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Monthly Archives: June 2008

My History teacher is, at present, engrossed in an effort to indoctrinate the whole school with Cold War propaganda.

It all started when he was trying to find “educational materials” for his year 11 History class — that is, my class. He found a great archive of “social guidance” films, produced in the 1950s to guide young, responsible Americans. With such titles as How to be a Good Citizen at School and How Quiet is Beneficial in the Classroom1, he just knew this was something his year 11 History class should see. And, hey, why stop there? The connection between these films and the Cold War was pretty strong, but he was sure there was a connection between them and the American Revolution (duh, America!), and another one between them and year 8 English (after all, what language are the films in?). He downloaded as many as his laptop would fit, and then he probably cackled evilly as he thought about how he was going to put his master plan in action. It sounds like something he’d do. Read More »


The time has finally come for me to attempt that daunting task all bloggers must face at some time or another: writing an “About” page. Whenever I find a new, enticing blog, the first page I look at is always the “About” page, and yet I haven’t had one here since April. What an oversight! Personally, I think a blog without an “About” page is like a map without a legend — fine if you already know what everything means, but tough going otherwise. If the purpose of an “About” page is to act as a legend for a blog, however, what should one put on it?

Well, that’s the ultimate question, isn’t it? Truth be told, I’m not sure of the answer. When it comes to writing my own “About” page (which I still haven’t completed yet), I’ve just been keeping in mind what I’m looking for when I check such a page. There are three main things I want to learn from them, and these are: Read More »

The very first news item that ever attracted my attention appeared all the way back in 2000, when I was seven years old. It was a Saturday morning, and I had painstakingly poured myself a bowl of cereal and carried it to my kitchen table, careful not to spill even one drop of milk. The only clear part of the table — for, as long as I can remember, there has only ever been one clear part of the table — was directly in front of a large page, clearly taken out of the newspaper, and on this page was an A3-sized black-and-white photograph. It depicted a woman sobbing as she knelt over and cuddled her child in a grassy field. Behind her stood a wire fence, and behind that stood a mob, carrying weapons and fires on sticks. Read More »