"Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and the Sultan of Johor are seen in a blue Proton Saga... "When asked whether there is any tension with the sultan, Dr Mahathir said: “No, I don’t see anything because I went to see him and he drove me to the airport. I don’t want to comment on the sultans because if I say anything that is not good then it’s not nice because he is the sultan”"

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Saturday, April 20, 2002

The word of the day is "preterit"

Yesterday, Silent bought it in a motorcycle accident on his way to a Dikir Barat cultural show. As he took his motorcycle along a hairpin turn at approx 100km/hr, he slid off and the bike landed on his thigh, fricasseeing it. Apparently, he's on accident leave for a month or so, and it's unlikely he'll regain full bipedal mobility, according to the other guard.

His replacement is Clarence, a Dyak Catholic from one of the quasi-government-reserved areas for the indigenous East Malaysians. When I entered the branch on Thursday morning, he was seated in front of the storeroom casually reloading his pump-action Remington shotgun with 12 gauge buckshot. It's one of those old style shotguns where you reload from under the breech, and manually pump it into the chamber. No auto or semiauto unlike the lovely Franchi SPAS 15. While lugging a new shipment of signature specimen cards into the room, I paused, examined one of the rounds, with all their nasty buckshot pellets being a promise of excruciating pain - and asked: "How many rounds does the shotgun hold?"

(In Malay) "Five."

"What do you do if there are six robbers?"

"Reload."

The conversation ended abruptly there.

Coda: "Whenever playing Cowboys and Indians, I was always the Chinese railroad worker."
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