Fri, Dec 22, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Lu tries to encourage whiz kids

WORDS OF WISDOM Congratulating the winners of a recent competition, Lu warned that their success now was no guarantee of greatness in the future

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

Vice President Annette Lu, right, talks during a meeting with Ryu Min-joo, the South Korean author of a book about Lu entitled ''Daughter of the World,'' which is scheduled to hit the shelves tomorrow. Ryu is also the author of the Korean epic TV drama ''Jewel in the Palace,'' which was a blockbuster when it aired in Taiwan.

PHOTO: LIU HSIN-DE, TAIPEI TIMES

Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) yesterday inadvertently made a discouraging remark to a group of children when she received win-ners of this year's International Mathematics and Science Olympiad competition.

Lu, who was supposed to offer words of encouragement to win-ners of the Olympiad for elementary school students, used a teasing Chinese saying, telling the young guests: "You are intelligent in your childhood, but you may not be great when you grow up."

Taiwan won three gold medals, three silver and one bronze in this year's Olympiad, held in Jakarta, Indonesia.

"You won the competition today, but you have to do better next year," she said. "Remember, the waves behind drive on those before. This is a small step for you and there are more lying ahead. If you succeed, it will be the success of the country and Taiwan."

Lu told the youngsters that she envied them because they could travel abroad at such a young age and admired them for winning so many medals.

"When I was your age, my family was so poor that I walked bare-foot. I did not have my first pair of leather shoes until I was 12," she said.

"Most people were poor back then. It may sound ridiculous to you, but we had to carry our own chairs to school because there were so few of them," Lu said.

Lu thanked her parents for letting her attend school and said that when she absorbed herself in reading, "knowledge makes me realize I am not a great person and sometimes makes me forget that I am a woman."

In a separate event yesterday, Lu met with a Korean writer who had penned a book about her.

The book, Daughter of the World, was released in July and its Chinese translation is scheduled to hit the shelves tomorrow.

The publisher is planning to translate the book into Japanese and English. The publisher also hopes to see the book turned into a movie.

Ryu Min-joo, the author of the Korean blockbuster TV epic drama Jewel in the Palace (大長今), was invited by Lu to the Presidential Office to talk about her new novel, which is based on Lu's life story.

When Lu was asked which Taiwanese actress should play her in a movie version, she said she would make a perfect candidate herself.

"It sounds like a pretty good job for me after I finish my term in office on May 20, 2008," she said.

While the book was about Lu's life before she became the nation's first female vice president, Lu said that she was thinking of writing a book about her vice presidency after she retires.

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