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Rage against the surveillance state
She knows if you've been sleeping, she knows if you've lost a tooth
Our older son lost his second tooth this morning. This is the second time I've picked him up from school that he proudly presented me with a tiny plastic treasure box containing his latest denticle. I don't know how much his teacher makes, but it's not enough. I can't imagine trying to teach kids how to read and do math with their teeth just falling out all over the place.
Now that he's been through the Tooth Fairy routine once, he knows the drill. That also means he's familiar enough with the process to start asking questions. If there's one thing he's good at, it's questions.
"How does the Tooth Fairy know when it falls out?"
"Does she look under my pillow every night?"
"Is she in my room?"
"Is she invisible?"
"Is she watching me right now?"
"Does she know what I'm thinking?"
A story designed to alleviate the fear of losing baby teeth quickly morphed into something to fear itself. Who wants some creepy invisible fairy looking under your pillow each night while you sleep? The thought of Tinkerbell surveilling what is or is not in your mouth at any given moment is a bit unnerving.
As I dodged his increasingly concerned line of questioning, my son said, "Maybe the Tooth Fairy just listens from your phone; then she can keep track of everything."
Out of the mouths of babes.
My son's concerns about privacy violations from some mythical tooth-collecting sprite were perfectly explained with her access to the device I pay for to violate my privacy daily. It made me think, if the Tooth Fairy actually had access to my electronics, what would she know about us? Probably everything.
If the Tooth Fairy had nefarious intentions and didn't just want to collect children's teeth in exchange for a dollar (as if that doesn't sound nefarious enough already), she could do some serious damage.
My son and I spent the drive home discussing ways to combat the Tooth Fairy knowing too much. He declared that putting down the phone more often and spending more time outside was the best solution - an idea I fully endorsed.
We came home and played outside with the animals and watered the plants. At the same time, my Tooth Fairy listening device (the phone) stayed inside on the counter. The times I would have been tempted to do a quick scroll to see what I was missing, it wasn't there, but neither was the distraction.
As we all head to bed tonight, I wonder if my son will decide to put his tooth under his pillow or just leave it in the kitchen on the counter where the phone sat this afternoon. I'm sure the Tooth Fairy will leave him a dollar wherever he puts it - and maybe he'd sleep better with a break from the surveillance.