Happy International Women’s Day!

For everyone who thinks that Valentine’s Day is overcommercialized and
promotes gender stereotypes, please consider celebrating today, 8
March, International Women’s Day.

 Accordingto the United Nations:

Why dedicate a day exclusively to the celebration of the
world’s women?

 The United Nations General Assembly, which is composed of delegates
from all the member countries, mentioned two reasons: firstly, to
recognize the fact that peace and social progress require the active
participation and equality of women; secondly, to acknowledge the
contribution of women to international peace and security.

 For the women of the world, the Day’s symbolism has a wider meaning:
It is an occasion to review how far they have come in their struggle
for equality, peace and development.

Wrapping paper wrap-up

I wanted to share with you this nice piece of traditional Norwegian
wrapping paper that came with Peg, who you met a couple days ago on
the blog here. What I like about this is the absence of the roly-poly
bearded Santa guy who would be featured on American paper; instead we
have red-capped elves delivering presents and some kind of
cool-looking yak pulling the sleigh.

 (Aside: the red cap or Phrygian cap, is a symbol of liberty dating
back to the ancient Greeks, who would give them to freed slaves. When
the Nazis invaded Norway, they banned traditional red-cap imagery and
illustrators instead turned to alternately colored caps.)

 The other cool thing about the paper is the green-coated fellow who’s
shoveling snow. Hunched over his shovel, having cleared a 50-meter
path all the way from the front door to the road, he pauses for a
break only to encounter some sugar-intoxicated goateed elf careening
down the lane, cackling madly and tossing wrapped packages hither and
thither. His expression says it all: “Jul be back next year, I don’t
doubt it.”