Sep. 6th, 2002

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My parents are safely back from China, and had a wonderful time. I'm very glad.

I was brought back, by way of presents (anent what's being hidden away for Christmas) a postcard of a coloured lacquer "Tiaoshen" mask of an Ox-Headed demon, a cool bookmark with a dragon on it, a painted wooden spoon from Feng-du with designs to keep demons away, and a charm with a dragon carved on it from the Yellow Mountain made of hundred-year-old camel bone.

My parents know what to get me. :)

Other than that -- thank goodness it's the weekend.

---

MANY people have wondered why it is that children's stories are so full of moralizing. The reason is perfectly simple: it is that children like moralizing more than anything else, and eat it up as if it were so much jam. The reason why we, who are grown up, dislike moralizing is equally clear: it is that we have discovered how much perversion and hypocrisy can be mixed with it; we have grown to dislike morality not because morality is moral, but because morality is so often immoral. But the child has never seen the virtues twisted into vices; the child does not know that men are not only bad from good motives, but also often good from bad motives. The child does not know that whereas the Jesuit may do evil that good may come, the man of the world often does good that evil may come. Therefore, the child has a hearty, healthy, unspoiled, and insatiable appetite for mere morality; for the mere difference between a good little girl and a bad little girl. And it can be proved by innumerable examples that when we are quite young we do like the moralizing story. Grown-up people like the "Comic Sandford and Merton," but children like the real "Sandford and Merton."
'Daily News.' -- GK Chesterton

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