Tag Archives: Instagram

Dr. Nikki Gorman: Westport Pediatrician, International TikTok Star

There’s never a dull moment in pediatrics.

One moment, Dr. Nikki Gorman may advise a new mother why children should not play with magnets. The next, she may tell a teenager it’s okay to have a same-gender crush.

Of course, not everyone has a Dr. Nikki (as she likes to be called) — or access to a practice like Village Pediatrics on Riverside Avenue.

So Dr. Nikki is reaching out to a wider group of parents, children and teens. And she’s meeting them on their turf: TikTok and Instagram.

Growing up in Palos Verdes, California, Dr. Nikki loved performing. She also knew she wanted to work with kids. Pediatrics was a natural career. Acting fell by the wayside.

She and her then-husband, a cardiologist, came to Westport 19 years ago. She joined Dr. Jerry Lieberman’s Weston practice. As he wound down his practice, Dr. Gorman and her partner Dr. Jennifer Gruen established Village Pediatrics.

Dr. Nikki Gorman

She realized that the important information she was conveying reached only a tiny fraction of people who needed to hear it. For years she thought about writing a board book, with real but lighthearted messages on everything from sleep and feeding to sex and drugs.

“When you give birth, you don’t know what your baby will turn out to be,” Dr. Nikki notes.

“You may have a tough toddler. There may be middle school drama, illness and family strife. When you look at your beautiful newborn, you can’t predict any of that. But every parent will face challenges.”

Yet a board book might not be the way to reach a new generation of parents, Dr. Gorman recognized.

“Young parents in their 20s and 30s have ADD — and I don’t mean that in a negative way,” she says.

“They see flashes of things. Their brain is trained to move quickly from one thing to another.” Conveying her messages in quick video bursts on social media platforms would be key to getting her messages across.

They were also likely to be discovered and appreciated by people far beyond Dr. Nikki’s Westport office.

An important message from Dr. Nikki.

During a new mothers presentation for Malta House — the Norwalk non-profit serving homeless pregnant women and new mothers — she discussed the need for vitamin D supplements during nursing.

“Some mothers might not know that,” she says. “If they see it on TikTok, they’ll learn. And they’ll share it with their friends.”

Dr. Nikki was not a TikTok user. But Zibrille Pepito — her office scribe, who works remotely from the Philippines — is. She was happy to help.

She tutored her boss in how to set the camera, where and when to point — in other words, how to be a TikTok star.

@drnikki_

Reply to @octaseed 👍 #dancingdoctornikki #docnikki #villagepediatricswestportct #villagepediatrics #connecticut #pediatiktoktalk #fyp

♬ original sound – drnikki_ – TikTokDoc

TikTok videos can’t be longer than 90 seconds. Instagram videos must be at least a minute. Dr. Nikki aims for that sweet spot in between, so the same video can be posted to both platforms.

“People love them,” she says of her return to performing. “The audience is growing. We haven’t even sent them out to our practice yet.”

She tries to post one video a day. She films during downtime between patients — and can do several at a time.

Dr. Nikki has no problem finding topics. “I just think about what goes on during each visit. That’s the joy of pediatrics: You see people from 0 to 22 years old.’

Meanwhile, they and their parents see their pediatrician on their favorite social media sites.

Along with everyone else, anywhere on the planet.

You can follow Dr. Nikki on TikTok @drnikki_ and on Instagram: drnikkigorman.

@drnikki_

Get them vaccinated 👍 #dancingdoctornikki #docnikki #villagepediatricswestportct #villagepediatrics #connecticut #covidvaccine #vaccination #fyp

♬ original sound – TikTokDoc – TikTokDoc

Take A Selfie With Sam And Betsy

For years, Uncle Sam and Lady Liberty were packed away inside.

Now, the pair of Einsel kinetic sculptures — Walter’s tips his hat, and his eyes light up; his wife Naiad’s torch shines, and her heart pulsates — have been moved from the Westport Historical Society’s cobblestone barn, onto the Avery Place lawn.

The public is invited to take selfies with “Sam” and “Betsy.” (No, I don’t know why the Statue of Liberty bears Betsy Ross’ name — maybe it’s her flag dress?).

Photos can be posted to the statues’ Instagram account: Betsy_and_Sam. Each week, the WHS will give a prize from its gift shop for the funniest, most creative selfie.

Please respect Sam and Betsy. Don’t climb on them. After all, they were born in the 1800s.

James Comey, The Bible, The Buddha And Westport

Yesterday, James Comey joined 800 million other Instagram users.

Perhaps it was a coincidence — he may have finally gotten around to unpacking all those boxes, following the sale of his Greens Farms home and being fired as FBI director — but his first-ever post got a lot more attention than most people’s cats or restaurant meals.

Shortly after Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to (whoa!) the FBI, Comey — who snagged the pretty-obvious-but-apparently-untaken username “Comey” — posted a just-subtle-enough biblical verse: “But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.” 

He illustrated it with a lovely photo of an ever-flowing stream.

It quickly racked up over 21,000 likes.

However, it was his 2nd — and so far, final — photo that makes this an “06880”-worthy story.

Two hours ago, Comey posted this shot:

It’s a scene every Westporter is familiar with — and loves.

