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my office building is next to a nursery. when the kiddos are out on recess, i hear everything that goes on. lots of activity, lots of energetic screaming. Sometimes it involves several of them playing a bunch of percussion instruments chaotically. It's pretty wonderful.

Something new that's happened this year is that at some point in the middle of recess, they make water available to the kids, and this gets announced by a woman who calls out "coooold waaaater!" in a sing-song voice. usually she repeats herself once, sometimes twice. Every time she does it, the words come out with practically the same inflection, the same pitch, and the same duration.

and there's something subtly clever about that - on a basic level, it creates an expectation and ritual for the kids so that even if they're far enough away in playground or are otherwise occupied to not process the actual words, they still process the sound in a way that makes the intent clear. But on a more subliminal level, that expectation and ritual i think creates an almost pavlovian sort of response out of the kids - upon hearing that singsong voice, it could make them realize "oh yeah, i'm thirsty," or, even better, make them think, "oh yeah, i should be thirsty."

i'm really tempted to try to grab a recording of it every day for a period of, i dunno, 200 days or something, and then see if i can turn it into a piece of music. I don't know if that will actually be worth the effort for the return, but it's a neat thought.

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