053 Stuck...

Really, I am sort of stuck in front of the computer, or rather my laptop, on a chair, with a bandaged foot that hurts quite badly. I went to a dermatologist this morning and then to an orthopedic to get something done about a corn on my foot, and it ended up getting surgically removed. Luckily for me, I can't see my own foot and watch all the drama that was going on at the other end of my body, but to put it rather subtly, a mop was needed to clean the blood that was shed. Anyway, I spent the rest of the day on this chair in the study room in front of my laptop typing out my KI independent study, playing games, writing on quantum physics (which were the two previous entries), and now blogging. This is as exciting as life can get for now.

My sole still hurts now but after taking the painkiller, it's not so bad now. Trying to relax, but my posterior really hurts quite a bit too, from all that sitting. So, now what? My quantum physics entry got me occupied for quite a bit, and now I'm blogging while watching the tennis semi-finals scores at Roland Garros. Life has been kind, at least now I can settle down concentrate on my Independent Study (IS), instead of running around. If only it doesn't hurt so much...

What should I write about now? Hmm... ah yes, about Singapore, why not? My favourite topic. It is question of identity. You know, this question dates back a long time ago, to the GP introductory lecture by Mr. Leong, what is the Singaporean Identity? Well, I was faced with this question time and again while reading articles on Singapore. Well, the Malaysians love to say is kiasuism, and I think the Singaporeans acknowledge it without any protest, but the Gahment is not too happy about it. Well, the Gahment was always never too happy about the locals' humour. But seriously, what do they consider their national identity? The Merlion...hmm...close but no cigar...well I find it hard to comprehend how anyone can relate to a fictitious half-creature made up by the Tourism Board to woo tourists, followed by the erection of several statues. Any other possibilities… buildings, frankly if you’re looking for a Petronas Twin Towers or Big Ben, you won’t find any, I can’t name any famous Singaporean building that is known world-wide. Natural beauty is definitely out of the list, and we are running out of options. Food and culture is a good candidate, definitely, but I cannot see anything that stands out. Want Chinese culture? Go to China. Want Malay handicrafts? Then try Malaysia. Want Indian food? India has far better food, not in terms of cleanliness but in terms of variety and taste.

But then again, Singaporeans may be becoming an endangered species, with the intake rate of foreigners being nearly equal to the birth rate, and since the rate of the former seem to be rising while the latter is decreasing. So, is the need for an identity becoming more urgent or otherwise? I sincerely hope it is the former, but at the rate it’s going, I think it’s going nowhere. Fine, build a casino; make Singapore famous as a South-East Asian Macau, but will Singaporeans be gratified for being identified as hosts to activities some consider to be a vice? Or is it just a magnificent show of how materialistic Singaporeans have become? Definitely an important consideration for the Gahmen. Speaking of the Gahmen, I think there is one virtue of Singapore that she are somewhat famous for. That sterile, authoritarian atmosphere that anyone coming to Singapore would remember for the rest of his or her lives. Those spotless streets, law-abiding citizens and perpetually efficient transportation system is sure to leave a mark on any visitor. Sure, that would make a wonderful identity, unique I must say, but it is not something I would like to promote about my country

Ah, but there is one thing I think that Singaporeans can be proud of, their humour and satire. I don’t think there is any one government whose every policy becomes the butt of everyone’s joke, perhaps America comes close, but that is only restricted to the stupidity of their president. I must say, Singaporean humour is one of the best in the world, the way they creatively twist the confinements of their government to a joke. Perhaps it is retaliation to constriction, a knee-jerk reaction, you might say, to all the rules that have been imposed onto them. Such gusto is much appreciated by the citizen and not so much by the government, but I believe it provides a welcome relief to the otherwise mundane, sterile life that the government has imposed. It is also an identity to be proud of. Singlish is another such example, with all the humour and uniqueness associated with the language, although one may not want to use it elsewhere, it is definitely something “Uniquely Singaporean”.