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The Sticker-chart Generation

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My Godson fixes me with a beady eye. “If I finish my peas, do I get a sticker?” I was on holiday, taking the twins on a Progress to meet their northern relatives, and visiting friends en route. Every fridge I saw boasted a sticker-chart, and every meal seemed to go the same way, coupled with endless negotiation about getting dressed, sharing toys, doing jobs, and behaving in general. The more enterprising children would have shocked Luther with their creativity in conjuring up fresh sticker opportunities. They reminded me of those cartoon Catholics of yore, who played the system by figuring out that sinning generates more God points than leading a blameless life, because it enables you to get grace top-ups through confession and absolution.

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