Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Singapore: Best Place in the World to be Singaporean.

Today I want to talk about home. Yes, perhaps I'm a little home sick. Yes, perhaps it's been too long since I've had mee siam. Yes, perhaps I've been reading blogs of chiobus like Celly (who now even kena brown-ed), Sandra Ng (who looks damn spicy in her bikini) and of course our evergreen Cheng Yan Yan and thinking, wah, back home really got a lot of hot babes, man. Maybe I've just been thinking about Singapore since I started reading so many Singaporean blogs.

Nonetheless, I just want to say how, to be fair, Singapore is a pretty cool place. While bitching about the status quo seems to be a big pasttime amongst the Singaporean community, I figure that, deep down inside, SIngaporeans are deeply proud of who they are and where they come from. I've always thought that countries have global brand names - you know, people think Japan and think pokemon, sushi, love hotels and banzai; people think Korea and maybe think about Winter Sonata, bibimbap and I don't know, Tae Kwon Do. You think USA and you have cowboys and MacDonalds and silly things like that. What, however, do people think of when they think of Singapore? I'm sure Singaporeans studying abroad are kind of sick of questions like, 'I hear Singapore is really strict; you can't chew gum there, right?' or 'is it true that they cane you in Singapore for littering?'

At first, when confronted with such ignorance, I got really pissed off. I figured, if everyone was so ignorant, why not let them continue being a bunch of stupid buffoons. Laughing at buffoons is funny. It makes me feel good. Conversations would go like this:

Random dude: So, I hear they cane you in Singapore for littering.
Me: No, they don't.
Random: Really? I thought so.
Me: Yeah, they strip you naked and shackle you in public so everyone can laugh at the size of your dick.
Random: No, you're shitting me.
Me: Actually I am. Everyone knows Asians like to castrate people. That's what they do.
Random: Really? Harsh.
Me: We don't f*ck around, us SIngaporeans.

Eventually, though, I learnt that you can't really blame ignorance on the ignorant, as much as I'd like to. There comes a time when you think to yourself, enough is enough. Now, when people ask me stupid questions about Singapore, I've learnt to try and shamelessly promote my country, point out things that are good about it. Look at places like Jamaica. While they're a piss-small island, everyone thinks Jamaica and at least goes, 'yah man...rasta' or some nonsense like that. Singapore, with all its quirks, needs to be promoted. I dream of the day when every ang moh thinks Singapore and goes, 'eh dun be liddat leh,' or perhaps, 'kao peh lah cheebye!'



Yes, like that.

How will this happen? Well, first, it's time to spread Singlish. I think that, all things told, Singlish is an awesome representation of our culture. I know, it's annoying to hear white people who don't know where their lahs and lehs go saying stupid things. But hey, to promote awareness, you first must make people aware, right? A lot of my white friends have taken to saying 'cheebye'; I know, it's not the most polite phrase to teach people. This probably came about because I don't like saying cheese.

White dudes: Say cheese!
Me: Cheese simi lan! Cheebye lah, cheese!
White dudes: What?
Me: You say cheese, I say cheebye.
White: Is cheebye Singaporean for cheese?
Me: No, cheebye is Hokkien for vagina.

Nonetheless, they still seem to say it exclusively when we take pictures.



Slowly, though, my white friends have moved beyond cheebye. Some even know when lah should and should not be said (ok, maybe roughly only, but still can lah). One day, perhaps these people will learn enough Singlish to understand two Singaporeans talking (which many of my white friends say is completely unintelligible).

One day, I think maybe Singaporean will be as imitated as those Jamaican slangs, if all us Singaporean bloggers unite and make our presence felt on the blogging community. I think the Singaporean blogging scene is coming along quite nicely - a lot of people have, to my surprise, proved intensely readable. All we need is to get global readership, and proliferate our cultrue.

I know, some might be saying, why proliferate our culture?

