyone?

The tagline "Fast-forward through the boring parts of life" rubs me the wrong way, especially when I think of the faces of some of my students during class. Do I really want to encourage them to "fast-forward?"

But these short videos are so darn clever and well-made that I've watched every one of them, from how to make sorbet to quick-peeling a banana (and today's latest addition, a potato).

Diagram of popping the cap off a bottleAs "instructional" videos they are terrific. Written with a sense of humor, they combine an actual demo of the technique with graphic illustrations (arrows, etc.), music and a small amount of text. They are also, as you might imagine, short, typically well under a minute.

The tips illustrated in many of these Sprintcuts come in handy primarily in the kitchen—peeling an egg, a banana, a potato, opening a bottle, etc.

But one that I plan to try the first chance I get deals with a more serious problem—calming a crying baby. The "instant baby soothe" involves holding the baby near a faucet and turning the water on. It's explained as reminding the baby of happier times in the womb. Hmm... we'll have to see about that one.

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