The Odd Couple

He’s black

She’s white

He’s 22

She’s 80

He’s a Democrat 

She’s a Republican 

He lives in New York 

She lives in Florida 

Image: Mashable

Image: Mashable

Q-What could these two possibly have in common? 

A-Words With Friends, a Scrabble-type game. 

Three hundred games later, Spencer Sleyon finally met his opponent Rosalind last Friday. The online game often pairs up strangers because their scores are compatible. Spencer and Rosalind sometimes chatted online during the games but they knew very little about each other.

Spencer tweeted about their relationship and eventually received 17,000 likes. Their friendship is very inspirational and promising. 

Maybe the Internet isn’t as bad as a lot of people think. More details on Spencer and Rosalind in Mashable

Know What Alec Baldwin Knows



If you can’t find Alec Baldwin these days, he is probably playing the new updated “Words With Friends.”

In case you forgot, Alec got into trouble on an American Airlines flight December, 2011 when he refused to turn off his phone minutes before his Los Angeles bound flight to New York was about to take off because he was playing the Scrabble-type game. To refresh your memory, click here.

When the story broke, “Words With Friends” became even more popular than it had been. Being a publicist, I still insist the whole incident was a set-up, but I’m not interested in debating that now.

I’m here to tell you one of our favorite digital games just had a update. You can read about it in USA Today. Just to set the record straight, “Words With Friends” is not associated with Scrabble. Apparently, there are enough differences that Zynga, the parent company of “Words With Friends,” is able to co-exist with Hasbro, maker of Scrabble.

Some of the new updated features:

1-Community Matches: Players can search for a more ideal opponent.

2-A Dictionary and Word of the Day to improve your vocabulary.

3-A new type of personal profile

4-Your game stats, with wins and losses.

5-The number of unique words you have used.

I don’t know if I’m happy about these improvements. Once I see my lousy stats in a snapshot view, I may want to quit forever. Forever is a long time. I have to remind myself, it’s just a game. Hear that, Alec?


Alec Baldwin Revisited


My internist Bruce Yaffe, MD is good friends with Alec Baldwin. He insists that the Words With Friends fiasco aboard American Airlines was not a PR stunt. I didn’t want to debate that point because I was naked on the examination table. The only thing between me and him was my paper gown. I was feeling very vulnerable. I didn’t want him to see my extra pounds. I agreed with him immediately.

But I know better. My cousin Harvey Oshinsky bumped into Alec in the Murray Hill section of Manhattan soon after AA threw him off a flight because he wouldn’t turn off his cell while playing Words with Friends. Alec told Harvey the incident was for real. I argued the point with Harvey for an hour. He was relentless. It runs in my family. The day after Alec made headlines, hundreds of thousands of people downloaded the word game. Hmm?

Meanwhile the controversy over whether we should be allowed to use our cell phones and/or other electronics when the doors close on an airplane continues. The New York Times just reported a study released by two industry groups, the Airline Passenger Experience Association and the Consumer Electronics Association that takes a look at the whole situation. Thirty percent of all passengers said they had accidentally left a device on during takeoff or landing. When asked if they turn their devices to “off,” 59 percent of passengers said they do fully turn their electronics off and 21 percent said they just rely on airplane mode.

The Federal Aviation Administration recently said it would begin a review of its policies on electronic devices in all phases of flight. The study also found that four out of ten passengers would like to use their devices during all phases of flight, including takeoff and landing.

To date, there has been no proof that electronic devices interfere with the operation of an aircraft.

Maybe Alec wasn’t working with Words with Friends after all. Rather he was paid by a group of deep-pocketed businessmen who want to see the rules changed. Ever since Alec was almost arrested, the subject has certainly been a topic of discussion.