Well, it's better than hamburgers, don't you think? I figure it's time us Singaporean minds get together to make our presence felt. We're a small island, but we have a distinct culture and a burgeoning, uniquely Singaporean sense of humour. Singlish is more than just a blend of disparate languages; there's a distinctive discourse in Singlish. Look at the hokkien words that are incorporated, which in turn have been borrowed from Malay - I'm talking about how ah bengs say 'su ka' for like, 'ba lu' for new and talk about how they 'beh tahan' the weather. Anyone who has heard a Malay friend say 'kao peh lah!' will see that our tongues have blended together, making something unique and special (ok, maybe Malaysia also can understand, as can be seen from this hokkien blog, which I've recently gotten addicted to, but whatever), something which should be shared with the rest of the world.

Yeah, so it's time for us to start speaking Singlish, and letting everyone else catch on. It'll be good exercise for their brains anyway, hor?

21 Comments:

Blogger Shion spewed forth...

Merging few languages and dialect into one : We Fucking Rock !

6/4/05 01:29  
Anonymous SugarRush spewed forth...

Haha...it's so true that the 1st thing foreigners would ask about sg is the 'chewing gum' thing. Very sianzz -__-"

6/4/05 02:14  
Blogger xander spewed forth...

awaiting the day whites say "fucks ya lor" instead of fucks yeah.

my classmates from north shore once pretended to cane me with a stalk of leaf, all because of the dumb michael fay shhiit. the fools. i prolly was a minority of one in the winnetka school district back in the day.
represent singapore, fucks ya lor!

eh bigfuck, which school you go to in chytown?

6/4/05 02:45  
Anonymous hong jun spewed forth...

tat sandra girl is hotttttttttt!

6/4/05 04:28  
Blogger jllt spewed forth...

We are Singapore, we are Singapore. We will stand together hear the lion roar.

First, we need to come up with a Singlish national song.

Then we have to stop all the shit about banning Singlish and dialects on free-to-air TV.

Local beauties should use the latest make up when joining international pageants and not be subjected to lousy make-up artists who stereotype Asians and use those 80's purple eyeshadow. (Look at Bernice Wong in Miss Universe! They disfigured her!)

And we should set up an academy teaching Singlish to people going overseas for studies/work so they can proliferate the slang.

Now, what to eat for dinner? Laksa, mee siam, chicken rice, fried kuay teow, roti prata, bak kut teh, kuay chup, mee soto, thosai...

6/4/05 06:59  
Blogger ~Mav'RiCk~ spewed forth...

Hey there dude. Rock on. I finally got about to linking you. Heh.

Anyway, that's the way brudder. Show those guys the proper way to speak Singlish. They could learn a thing or two, hor?

Fucks yah lor!

6/4/05 10:02  
Blogger CELLE spewed forth...

once the angmohs have mastered basic singlish . they can upgrade to our lovely abbreviations..
KNN, CCB,KNS, TMD!!!

ROCK ON SINGRISH!!

6/4/05 10:28  
Blogger CELLE spewed forth...

btw.. a suggestion..
maybe shd start a i am too singrish for my blog campaign to stress the importance and glorify it further!

6/4/05 10:41  
Blogger sunflowr spewed forth...

I totally agree. When I was studying in Europe, I get so many f*ing questions about singapore - and its all about stupid gum, caning and rules. They think there's like policeman on every corner of every damn street. SO IRRITATING. SO IGNORANT. Once, I even explained to this guy that actually singaporeans are fine with not chewing gum, and he laughed, and I was damn pissed off. Let's all talk damn fast in singlish next time siah and they will soon beg to learn our beautiful lahs and lors.

6/4/05 11:11  
Blogger Jazz spewed forth...

The "Wah Lau Eh" picture reminds me of that Jack Neo film, I Do I Do. -.-

6/4/05 11:27  
Blogger Kenny Sia spewed forth...

Dudeeeeeee... you bear an uncanny resemblance to David Tao!

That's quite unfortunate.

Just kidding. :)

Seriously though, Singlish is Singapore's cultural identity. I reckon Singlish is as Singapore as the Merlion, and to lose it would be a national disgrace. Nothing more fun than to talk in Singlish in front of those confused angmohs looking on.

But I'm not a Simkarpo ren.

6/4/05 12:12  
Blogger bryan spewed forth...

waaaah that hokkien blog was so funny! thanks.

