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Belgium in Brief: Playground Games

For the second time in two weeks, I’ve found myself writing about the Netflix series Squid Game, despite having not watched it yet.

The violent Korean TV show is taking the world by storm, with everyone from Youtubers to Belgian children placing their spin on the playground games included in the show.

Kids playing a game that results in them beating each other up is an absolute no go, but I do like the idea of children’s games seeping back into our lives.

I have vivid memories of playing Pokémon as a kid, when we threw rocks and mud at each other as an attack, but I have no need to play that again. But other games? I’d be interested. Tag, British Bulldogs, massive games of hide and seek, why not?

When the weather improves, and we all get to go outside, I think I’d be ok with regressing to some playground games.

So here’s the nostalgia trip I want you to join me on. What’s a game from your childhood you would love to play right now? Let @johnstonjules know.

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1. Employers furious about Belgium’s abolition of one-day sick notes

Belgium’s decision to get rid of the sick notes for a one-day absence, effectively making it possible for employees to take a sick day without a doctor’s note, is absolutely not a good idea, says employers’ organisation VBO. Read more.

2. Plant-based makeup? Flanders wants to give it a shot

Photo by ThisisEngineering RAEng on Unsplash

A new project backed by European funding is conducting research into the possibility of creating cosmetics based on raw vegetable material produced and harvested in a high-tech manner. Here’s how.

3. Investigation launched into allegations of sexual assault in bars in Ixelles

The Brussels public prosecutors office has confirmed that an investigation has been launched into allegations of sexual assault in the Cimetière d’Ixelles district of Brussels. Read more.

4. Auctioning off new students during ‘baptism’ abolished in Leuven

The so-called “schachtenverkoop” – literally translated from Dutch as “shaft sales” – involves a new student being sold to the member of the associations who put in the highest bid, temporarily giving them a right of ownership, however, this will not be part of the “baptism” process, as is stated in the city’s new baptismal charter. Read More.

5. Brussels to open large ‘risk reduction space’ for drug users at Tour & Taxis

The Brussels-Capital Region will build a large integrated “risk reduction space” for drug users – also called fixing rooms – in the canal neighbourhood, right opposite Tour and Taxis, by 2026. Read more.

6. Real life ‘Squid Game’ held on Antwerp high street

A Belgian Youtuber is the latest person to jump on the Squid Game bandwagon with his version of the card game ddakji, a children’s game that plays a prominent role in the Netflix sensation. Read more.

7. Eurostar will operate extra trains during the Christmas period

Additional Eurostar trains will run between London and mainland Europe over the Christmas period in response to increasing demand, the company announced on Tuesday. Read more.

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