April 29, 2017

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illustration of police report.

by Felix Cheong

It seems like Singaporeans have found themselves a new pastime – filing police reports. The past week alone saw two police reports filed against former Nominated MP Calvin Cheng, for incitement to violence. Add to that police reports filed against Amos Yee earlier this year, filed by National Solidarity Party, and another by Workers Party candidate Daniel Goh during GE2015 and so on, and it seems like our boys in blue have no time to nab criminals but spend their days attending to people with grievances to air.

In the satirical story below, writer Felix Cheong speculates what would happen if we took this habit too far.

 

To cater to Singaporeans’ increasing urge to file police reports, for big matters or trivial pursuits that take place at home or in the office, there will be a new assessment component in this year’s GCE ‘O’ level English paper.

Designed by Cambridge especially for the local market, the ‘Filing a Police Report’ component is worth twenty percent of the overall grade.

Students are expected to imagine themselves sitting in a freezing neighbourhood police post, armed with a pen and a heavy dose of grievance, facing a police corporal at the end of his long shift. Students are to write a clear, coherent report based on vague facts.

They may choose from one of the following scenarios:

– A mother who cannot control her son with a bad haircut
– A blogger whose ego is two sizes too big for her head, complaining about another blogger whose mouth is two sizes too big for her face
– A politician complaining about another politician complaining about another politician complaining about the first politician

Students have forty minutes to complete the task. They will be assessed on how they sequence events such that they appear so aggrieved, pained or fearful that a police report is deemed a civic necessity.

A separate component, ‘Writing a Petition’, is currently being planned by Cambridge and is expected to be implemented next year.

 

Felix Cheong is an award-winning author of 10 books, including the satirical Singapore Siu Dai series.

 

Featured image by Najeer Yusof.

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by Felix Cheong

TRANSPORT Minister Khaw Boon Wan said on Friday the Land Transport Authority will beef up its engineering team in case it needs to take over the operation and maintenance of the national rail system. Where once the Government ceded ownership of public utilities to market forces, it now recognises an integrated system might be better.

In this satirical poem, Felix Cheong sees this move as part of the Government’s cha-cha-cha dance.

 

You must learn the G cha-cha-cha.

Like nine years’ COE on your car,

You might not go very far.

But keep up and you’ll be a star.

 

First, wear your G-issued flip-flops,

Those that once didn’t lend you support,

Expecting you to rely on yourself or Pop,

And see your MP only as last resort.

 

Suddenly, the G cha-cha-chas left,

Still baby moves because of its heft.

Distributing grants till you’re out of breath

By the many red tape dance steps.

 

Watch the G give dialects the kick,

As uncool for a country that ticks.

Off the airwaves and TV flicks,

Too bad if Mandarin on old folks didn’t stick.

 

Suddenly, the G cha-cha-chas to Hokkien vintage

To hard-sell its Pioneer G package.

The turnaround shows even language

Makes room for a political advantage.

 

Once the G swayed to the sexy refrain

That market forces should reign.

Now, it plans to take the train

Maybe from private to public domain.

 

What goes around comes in time round

To the same steps marking the ground.

Nothing is new but what is found

Are circles that are perfectly sound.

 

Felix Cheong is an award-winning author of 10 books, including the satirical Singapore Siu Dai series.

 

Featured image Dancing feet by Flickr user John JonesCC BY-ND 2.0.

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by Felix Cheong

AFFLUENTIAL, a firm specialising in tracking the spending patterns of affluent Singaporeans, has just published its latest study. Not surprisingly, most high-net-worth people put their money where their Prada is – in luxury goods.

In this satirical poem, writer Felix Cheong sums up a day in the life of such an affluent person.

 

The Nouveau Riche’s Life in One Day

Sun your Ray-Ban
By the bank

Line your Versace
In the sand

Match your Vuitton
With your tan

Flash your Cartier
On your hand

Walk your Armani
Like a man

Pose your Prada
With the band

Show your Chanel
To the fans

Give your Gucci
One big clap

Raise your Regal
All is grand

Down your Martell
With a bang

Crash your BM
Like a ram

Hear your Sentence
In the stand

Strut your Bata
In the can

 

– Felix Cheong is the author of 10 books, including the satirical Singapore Siu Dai series.

 

Featured image BMW i8 by Flickr user Falcon® Photography, CC BY-SA 2.0.

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