Kidnapped by a parent in India

Can you kidnap your own child?  What if you are a divorced parent in a custody battle?  The answer in India apparently is – yes, you can, and it’s legal. I was reading this article on the Atlantic about how some parents in the US who are involved in custody battles kidnap their children from…

To do: Return child to shelf

“Several times a month we’re seeing kids being left by parents who say they can’t afford them anymore..” More here. I’ve heard of people abandoning their dogs and cats in this recession.  So was it just a matter of time before a few of them moved on to abandoning their own children?

An afternoon of hot air

First, there was a flying balloon with a boy in it.  Then the balloon landed, but there was no boy.  Then aerodynamics/ balloon experts said the balloon could never have carried the boy anyway. Then there was a basket which had been possibly attached to the balloon with the boy in it – and it…

Audio lessons for fetuses

Soon babies will bawl in French. Or perhaps they will bawl in Raag Malhar. The Washington Post had this recent article about women giving “audio lessons” to their babies so they could recognize patterns and sounds. I’m sorry, did I say babies? I meant fetuses. That’s right, so now you have devices that can teach…

Why it’s better not to type

I have a letter beside me that I need to finish writing. A letter that I am laboriously writing by hand. I have an uncle who insists on getting handwritten letters. Even though he is nearly eighty now, his own hand writing is neat and legible, and is the sort of cursive writing you rarely…

William Safire and the English language

Years ago,  I used to read William Safire’s columns on the English language in Frontline.   His columns made English grammar and usage seem more interesting than Wren and Martin ever could.  I did not know then that he was a conservative political columnist, or that he was Nixon’s speechwriter, or that he worked at the New…

Indians and murder-suicides

Two murder suicides in two continents, separated by just a few days and eight thousand miles.  And yet they are so vastly different in nature.   Indians, for one,, seem to have a different way of doing things when it comes to murder-suicides. I seem to be reading about murder-suicides so much more frequently this year.  …