Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

September 21, 2012

More Popinators, less news radio

By Janet Jacobs
Corsicana Daily Sun

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I know there are people out there who think that science has gone too far, that it is too confusing and overwhelming, but I say it’s just arriving. And now, with the Popinator, we’re starting to see the real potential of the future.

This thing is a box about the size of a toaster that flings popcorn into your mouth, one kernel at a time whenever you say the word “pop.” The Popinator is not available on shelves yet, but I think it’s just a matter of time.

The Popinator is a project at Popcorn Indiana, a company that makes (you guessed it) bagged popcorn. It is a voice-activated popcorn launcher that has a microphone inside it that determines where your mouth is when you say the word, and flings the popcorn at the source of the sound.

The engineer who came up with it explains in a video posted on “Foodbeast Food News” that each piece of popcorn is different, so people may have to wiggle their heads a little to catch it, but that’s the fun.

The short video shows people in their cubicles at the popcorn company occasionally saying the word “pop” and getting rewarded with a piece of flying food, like seals at Sea World. Sure, there might be some danger of getting a piece of popcorn in an eye. Salt in the eyeball can be painful, or potentially choking, but other than that it looks pretty fun.

Inevitably, someone is going to pipe up with the refrain of “what about the children?” in a horrified voice, because for some reason if something could potentially be misused by kids then the rest of society shouldn’t be able to have it either. Still, by the time the Popinator is ready for prime time maybe someone will have come up with a solution.

On a different subject, I’ve been avoiding news radio recently in favor of daydreaming, but the other day I turned it on and listened to one solid day of it, then turned it off again. I have two college degrees in political science and I can barely stand to listen to all the cat fighting in this political season. And it’s only September. Woe unto us.

I think I liked the primary season better, when we got interesting stuff in the mail and politicians tried to look dignified. Now that we’re at the finish line however, everyone’s acting like fools.

Here’s my advice to politicians and those of us who are subject to their idiocy: Don’t take it too seriously.

I like to think back to the election of 1980 when Reagan came in and everyone thought we’d be in a nuclear war within an hour after the inauguration, just like people thought we were going to be communist a month after Obama took office. But both the doomsayers were wrong. We are the country that survived Warren G. Harding. Have courage. It’ll all be fine. We just have to avoid news radio for a few more weeks.


Janet Jacobs is City Editor of the Corsicana Daily Sun. Her column appears on Saturdays. She may be reached via email at Want to “soundoff” to this column? Email: