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Sunday, March 11, 2007

Learning geography from Asterix

Amongst the householders at our place, this set of French cartoons has become a popular one recently, and the whole set has been gradually picked up from the library and read voraciously. Actually, Asterix seems like quite a good geography lesson, (if mainly restricted to Europe) doesn't it, and the puns are good for the average adult. I actually fell to reading Asterix in Japanese, when I lived in Japan, which was quite enjoyable, especially when you remember them as well as I do. The official website is worth a look, if you're into this crew.
And, here's the English version of the latest typically hollywoody music for the most recent Asterix movie:

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Foetal position

As I lead a Catholic retreat this week, I am reminded of the way I get caught up in activity. Frenetic activity consumes me until I am uncomfortably numb, as opposed to the Pink Floyd song. This picture, my partner's, sums it up well. The bright lights, (have you ever been to the casino?), attract us - at least at first. Eventually we succumb and assume the position we held in the womb.

Year 12 students, who I will take on retreat, need to avoid this reaction to the violence of the push for results and the pressures of the year. How they can avoid this is perhaps by following some Leunig strategies.

For there are some who desire to know only for the sake of knowing; and this is disgraceful curiosity.
And there are some who desire to know, that they may become known themselves; and this is disgraceful vanity....
And there are also some who desire to know in order to sell their knowledge, as for money, or for degrees; and this is disgraceful commercialism.
But there are also some who desire to know in order to edify; and this is love.
- Bernard, Abott of Clairvaux 12th C