If You Thought Those 'A Simple Touch,' Cialis Ads Were Unsettling ...

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... then you should see what the Government of Singapore has in store. (And, about the Cialis ads: Just about the only reason I am glad my kids are grown and gone is that they're not around to watch those ads aimed at their parents' generation, while sitting there on the couch next to their parents. Yuh-ucch!)

Back to Singapore. For years it has been worried about flaccid birth rates among its people, often with an edge of eugenics thinking. So in partnership with Mentos, it's trying a more direct and with-it approach. I don't know what you'll be doing on the night of August 9, but if you're in Singapore  -- well, see for yourself. Seriously, check this out.



Mentos.pngAbout the only thing that needs explaining is when, around time 2:18, the video talks about "putting a bao in the oven," a bao is like a little bundle or dumpling or bun. And before that, in the line: "I know you want it / so does the SDU," here is what they're talking about. But even if you didn't know that you'd get the idea. There's a little more explanation to the right, which says a lot about Singapore in just a few lines.

The Singapore government has often been criticized for being too Gradgrind-like and strait-laced. So, no joke, congrats to whoever broke the stereotype by doing this. And ... ummm, Happy National Day / Night!

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James Fallows is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Carter's chief speechwriter. His latest book is China Airborne. More

James Fallows is based in Washington as a national correspondent for The Atlantic. He has worked for the magazine for nearly 30 years and in that time has also lived in Seattle, Berkeley, Austin, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, and Beijing. He was raised in Redlands, California, received his undergraduate degree in American history and literature from Harvard, and received a graduate degree in economics from Oxford as a Rhodes scholar. In addition to working for The Atlantic, he has spent two years as chief White House speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, two years as the editor of US News & World Report, and six months as a program designer at Microsoft. He is an instrument-rated private pilot. He is also now the chair in U.S. media at the U.S. Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, in Australia.

Fallows has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award five times and has won once; he has also won the American Book Award for nonfiction and a N.Y. Emmy award for the documentary series Doing Business in China. He was the founding chairman of the New America Foundation. His recent books Blind Into Baghdad (2006) and Postcards From Tomorrow Square (2009) are based on his writings for The Atlantic. His latest book is China Airborne. He is married to Deborah Fallows, author of the recent book Dreaming in Chinese. They have two married sons.

Fallows welcomes and frequently quotes from reader mail sent via the "Email" button below. Unless you specify otherwise, we consider any incoming mail available for possible quotation -- but not with the sender's real name unless you explicitly state that it may be used. If you are wondering why Fallows does not use a "Comments" field below his posts, please see previous explanations here and here.
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