Saturday, February 25, 2006

Marjorie Bly of Penghu

Earlier this evening I caught a story on the TV news about Pres. Chen's visit to Marjorie Bly, a retired American nurse who is in a Penghu hospital. The reason that I mention this is that I only first heard of her very recently when I was going through some archival documents for my disseration and she was mentioned in a letter from the late 1950s. It was quite an interesting coincidence.

Bly, whose Chinese name is 白寶珠 (Bai Baozhu, which means "White Precious Pearl"), has lived in Taiwan since 1952 (most of those years in Penghu), helping people with leprosy. She is 87 years old and is in failing health, and the president's visit was to express the country's appreciation for her love and care for people with leprosy. A Chinese-language story about Chen's visit to Bly is available here (thanks, Linda!). Another Chinese-language story that covers Bly's 50 years in Taiwan is here. There's an English-language story from 2002 that reports on a fund raised to help her in her retirement and to continue to help people with leprosy. And here is an English story on her receipt of permanent residency in honor of her work in Taiwan.

[Update, 3/11/06: David Bly has included and linked to more information on his blog, including a Taiwan News article that I hadn't noticed. (For some reason, the TN article--actually a Central News Agency release--gets Marjorie Bly's name mixed up, calling her "Bly Marjorie Ingeleiv"...)]

Tuesday, February 21, 2006


Last night we went to "Tea Work" on Wenxin Road for dinner. Walking into the restaurant, we spotted a cute little baby (maybe a year old) sitting in a high chair at a table across from the cashier. He was playing with his mother's wallet while she and a friend chatted. A few minutes later, as I took our order to the cashier, he held his mother's credit card out to me, as if to say, "沒關係,你拿去用!別客氣!"

我實在太感動了!年輕人,你好大方! (I didn't take his offer, of course...)

Thursday, February 09, 2006

In news about Wikipedia...

From BBC News:
Online reference site Wikipedia blames US Congress staff for partisan changes to a number of political biographies.

Computers traced to Capitol Hill removed unpalatable facts from articles on senators, while other entries were "vandalised", the site said.
The article goes on to report that
Wikipedia says the controversy raises questions about whether it is ethical for those with a vested interest in the subject to edit entries about it.
On the other hand, the article cites Wikipedia as saying that "its investigation showed the vast majority of edits from Senate IPs were 'beneficial and helpful'."

I suppose there's some degree of transparency to the Wikipedia's articles if you're willing to go to the trouble of figuring out who made particular changes, as the Wikipedia folks did here.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Journal of Public Deliberation

A few months ago I noted an article and an editorial in the Taiwan News regarding the possibilities for deliberative democracy in Taiwan. Tangentially related to that, today I came across the Journal of Public Deliberation. It doesn't have any articles about Taiwan (yet), but it looks interesting. And it's Open Access, through the Berkeley Electronic Press, which means your library doesn't have to pay companies like Elsevier tons of money to read it... (Wow! How many issues have I touched on in this short post?)

[Update, 2/10/05: Schenectady Synecdoche suggests asking the editors of JPD to set up an RSS feed. Sounds like a good idea! (I wanted to say this on SS's post, but her blog evidently doesn't like my comments: it tells me "Your comment was denied for questionable content." Hmmm... it's not like I cussed or anything...)]

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Puppy pics found over the holidays

When we were back home over the CNY holidays, I came across a few pics of Mei-mei from about 11 years ago. Thought I'd share a couple of 'em with y'all...

When I get time, I'll add a picture of her from her "awkward teenage years"...