Sunday 19 April 2009

I found a dead body and all I did was update my Facebook

This happened last Sunday night – or to be more precise, 2:30am Monday morning. Because of how late it was, there was no one else around.

I was on my way home from work when I spotted someone lying face up on the pavement below my flat.

To my horror, it turned out to be the body of a dead woman with blood still flowing from the back of her head. Well, at least she didn’t have to worry about the recession and unhygienic hawkers anymore.

I took out my handphone – not to take pictures because I didn’t have a camera phone, but to call the police.

Unfortunately, for the life of me, I couldn’t remember the number. Could you blame me, considering the circumstances? I had never had to call the police for anything before.

I thought the number couldn’t possibly be triple nine because that was the name of a TV show. (The number is 999, I found out later.)

995? Wasn’t that for the ambulance? A little bit too late for that now.

I wanted to try 911, but wasn’t that another TV show starring William Shatner?

So there I was – standing over the body, staring at my phone and contemplating what digits to dial when some guy I didn’t see earlier called out to me and said he had already contacted the police.

Oh. Okay.

I was relieved – and somewhat disappointed.

This was the most exciting thing that had happened to me since the opening of Yew Tee Point and it was over just like that.

What was I supposed to do now?

Nothing, except go home and go to bed.

But I didn’t want to go to sleep with the dead woman as the last image in my mind.
So I turned on the computer to update my Facebook status: SM Ong “just returned from work to find a fresh dead body at the foot of my apartment block”.

(I didn’t tweet it because I have zero Twitter followers.)

Then I went to sleep.

But not before looking out my window to see that the police had indeed arrived and was doing whatever they did in situations like this.

When I woke up the next morning, the police and the body were gone.

As I was taking my daughter to her primary school, I pointed out to her where the body had been. Flies were staking out the remaining blood stain.

My daughter said she was going to tell all her friends at school that her daddy had found a dead body.

I felt so proud.

- Published in The New Paper, 19 April 2009