No, this is not a post about books! I have a small collection of things that I have read lately that have made me react, and I want to share with you:
- I receive a newsletter from a baby food producer, and the name of the newsletter is: “On the side of the mummies“! I wonder if the * was added after some daddies protested? (“* not to forget the daddies!”) I guess that it is true that it is mostly women who take responsibility for the baby food, but as a Swede I do react to this title! We do not buy ready-made baby food except for when travelling, as we try to give V home-cooked food as much as possible. Opps, it is actually I, and not O, who does this…
- Chocolate biscuits for babies? I know that I live in a chocolate country, but why do babies need to taste chocolate, or for that matter biscuits? In the above-mentioned baby food newsletter, there is a note about “responsible gourmandise” (gourmandise can be translated as “a weakness for sweet things”) where it is stated that you as a parent might be tempted to share a biscuite with your baby and then this type is perfect! It is healthy! Ok, so this is in the same part of the world where Kinder chocolate is marketed as healthy because it is milk chocolate, sigh… I actually buy porridge in Sweden and bring back to Belgium as here all the porridges are either flavoured with honey (not to be given to children under 1 year) or chocolate, and I believe that babies do not need to get used to sweet stuff from such an early age! The longer you can avoid introducing sweetened food, the better, is my principle (and most Swedes, I believe).
- Belgium is holding local elections in October and they have a huge campaign at the moment to convince the European foreign residents to register to vote. As European citizens we are entitled to vote in the local elections (it’s an EU regulation). O received this letter in Spanish, while I got one in… French. In the office we have posters and brochures about registration to vote. What is not so well pointed out is that if you register to vote, you automatically have an obligation to vote in the following [local and European] elections. You will be fined if you don’t, as per the Belgian election law!!
- And now to another obligation, and something typically Swedish (!?) according to the Belgian newspaper Metro (15th June 2012): The staff at Swedish creches are forcing (ok, it says “encourages”) young boys to sit down and pee! And now the regional council of Sörmland is considering obliging men to sit down in order to keep the toilets clean in its building. Apparently sitting down to pee may lower the risk of prostate problems, and may contribute to a better and longer sex life according to a Swedish left-wing politician. Hm, how did I miss this “debate” in the Swedish newspapers?
*) And a Swedish phenomenon!?