Wednesday, October 24, 2007


The reason the weight and height of the baby is so important that they are measured immediately after birth, is because the father needs to send the text message to everyone he knows "(name) was born at (time), weighing (amount) grams and at a height of (amount) cm. Mom and child are both well."

We're looking forward to all these important numbers in obituaries. "Grandpa died today at 18:23:21, weighing 78 kg and with a height of 182 cm. He lost 42 grams of soul at the moment of death, but gained an entire 75 kg since birth, an average of 972 grams per year."

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Operation: Day's worth of work

Every year, Norwegian high school students take a day off school to "sacrifice" a day's work to a given charity. The event is known as "Operasjon dagsverk" - Operation: A day's worth of work. The charities usually has to do with education, and with focus on a speific area.

This year, the theme is global warming and the location Central America. And this is where it gets interesting. The idea is that through education, youth can take a stand against the ever increasing life standards and its environmental impact. So far so good.

The problem, as I see it, is the recurring one: We implement a "modernized" school system which promotes higher living standards, higher consumption and thus also higher environmental impacts. This is demonstrated by the fact that their example of education for a prosperous future is, indeed, as a mechanic of combustible engines. That is not to speak of all the other types of education that can get you a job as a factory worker in a multinational corportation with high environmental impact.

And then I have not even touched the fact that the 8 page A4 information full colour "brochure" is printed on extra heavy paper and covered with chemicals, then distributed to hundreds of thousands of students and teachers across the entire country - instead of just distributing a PDF. Alas, less than 1/3rd of what you end up donating to the cause is spent on wasteful management and other environmentally dangerous activities.