6/4/05 13:20  
Blogger eva spewed forth...

I THINK US SINGAPOREANS KICK SERIOUS ASS.

6/4/05 13:39  
Blogger Ah 9 spewed forth...

li tiong kim kai siao yi eh hokkien blog si beh zai ah! tak liao cheo kah peng! knn...hokkien keyboard....wa si si ai pang wa eh blog loll liao! hahahaa

6/4/05 15:06  
Blogger TriplePeriod spewed forth...

Excerpt...

...Yes, perhaps I've been reading blogs of chiobus like Celly (who now even kena brown-ed), Sandra Ng (who looks damn spicy in her bikini) and of course our evergreen Cheng Yan Yan...

In Blogo-terms, these blogs have just been "screwed by Big Fuck"... hahaha. Pardon my lame sense of humour.

6/4/05 21:30  
Blogger NaiveGuy spewed forth...

Hmm to be screwed by big fuck...maybe you got some thing after all, since Mr Big Fuck here is getting popular anyway :)

6/4/05 22:09  
Blogger J Schnorng spewed forth...

Shion: Of course we rock lah. Abutden?

Suggarush: Damn foreigners, make people sian only, right? Haiz.

lx: Damn Michael Fay. I damn can't stand that little cunty ho. I wish they'd have anally raped him in prison or something, seeing as to how big of a fuss he's caused. Little shit. Anyway, I go to the University of Chicago. It's ok, lah, not bad.

hong jun: Told you right, she's a chiobu. If I were in Singapore now I would surely sian her, except she's probably out of my league. Sian.

T: Yeah, Singlish national song ... hopefully they wouldn't get one of those no talent hacks to make it. All the latest national songs have been kind of sucky. What happened to the guys who wrote the old school ones? They were damn good, leh! Count on Me Singapore, Stand Up for Singapore - I can't get those tunes out of my head. I bet I could write the lyrics for a national song. Maybe I'll try it on my blog some day. As for the food, I resent your choice of cuisine. Damn you.

Mav: Thanks for the link man! Using my button some more! I'd read your site but your font is a little too small. Play with the settings?

Celle: Life is all about upgrade. It's true. Oh, by the way, I was reading your blog today while my friend was over drinking, and he was, like 'HOLY SHIT WHO'S THIS BABE!' and I was, like, 'oh, some Singaporean girl' and he was, like, "HOLY SHIT SHE'S A TOTAL BABE'. It's official, babe, you're a babe.

Sunflowr: Yeah, foreigners are really annoying some times. That's why. Education is necessary, hor?

Jazz: I need to see more Jack Neo films leh - sometimes I get homesick.

Kenny: I don't mind people saying I look like David Tao, better than people saying I look like Hossan Leong, right? I know, you're Malaysian, and your blog is cool. But you probably know I think that from the comments I leave there, so whatever.

Bryan: Yalor, the hokkien blog sibeh steady leh! Wa siu wa ma ai sia hokkien blog entry liao la! Hokkient Leplesent! Staylee!

Satirist: ME TOO. SORT OF. FUCKING CAPS LOCK.

ah 9: wa kua dio ee ma add lu zo ee eh member! Lu sibeh steady leh! Wah nang si hokkien member buddy liao! Steady!

...: Donaq had a post about that. Yes, they've all been fucked. How I wish they were fucked in some other way... Oh, wait, everyone can see these comments. I deny all charges...but yeah, they're damn hot, hor? Haiz...

Naiveguy: One day I will be popular, I can feel it. I have a plan, but it's secret. Sweet!

7/4/05 03:53  
Anonymous fl4mers (flaming.katana@gmail.com) spewed forth...

hahaha... had a good time readin this blog entry... I have to admit i'm one of those ignorant white ppl tho... and yes one of t first things i did ask when i first met my singaporean friend far was... u rly can't chew gum??? n i even asked him whether u guys eat cereal! but hey to our white ass's defence... they rly dun say much about singapore over here in europe! Neways i'm gonna b goin to singapore 4 da first time in 2 days time so who knows.. might b able to come back with a few singlish words and help u spread t word ;) xxx

1/6/05 10:57  
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