Bad Cord on Nook

I love my Nook. I have had it for about 2 years now. It started as something to play angry birds on, as I had a hard time reading books on it. Now, however, it is a great way to read most books.

My issue with it is the choice of a non-standard design for the USB power cord. I am not sure exactly what it is about the cord (most likely pin configuration), but you cannot use a standard micro-usb to charge a Nook. I had someone argue with me at Best Buy about this, as they have their demo Nooks hooked up to standard USB cords until showed them the Nook was being powered but the battery was not being charged. The Nook cords cost $10 and up, while a standard USB cord can be found for a couple of dollars.

I am not sure why Nook went with a nonstandard USB configuration. I assume it was to put a light on the Nook end? But that could easily be accomplished with a standard cord and a bit of ingenuity.

This, in and of itself, is not a problem. The problem is the Nook cord is so damned cheap. We now have two Nooks in the house and both have suffered the same issue. The cord simply falls apart. When it happened to my daughter’s cord, I assumed she was being a bit too hard on it. I, on the other hand, have been extremely careful in packing my cord. Mine still fell apart a few months after I initially bought it. I super glued it together, but it still fell apart this week again.

Nook Cord

Since my daughter’s cord was completely destroyed, I am going to take the little Nook end off and reglue this one. But, in the future, I will be more likely to go with a Kindle Fire than re-up with Nook, as this really irritates me.

Peace and Grace,

Twitter: @gbworld

September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Five years ago this week, my life changed forever. It started with a small lump between my daughter Miranda’s ribs. It compounded when she was admitted to the hospital on September 1. It spun out of control when she was diagnosed with cancer on September 6.

It is fitting Miranda would be admitted to Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital on September 1, the first day of National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. It is coincidental she spent the entire month of September in the hospital, fighting Ewing’s Sarcoma, a very rare form of children’s cancer. At the time neither my wife nor I had any idea there was a National Childhood Cancer Awareness month. Today, I am convinced the awareness is not much better with the American public. Running a Google news search this morning, I found more links for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which occurs in October, than Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

It does not surprise me the awareness is low, as childhood cancer affects less than 1/3rd of 1% of the children in America. Compared to the 250,000 women who will get breast cancer this year, it is a very small number. Yet, each year 13,500 families will have their lives changed forever and 2,700 will bury their children, victims of either cancer or the antiquated treatments.

Up until two years ago, there had been no new treatment specifically targeting childhood cancers in over 3 decades. Even today, the new options are few and far between. Most children, like Miranda, are subjected to chemotherapy regiments formed in the 60s or 70s – only the specific mix, dosage and treatment schedules have changed. Many of the chemotherapy treatments would kill a grown adult. It is fortunate children’s bodies rebound better.

Cancer has a serious downside. Without cancer, I wouldn’t have seen the devastation when a parent loses their child. Without cancer, I would have never had to close the hospital door so Miranda didn’t see R. J. Brisland’s lifeless body wheeled down the hallway of the pod. Without cancer, I may have lived my life without witnessing the funeral of a child, and certainly never would have witnessed the number I have.

But cancer also has it upside. Without cancer, I would have never witnessed the wonder of my wife founding the 46 mommas, a group raising money through St. Baldrick’s, an organization that is on track to beat the United States government this year in grant money for childhood cancer research. Without cancer, I would have never been able to grant a child’s one heartfelt wish through Make-A-Wish. Without cancer, I would never have the pleasure of helping other families through the pain of cancer in their own children. And without cancer, I would not have had the chance to see the hope each cancer parent holds that one day we will find a cure.

Peace and Grace,

Twitter: @gbworld