Monday, October 22, 2007

Boys of October flumaxed by Flomax, Play Station

More troubling and strange (but less embarrassing) than all the flubbed pop-up flies in game seven of the American League Playoff Series, were the ads.

I don’t watch much TV, but the last game between the Cleveland Indians and the Boston Red Sox reeled me in — at least until Boston ran off with it.

Another enticement was the new HD TV we got on Saturday. We finally retired the 17-year-old pre-digital, low-definition boulder hulking in our sitting room.

If the new 32-incher isn’t exactly a revelation, at least I now know the score — literally. I can actually make out the little numbers along the top of the screen. Talk about high definition.

So what was it about the ads that perplexed me?

Think: Flomax and Play Station. (How far we’ve come from Budweiser and Gillette!)

Consider what the two products have in common.

Like audience.

Hmmmm. Gamers who have trouble peeing? Unlikely, unless they are even more addicted than I imagined.

There’s no question that the generation that cut its teeth on Gameboys is getting on. But are they so far along that they have — and here I quote from the Flomax web page — “difficulty urinating (hesitation, dribbling, weak stream, and incomplete bladder emptying), painful urination, and urinary frequency and urgency”?

Just out of curiosity I Googled “Prostate” (the main culprit here, particularly an enlarged one) and “video games” and found only a remote, but curious, connection.

(Did someone say, “Get a life.” Bear with me. Trenchant point ahead!)

Turns out that surgeons who do laparoscopic surgery do better after playing video games. (See, I told you so.)

Or to quote:
“Hand–eye coordination: video games and laparoscopic surgery
A new study has demonstrated that some of the skills needed to perform laparoscopic surgery are similar to those used when playing video games.”

Score one for video games. (Personal historic note: My dad was a urologist and did his share of laparoscopic surgery. He was damned good at it. That said, the closest he came to playing video games was shooting pool, which he did badly. As a kid of 10, I routinely cleaned his clock.)

Moving right along….

Turns out that cancers, including prostate cancer, are less common among males older than 65 when they exercise regularly (that is to say they are NOT playing sedentary video games...and yes I realize that some games now involve physical exercise, but most don’t.)

Again, to quote: “The results showed that men older than 65 years of age who engaged in three hours or more of vigorous physical activity a week had a marked reduction—of nearly 70 percent—in their risk of developing high-grade, advanced or fatal prostate cancer.”

Score one against video games. Okay, okay, score one for exercise.

But the study found no correlation between exercise and prostate cancer among the young. The young rarely get prostate cancer in any case. Count that as a draw.

Fascinating, huh?


Well, let’s see what the World Series brings.

I don’t know about the Flomax and Play Station ads, but I’d like to see better communication between infielders and outfielders on pop-ups. Less hesitation and dribbling.

I’m not sure what can be done for weak streams, but a little Flomax might help.

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9:57 PM  

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