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what is everyone doing?

Sideshow Meg

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When our boys were born, the first in 1958, circumcision was routine, the idea being (as far as I know) that uncircumcised males posed a danger of causing cervical cancer in the women they had relations with because of secretions if not circumcised.  That's as delicately put as I can manage and even that has caused me to feel just a mite uncomfortable.   :rolleyes:   

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That's as delicately put as I can manage and even that has caused me to feel just a mite uncomfortable.   :rolleyes:   


Yes, I know.  I agree.  I think that's the issue still, by the way, so I'm not sure that poor Ting will want to respond to my question.  

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Ting, I have to ask.  What do you do that makes radio programs promoting male circumcision something that you do?  

I have heard that this is considered an important issue in Africa, which is interesting to me because there's a big movement in the United States against male circumcision.  We did not circumcise our son and I thought he might end up being the only one, but he's not.  In fact, the subject came up once with a group of 4 mothers from his elementary school and only 1 of them had circumcised her son.  One was from the U.K. (where I guess it's a lot less common), one was way more of an earth mother than I will ever be or even aspire to be (she had her children at home, is a vegetarian, etc.), and one was me.  I jokingly said that I didn't believe in ritually mutilating my child's genitals, but that really is sort of why we didn't do it.  And I wasn't convinced by the health claims.  But I know the debate rages in other parts of the world.

Oh dear. Poor Binker, I'm so sorry.  I've only just seen this, which is why I haven't replied sooner. 

I write and produce entertainment-education radio programmes focusing mainly on reproductive health issues - sexual networks, HIV, inconsistent condom use; a whole gamut of stuff that kills people prematurely, mainly because of lack of knowledge and some weirdly insane traditional beliefs and cultural practices.  Probably the biggest contributing factor is the belief that men are entitled to have sex whenever and with whomsoever they want. A traditional saying is "A man' infidelity does not break up a home."

Anyway, it seems that the risk of HIV transmission is reduced if a man is circumcised, and that's the reason for promoting it, because circumcision is not commonly done in this part of Africa.  But because of the huge number of misconceptions, traditions, myths and superstitions that are going to get in the way, persuading adult males to cooperate is going to be a challenge.

At which point I'd better stop, because I could go on for ever about my work!

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I wish you luck in your work Ting, must be difficult dealing with centuries of tradition etc.  I'd be interested in hearing more about your work, sounds incredibly interesting and challenging.  The traditional saying I guess originated with the men?  :)

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I lost internet connection for 24 hours from yesterday morning - scary!


We usually stay home on BH weekends. but yesterday we went to a "Country Fair" in a village about 1/2hrs drive away. After torrential rain all day Saturday, and a drizzly morning it was a hot and sunny afternoon, and we had a lovely time. There were the usual Arena events - heavy horses, dog agility, duck-herding - plus (Mr meg's favourite) a restored 1919  Le Rhône rotary aircraft engine.

Loads and loads of side-shows and stalls, mummers, and (my favourite) a couple of sets by this summer's local success story, 27 Strings, a folk band of lads from a local school.



The violinist is just 12.


Younger Son and his Lovely Bride turned up here at teatime with the memory chip of their wedding photographs. I spent the evening, and some of this morning transferring all 900+ of them into the iPhoto album in which I already had about 50 that Elder Son and I had taken :yikes:

Eventually I will sort & edit them so that I have a sensible amount to make a representative album of the day.

For now, 'though, I need to get out into the garden - the weeds are loving the mixture of heavy rain and hot sun we are getting at the moment.

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Meg, that band is excellent and the vocalist has a great voice - maybe they'll make it into the big time.  Violinist is very talented at such a young age.  Hope they really go places.   :clap:

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Also late, but heartfelt, Congratulations to The Maid and Athena.


Don't get me wrong, I love animals and all wildlife ... but this morning I have been chasing rabbits off the garden!!  For the last couple of years - or maybe more - we have been invaded by rabbits in our garden.  Perhaps I ought to explain that our garden is adjacent to fields where cows occasionally graze.  We also get flocks of birds and the occasional pair of pheasants.  But the rabbits that have taken up residence in the field have caused havoc to our garden. 


They particularly like the poppies, which is a plant I love, and we have a whole bed of various varities in our front garden that are (or should I say were) my pride and joy.  They also like several other shrubs and small plants in our back garden.  Apart from that they nibble away at our carefully nurtured lawn and deposit their excrement as they do (sorry about that but it has to be said).  We have now discovered two products that deter but in no way harm the rabbits.  One is for spraying the ground (is strongest and harmful to plants) to put them off (a bit like cat and dog repellent) and the other is for spraying on the plants themselves which does the same thing. 


The plant spray definitely works because this summer we had a much better display of poppies and the rabbits seemed to stay away from them.  However, we have just dug over a piece of ground next to the field where we used to have a greenhouse and this morning there was a huge hole where a rabbit or rabbits have tried to dig another burrow but were thwarted by the stone slabs that support the side of the bed into the field.  And to add to my dismay, there was daddy rabbit sitting in the middle of the lawn looking at me as if to say 'sucks boo to you'.  He ran off when I went outside of course, but the ground has now been sprayed with the rabbit repellent and I await the next move! :grumble:

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