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It's official, I'm addicted to Quizup. What is it about iPad games that is so alluring? It's probably just because I miss playing Trivial Abuse Pursuit with my family so much. I tried to get Karin to play with me and she promptly challenged me in World of Warcraft. *rolls eyes*

I forgot to mention that Martin was elected co-editor of the IB school newsletter. He's been a staff writer this past term and then decided to apply for the editor job. It was 3 people, and he and one other girl got the job. He had to answer a bunch of essay questions that included things like "What is the best pizza?" and "As editor, what would you do if one of your writers didn't turn their story in on time and the deadline is now?" They will co-edit for a year, so all of spring term this year and fall term next year before turning it over to the next crop of upcoming students. He said their first job is going to be hard: finding a new layout person since the current one is also having to leave. Anyway, he is very excited and I'm thrilled for him.

One of the school assignments that Martin is working on is an oral presentation, called Further Oral Assessment, which is a text analysis but they are allowed to dissect a film if they want because the cinematography counts as the movie's text as well as the screenplay and he's chosen to do his on the film Den Nya Människan (The New Man). They watched the film in Swedish class and he told me the whole plot and asked if I wanted to watch it with him as he needs to watch it through a couple of times. It didn't sound like very uplifting subject matter, but he convinced me that it was a really well-done and interesting movie, so I agreed.

We watched it tonight via YouTube. It's based on a true story, of a young woman who is taken by the government to a work institute in 1950's Sweden, where many young people, especially girls, were incarcerated and forcibly sterilized as part of a government program to "clean up" the population. All of the young people had some sort of condition or "disorder" that made them less than ideal citizens in the eyes of the program. The story, despite its horrifying premise, had a feisty protagonist and a clear fight-back message, though the main character's story doesn't end very happily.

Most unbelievably, forced sterilization was carried out in Sweden until 1974 and only completely removed from the books TWO YEARS AGO. Sweden was by no means the only country that carried out such programs; even the US was guilty at various times. It was a very well-done movie, though Martin complained that all the male characters in it were both loathsome and one-dimensional, which was true. I don't know if it's available with English subtitles; the version we watched didn't have them, but it was well worth seeing.

I can't believe it's already nearly bedtime on Sunday night. The weekends go MUCH too fast. *sigh*
mood: tired
music: buzzy computer, clicky keys


Congrats to Martin - I'm sure he'll enjoy the year as co-editor. It's a good experience. I was on staff of the school paper. Can't say I would want to watch this movie, but it's definitely hard to believe that Sweden had such a program -actually lowers my high opinion of the country! Love, Lizardmom

Sweden was hardly alone. The US had just as horrifying a program for nearly as long.

I downloaded Quiz Up based on your enthusiasm. I'm using my e11en username so I can play with people outside of FB but I'm not entirely sure how that works. Challenge me to a game so I can add you!

How many years does Martin have left before college? Does he have any thoughts on that front yet?

I'll send you a request tonight when I get home :)

Martin has the rest of this year and next year left before college (if he was in the States, this would be his senior year). But he's been talking about taking a gap year to travel around Australia, so we'll see.

The eugenics movement of the 1920s in the U.S. was similarly horrifying (I've just been reading about it in Bill Bryson's "One Summer"). The things humans do to each other are desperately sad.

Congratulations to Martin! That's a great experience for him.

It seems like it wasn't just the 20's... the programs in the States went into the mid-1970s as well. Erk.

I'd be interested to know if Martin's answer to "As editor, what would you do if one of your writers didn't turn their story in on time and the deadline is now?" involved the use of a pillory and rotten tomatoes :-)

Seriously, what a terrific learning opportunity for him and a big responsibility as well. I hope he loves his time there.

Gosh, when Mark Twain wrote 'The more I learn about people, the more I like my dog' he was right on the money when it comnes to the level of cruelty man can inflict on his fellow man for the most spurious and specious reasons. I'd heard about this compulsory sterilisation program before and was flabbergasted that it went on in Sweden who prides itself on human rights. There are shameful histories in my own land about The Stolen Generations and the Home Children, all endorsed in secret by successive governments who sought to silence any potential whistle blowers that you begin to lose faith in humanity. I really don't know how the victims of these programs managed to go on with their lives. It's heartbreaking.

The only drawback is that as editor, he won't actually get to write anything. I think that's too bad, as he's a very talented writer and he didn't have a chance to write that many pieces while he was on the writing staff. But it will be great experience, regardless!

Many of the victims of the sterilization program were compensated monetarily later, at least...which isn't much, but at least it's something.

From Megsie

Yay for Martin. That is too bad that he can't write too. What about an editorial? That is named after the Editor, right?

I have never heard of this notion of forced sterilization...except for experiments in Nazi Germany. How awful! Humanity is gross sometimes.

I am behind...I still hate that my Lizardek mailbox is not right on my mail page. It was an instant reminder! Ugh.

Re: From Megsie

Yes, he will get to do the editorial, or co-write it, at least.

WHy isn't your lizardek mailbox on your mail page? Fix!

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