So does Comey. His caption: “Beautiful Long Island Sound from Westport, CT. To paraphrase the Buddha — Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun; the moon; and the truth.”

It’s already gotten over 8,000 likes.

Many of his Instagram followers agree with his message.

But whatever your politics, “06880” readers agree: This “Comey” guy knows a beautiful sunset when he sees one.‬

 

Stephen Wilkes’ Blood Moon

Stephen Wilkes has a thing for Compo Beach.

And National Geographic has a thing for Stephen Wilkes.

In June, the magazine’s very popular Instagram feed featured the talented Westport photographer’s shot of some amazing clouds — framed by a lifeguard stand — after a storm.

In a matter of hours, it gained hundreds of thousands of likes — and admiring comments in dozens of languages.

Yesterday, the Natgeo Instagram feed included Wilkes’ lovely shot of Sunday night’s fantastic eclipse.

Copyright/Stephen Wilkes

Copyright/Stephen Wilkes

Wilkes wrote:

A view we won’t have again until 2033. In many parts of the US, clouds obstructed this incredible phenomenon. In my case, I drove a few miles from my home to a local beach and was very excited to find a clear sky, allowing me to take an unobstructed photo of the #bloodmooneclipse.

Once again, “06880” is where Westport meets the world — as well as the moon, the sky and the stars.

(Hat tip: Kathie Motes Bennewitz)

National Geographic Focuses On Westport

Tuesday’s post-storm clouds sent a lot of Westporters scurrying for their cameras.

Most photos ended up on Facebook or Twitter.

Stephen Wilkes’ found its way to National Geographic — and then to the magazine’s very popular Instagram feed.

National Geographic photo of Compo Beach by Stephen Wilkes

(Photo/Stephen Wilkes)

Alert “06880” reader Danielle Dobin spotted it, and sent it to “06880.”

“Natgeo” included Wilkes’ comment: “I was fortunate to see this remarkable sunset from Compo beach, after days of summer storms.” It included the hashtags iPhoneonly, CompoBeach, Connecticut, surreal, clouds, color — and skyporn.

In just 2 hours it’s garnered 167,000 likes, and over 1,150 comments. Most are along the lines of “awesome.” One person called it “weird.” Another said, “where we got married!!”

A woman wrote, “I want to go there.”

The comments came from around the globe. One person said “Lijkt beetje op jouw lucht,” which Google Translate changed from Dutch to “Seems little air on you.”

That’s not as weird as this comment — 刚刚在他家买了一只沛纳海 很牛逼 大家要买表找他,最靠谱的卖家 朋友圈都有标价 — which Google Translate believes says “He just bought a house very fast hardware you buy a Panerai watch to find him, the most likely price the seller has a circle of friends.”

On the other hand, “06880” readers don’t need a translator to look at Stephen Wilkes’ image and say, “that’s our Compo!”

Supervising Kids’ Cyber Lives: What Can Parents Do?

Like whack-a-moles, social media concerns pop up all over the school landscape. Middle school teachers and administrators often deal with cyber-bullying. Last spring, the anonymous app Yik Yak caused an uproar at Staples.

Recently, after a cyber-bullying incident via Instagram, an elementary school principal sent a letter to parents, then followed up with visits to each classroom. A parent at the school then sent this letter to “06880,” hoping to share it with a wide audience. Here it is:

Though Instagram requires children to be at least 13 years old, our children sign up, posting pictures and remarks which could lead to permanent consequences. A 10-year-old most likely does not understand the importance of reputation management. One inappropriate post can cause them a lifetime of unfortunate consequences, not to mention hurting other innocent people.

Instagram is not the only concern. Other social media vehicles (Facebook, Yik Yak, Twitter, Vine, to name a few) pose the same threat when misused.

Instagram is a popular social media platform for teenagers -- and younger children.

Instagram is a popular social media platform for teenagers — and younger children.

As parents we are in a tough spot, balancing granting our children the internet access their peers seem to have through mobile devices and computers with keeping them safe (not only from online predators but tarnishing their own reputations for unthoughtful behavior). Now the schools are asking our help in keeping our children’s cyber-activity responsible.

We can put on parental controls, talk to them about internet safety practices, even have them sign contracts. However, I think we need to take more responsibility to closely monitor their activity and be in the know of where our children really are online.

Giving our kids devices with internet access without supervising is no different than allowing them to throw a party, advising them not to drink and then voluntarily leaving the house. We need to choose to either prevent their access to devices that access the Internet (highly unlikely — most kids in our community have handheld devices by 11 or 12 years old, and at the very least a computer at home), or take responsibility to monitor their online activity across all devices.

cyber controls

Many friends ask me if I feel guilty looking at what my kids are doing online. My response? With the alarming increase in children’s cyber-crimes, I have a responsibility to be a parent and be in the know. While I don’t micromanage every last online action they take, I have the ability to  perform regular spot checks or at least check it any time I feel concerned.

We can’t afford not to monitor our children online as they access the internet, and especially as the internet accesses them. Too many cyber-crime stories involving children and unaware parents have been reported after it’s too late.  The risks are way too big.

What do you think? How do you monitor your children’s online activities? What’s appropriate for what ages? Click “Comments” below to contribute to this important conversation.