I am so glad that my we got my youngest son a smartphone so he could download helpful apps that improve his life and enhance his academic journey.
I’d love to tell you that he is using the iTunes U app to watch advanced level philosophy or math videos from Ivy League professors. I’d love to tell you that he is reading the free classic novels he can download or that he is using the Dictionary app to bolster his vocabulary. I’d love to tell you that he is downloading magazines like Newsweek or Fast Company or The Atlantic on his Newsstand app and is perusing them whenever he has free time.
But I would be lying to you. Because that is not what my son does on his iPhone.
Instead, he documents his bodily functions.
I found this out the other day when we were in the car running errands. We pulled up to the grocery store and my son whipped out his phone and, after a few clicks, cheerily said, “Bomb’s away!”
“What are you doing?” I asked.
“I’m using my new app,” he said. “It’s called Places I’ve Pooped. Whenever you poop somewhere new, you hit the Bomb’s Away button and it flags that place on a map. I’ve already pooped here.”
“Are you kidding me?”
“No! Check out all the places I’ve pooped,” he said.
He showed me the screen. Little pushpins dotted the map. Sure enough, he’s pooped in A LOT of places. I suppose I should be grateful knowing that my son has a very healthy digestive system.
“Isn’t it awesome?” he asked.
I tried to think about that. Is it awesome? If so, why? Perhaps it would be if there were any legitimate medical use for the app, maybe as motivation for sufferers of constipation?
Then I started thinking about broader issues of gender and bodily functions: What is it about boys (and men) and their bodily functions? Why do they think it’s cool to discuss and even broadcast them with anyone and everyone? And who in the world came up with an app called Places I’ve Pooped?
Not surprisingly, the creator is a young male software developer in Seattle named Mike Judge. Here’s how he describes himself on Twitter (@MikeLovesRobots): Seattle-based software engineer and indie game developer, author of Piggyback Dungeon Ryder, BlockHeroes and the highly reviewed Places I’ve Pooped.
Wait, Places I’ve Pooped is highly reviewed?
I went to the app itself to see what customers see in it. Here’s how Mike markets it on the App Store: Places I’ve Pooped is a little gem that helps you track all the places you’ve pooped in the world. Expand your territory, mark everywhere you’ve visited – bombs away!
In the comment section of the App Store, one person complained that the share to Facebook button wasn’t working. Really? You want to share where you’ve pooped with your friends on Facebook?
Perhaps this revelation explains why I had a very hard time finding a Father’s Day card that didn’t refer to 1) Farting or 2) Burping or 3) Sitting on the toilet. Clearly, greeting card companies have done their research.
I’m not sure I will ever understand guys and their fascination with discussing and documenting their pooping – or any other bodily functions.
All I know is that I’m pretty certain there will never be an app called Places I’ve Gotten My Period.
P.S. In case you’re wondering if I am embarrassing my son by writing this post, fear not. He gives the post an enthusiastic thumbs up and will be happy to show you his ever-expanding map of places he’s pooped if you so desire.