Best of 2008 Invention

Centurions have to be astounded by all the inventions they have witnessed during their lifetimes. When they were born there were no electric washers, dryers, dishwashers, air conditioners, televisions or microwaves. A telephone had a live person who asked for the name of the party you wanted to speak to as there were no dials on the telephone yet. In spite of all the advancement in the technological fields, the most amazing invention for 2008 has to be the wet strip indicators on diapers.

In the early Twentieth Century cloth diapers were a convenience for mothers. Babies were wrapped up like a package and pinned to hold the diaper in place. Eventually plastic cover pants were invented which attempted to hold the moisture but leakage could never be guaranteed. Then diapers with extra thickness in one third of the cloth, intended to be folded in the appropriate way depending on whether the baby was male or female, was a further effort to contain liquid. That diaper required two safety pins for closure.

During the 1960’s paper diapers were the big deal. Parents were delighted that they no longer had to launder and bleach diapers. The unpleasantness of the highly offensive odor and handling of the contaminated cotton diapers had come to an end. Diaper changers could simply remove and discard the paper diaper. This was a revelation that changed diapering forever.

Some parents allow their infants and toddlers to walk around naked as they attempt to potty-train the child. It is their belief that since a child does not enjoy being wet, they will learn quickly to utilize the potty chair for its intended use. Of course this technique requires parents and sitters to be constantly on guard for hints or signs of impending discharge. One tends to wonder who is being trained.

Throughout the generations, diaper changers needed to “check” to see if the diaper was wet or “loaded.” The check was accomplished by peeking into the diaper, squishing the front of it for fullness or perhaps untabbing it to get a definite view of wetness or dryness. If, however, it was loaded, the stench was adequate notification.

Then in 2008 appeared the diaper with the wet strip. Imagine that. By simply looking at the strip one knows whether or not to change the diaper. Diaper changers no longer need to disrupt the baby’s sleep, interrupt their play or mealtime, or waste a diaper that was prematurely untabbed.

This writer cannot begin to imagine what the next invention could be concerning baby wastes but certainly the wet strip can make for dryer and happier babies, and perhaps centurions, too.