Day 237 — Not so fast, Springtime

Reports of the death of winter have been premature as evidenced by this afternoons snowfall. Mariette documented if for posterity.

Because it only hovered around zero it did not stick long so this may be winter’s last gasp. We shall see.

In other local news, I began teaching a conversational English course today at the local adult education school in town. The students are managers from a firm in a nearby town and we had a ball exploring some of the crazier quirks of English. It occurred to me that the letters -ough can be pronounced in any number of ways which can be confusing as hell to a non-English speaker. Think of: though, through, rough, bough, thought and there is another that escapes me at the moment. Anyway, this will be fun.

We got another window on the Swedish mind today on the national news. Like the U.S., Sweden has its prisons for people who have committed horrendous crimes but who have been judged insane (as if there is any criminal who isn’t!). Anyway, the inmates in these prisons for the criminally insane are given cell phones and computers. Well, it turns out that some of these folks are using these devices from their cells to threaten and attempt to intimidate people in the real world. One nut was saying how he was going to kill someone when he got out. Real rational stuff.

But here is the interesting point of all this: there are people here actually advocating for the rights of these lunatics to have cell phones and computers. One can sort of understand the thinking behind such advocacy: these people got the way they are by being cut off from social relationships in the first place. But, hey, Sweden, how about monitoring the calls or putting filters on the computers?

Some of the things I hear about truly amaze me and this was one of them.


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