30 August 2015

Election fever: What should I say to my MP if he comes a-calling

Doctor, doctor, I need an MC.

Check my temperature.

It’s SG50 degrees. I think I have election fever.

Which is similar to Saturday Night Fever except Polling Day is on a Friday and the soundtrack is getai music. No Bee Gees.

I wanted to start this column with a surprise appearance by Kit Chan singing Home, but I couldn’t find the minus-one track.

So Tosh Zhang will be rapping Lingo Lingo instead. Feel free to stand up and rap along if you’re swept up in the moment, blocking the view of the annoyed people behind you. #StyloMilo.

Even before Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s National Day Rally speech last Sunday, the election has been all that everyone is talking about. (Well, that and the sinking ringgit.)

Polling Day will be on the 14th anniversary of 9/11. The alternative was to have Polling Day on the 74th anniversary of Pearl Harbour, but that’s in December and too close to Christmas.

Parliament was dissolved on Tuesday like an Eno tablet in a glass of water, which explains the amount of hot gas coming out of politicians in recent days.

But my wife needs Panadol and not Eno as it appears she has the fever too. She is oddly excited about the election. What she’s looking forward to is our Member of Parliament visiting our block to win our votes because there are things she wants to say to him.

I’m not even sure he’ll ever visit our block as we’ve lived there for 17 years and never seen our MP in person.

But my wife believes that he has to visit us because of the election and is worried that she might not be home when he does. She even made me promise to tell the MP what she wants to tell him in case I get to meet him and she doesn’t.

So what’s this earth-shaking thing my wife wants me to tell the MP that’s so important?

Is it to reduce the number of foreign workers in Singapore? Return our CPF? Fire the Transport Minister. Oh, wait, he already quit.

No, what my wife wants me to tell the MP is to get our lift fixed.


You see, one of the lifts in our block sometimes doesn’t close properly the first time when you board it on the first storey. It will open and close again a few times before it finally goes up. It doesn’t happen all the time, but it can be very irritating when it does.

It irritates my wife enough that it’s the one thing she wants me to tell the MP during his improbable block visit.

I asked her if she had called the town council. She said she had given up on the town council after the otak man incident. (See my column from a year ago.)

I said I’m not going to squander my time with the MP by complaining about the lift. That’s just dumb.

Quick lesson here: Never call anything your wife says “dumb”.

She retorted angrily: “Then what are you going to say when he asks you if we have any problems?”

Uh... I had to think about that.

Hmmm, what should you say to your MP when you’re given the chance? You don’t want to be frivolous or over-demanding. You also don’t want to sound dumb.

Since my MP, Mr Alex Yam, is just an MP and not a minister, I shouldn’t ask for anything on the national level, like, say, a ban on public burning.

I should just ask for something more related to our constituency.

Okay, since I live in Choa Chu Kang, I wish the Government would standardise the spelling of “Choa Chu Kang” and not spell it “Chua Chu Kang” sometimes. It’s confusing.

But the thing is, I won’t be part of the Chua Chu Kang GRC (note the spelling) for much longer as my Yew Tee area has been gerrymandered, I mean, redrawn into the newly-formed Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC with Mr Yam remaining as my MP.

I know!

If I see him, I would tell him to get the GRC name changed to Yew Tee-Marsiling GRC because Yew Tee must always come first.

Only then, he’ll get my vote.

That’s how deep my love for Bee Gees), I mean, Yew Tee is.

That’s dumb, my wife said.

Hey, it’s election time. Anything is possible.

Or maybe it’s the fever talking.

Where’s my MC?

- Published in The New Paper, 30 August 2015

27 August 2015

Get your nomination papers – and your 15 minutes (An Uber driver? Really?)

Is this what Andy Warhol had in mind?

#GE2015: Another independent candidate? Retired businessman Tan Peng Hai, 66, was at the Elections Department this...
Posted by The Straits Times on Wednesday, August 26, 2015

AT THE ELECTIONS DEPARTMENT: A man is spotted collecting nominations forms for a GRC. He declined to speak to the...
Posted by TODAY on Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Independent hopefuls arrived at the Elections Department this morning to pick up a nomination form.Uber driver Shirwin...
Posted by TODAY on Tuesday, August 25, 2015

HAPPENING NOW: 32-year-old Uber driver Shirwin Eu, who plans to contest in Bukit Panjang SMC, says his strength is in...
Posted by The Straits Times on Tuesday, August 25, 2015

If you want your own 15 minutes, here is where to go:

24 August 2015

Shiver! See PAP candidate Darryl David as an actor back in the cringey 90s

What I find amusing about Darryl David becoming a PAP candidate recently is not just that he was a TV personality, but for the first time, a PAP candidate is someone I've actually worked with before.

Most people know him as a host of The Pyramid Game, but because he was a full-time MediaCorp "artiste" at the time, the company couldn't just let him host one lousy game show. It had to get its money's worth.

So MediaCorp made him act.

The first TV series I worked as a scriptwriter for was Shiver in 1997. I wrote eight out of the 30 episodes.

And David appeared in three of them that I wrote.

So in a way, you can say that Darryl David is the Leonardo DiCaprio to my Martin Scorsese. (Not really.)

I also had small roles in the episodes I wrote, which was how I got to be in a scene with the future PAP candidate once.

That's me at the back.

Fortuitously, I just discovered that Shiver is now available for streaming on the MediaCorp website, Toggle.

So here is the episode, called The Lift, in full. (Video may not work on mobile.)

The interesting casting choice in this episode is that David's mother is Chinese, which reflects real life, but the actress playing his wife is not.

Another episode, called Miss Singapore, is the first script I ever wrote. In it, David plays a photographer opposite Jamie Lee. 'Memba her?

Here is the episode in full.

In the episode called Inside, David appears alive briefly in the beginning but is a corpse for most of the episode. As an additional bonus, the episode also features Tan Kheng Hua in a rather skimpy costume.

Here is the episode in full.

Before Shiver, David was a regular cast member in the sitcom Happy Belly. I wasn't involved in that and I can't find it on Toggle.

Like his marriage to Georgina Chang, David's acting career is something no one talks about now.

You can see why.

EARLIER: Shiver me timbers! It's back from the dead!


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