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Monthly Archives: February 2011

On slut-shaming

Hamlet: Heaven and earth, Must I remember? Why, she would hang on him As if increase of appetite had grown By what it fed on, and yet, within a month— Let me not think on’t—Frailty, thy name is woman!— Hamlet, Act 1, scene 2 I’ve written before about the schoolgirl who leaked photographs of St […]

melissa

Eye-candy du jour… Colourful and visually stunning – but also important in our understanding of scientific advances – the winners of this year’s Wellcome Image Awards range from a close up look at a bloody sticking-plaster, to the striking shades of a ruby-tailed wasp viewed through a microscope. The judging panel were looking for images […]

Christchurch Earthquake: Please Give Generously

The following organisations are accepting donations for those affected by the earthquake. Donate online at www.salvationarmy.org.nz By Post: The Salvation Army , PO Box 27 001 Marion Square, Wellington 6141, New Zealand. Please specify that your donation is for the Canterbury Earthquake Appeal. The Red Cross has launched an 0900 Appeal Members of the public […]

Roman à clef, not quite

One way–in days gone by, when the West at least was less free–for authors to satirize the Great and the Good was for them to employ the roman à clef, or ‘novel with a key’. The actual phrase was coined by leading French author Madeleine de Scudéry, who used the technique to do just that: […]

Australia Sux (New Zealand, Seven)

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has been blocked from addressing New Zealand’s sitting parliament during her visit to Wellington this week. The New Zealand Greens Party opposed a plan by the country’s National government for Ms Gillard to talk directly to parliament while in session this Wednesday, saying it would set an uncomfortable precedent. “In New […]

Alternative Lord of the Rings

I have a confession to make. My favourite character in the Lord of the Rings trilogy is Faramir. I wanted to marry Faramir when I was a teenager, despite him being fictional, and thus Mr Eagle harbours a bizarre jealousy against him, threatening to deface my Faramir bookmark. (Actually Eaglet No. 2 ruined the Faramir […]

Mercy for Seena

I was distressed to read today about Seena, a 9-year-old asylum seeker from Iran who was orphaned after the boat in which he was travelling sank in December last year. Seena has been in immigration detention on Christmas Island since that time, but was allowed to the mainland the other day for the funerals of […]

Black and White Balls

David Cameron says it is his “mission” in politics to make the Big Society succeed – amid claims it is being wrecked by spending cuts. The PM told social entrepreneurs the initiative would get all his “passion” over the five-year Parliament. The government has also set out details of how a Big Society bank to […]

‘Daring’ to be Different

My year nine English class wrote me a joint letter once. It asked me to kill myself in order to improve everyone else’s educational experience (I was disinclined to acquiesce to their request). It was the culmination of a two-year program of uncontrolled bullying at a supposedly “good” Australian GPS school that included the more […]

Trolley Dollies

A new Thai charter airline due to start operations on Asian routes in April is hiring transsexuals as flight attendants. More than 100 transvestites and transsexuals people applied for the first round of jobs. Four were chosen, along with 19 female and seven male flight attendants. Among the successful applicants was Dissanai Chitpraphachin, 23, who […]