So last week I finished A Civil Action, and then my Mom gave me a book she'd just read for a social work class. It's about Hmong refugees and their experiences in America. It ain't pretty. The Hmong haven't taken too well to America. This lifestyle is just not their thing. And, unlike Jews who began the major work of assimilation back in the 1700's in Europe, the Hmong never did have any plans or movements or desire to assimilate into their host countries, not for millennia. So, at least as far as I can tell, this America thing is transitory for them, at the moment. But of course, by the time I've read the book and written this, a generation of English speaking kids is probably wondering what mud hut their parents grew up in and feeling sorry for that. In another generation it will be interesting to see how much of their culture remains intact, how much adapts, and how much is lost outright.