"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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Sunday, May 04, 2003

I've noticed that Beniah is becoming more and more like the recently ORD-ed Tse Ling, so I've taken to calling him 'Beniah Tan Tse Ling', a term which evidently induces great displeasure in him, as can be seen from his renewed attempts to poke me vigorously. Among other things, he wears Long 4 more often now (where Tse Ling wore Half 4 - with the sleeves stretching to his elbow), sleeps a lot in the Dispensary Chair (TM), has a lot of stubble and gained some weight and looks shagged all the time. He even has a slight drawl to his words now!

Our CSM got upset when he came one day at 6:30am, after not having done so for a while, and caught many people still sleeping in the bunks. Now, we have to fall in at 6:15am in uniform to go to breakfast all together. This leads to queues not seen since BMT! Among other things.

I bought some lavender potpourri for my cupboard in bunk. Maybe it will get rid of the musty smell.

2 of our former AC kids are very disappointing. Jonathan has hair which is uncombed and is sprawled across his head, resembling Big Bird's hairdo, which is why some call him that. Wang, on the other hand, had this cock hairstyle which could be described as a "roundhead" cut - his hair is cut in an arc from somewhere on the middle of his head across to his fringe, and is short enough to be prickly, but still somewhat soft. To think they come from the proud AC line! Tut tut. I don't expect spiky hair, but this is really letting down the ghost of Old Ham. Or whatever his name was.

My 'give people who call me "Jiabao" names campaign' has kicked off. First up is dear Guoquan, who gets the prize of 'Cesspit'. Sinsiang is next, with the new name of 'Bob' and rounding up the list is Derrick, who has earned the name of 'George'. Damn. Now I need new names.

More Army recruitment posters!

"Who causes mental atrophy?" - This will be accompanied by a picture of the awful sign which came up near ATC last year. "ATC celebrates Sinagapore 37th birthday"

"Who causes injuries in the pursuit of nebulous, unnecessary goals?" - Above this will be a picture of a guy with a number tag (ala IPPT), with his ankle twisted at an unnatural angle, and a look of indescribable agony on his face.

"Who wastes your time?" - Below will be a shot of Temporary Support Staff (or other suitable minions) doing the most mindless sort of Saikang or Area Cleaning. Swarming grassed slopes and sweeping dead leaves from them, from example. Or doing rubbish (literally, even, like Yours Truly) for NDP. Or painting signs.

We were recently shipped some copies of a book: "The SAF Medical Corps... Our Heritage, Our Pride, Our Commitment". The disclaimer is very amusing: "The opinions expressed in this book are solely those of the authors and editors and does (sic) not reflect the view of the Singapore Armed Forces Medical Corps and/or the Singapore Armed Forces". This despite it being published by the SAF MC, and being authored/edited by some senior officers, including a Colonel (if my memory serves me well) Hah, maybe I should adopt that disclaimer for my blog. It goes on to read: "Any resemblance, however remote, to any mannerisms, personalities or fictitious characters described in this book is purely coincidential", which is a most odd disclaimer not only in phrasing but also in language and content (this oddness in language is visible in other parts of the book too), especially since the events described all seem to be true.

Interesting facts:
- The new SAF MC building took almost 10 years to build. This is said to show the hard work put in. Strangely enough, most people would see that as inefficiency...
- The opening day of the new building was "cooled by 2 short episodes of passing showers". Read: "the event was ruined by 2 miserable downpours"

One part of the book tells of how the Medic song came to be. I prefer the original lyrics, composed in the 60s. Dumbing down is evil!

Original Lyrics of "Medics of the Field":

"The nation called as need arose for stations in the field
To treat the wounded and the ill, the brave and imperilled
First seasoned stalwarts pioneered, then hundreds joined this band
Ere long a new cry could be heard a-ringing through the land

We are they who joined, the medics of the field
We serve the wounded, sick and maimed, the brave who will not yield
Our sword the scalpel, staff - our shield, and these with skill we wield
No matter when, we're battle-ready, Medics of the Field!"

I was at Khatib Camp on Saturday to cover a rehearsal for NDP 2003. Basically, all the RSMs and CSMs were training the civilians and kiddies up in their drill, but unfortunately, they weren't allowed to shout too loudly or knock them down, so I think some of them felt frustrated.

Perhaps it was too early in the rehearsal schedule, so only one song was available for the people to march to - a most jingoistic song, part of the lyrics to which went "We're the pride of our nation... In the SAF we're proud to be. It's our duty. It's our honour to serve..." Ugh.

Under the tentage, it was both hot and humid after a downpour, and mental slowdown ensued while many of us became sluggish or fell asleep.

There was one man in the PAP contingent wearing an NDP 2002 Polo Shirt - apparently he was unlucky enough to be chosen to participate again this year!

The PAP, NTUC and Singtel groups all talked and fidgeted less than the Girls Brigade group. Some uniform group. Humph!

At the end, I was roped in to take the temperatures of the participants with ear thermometers. Now, as we all know, ear thermometers tend to give abnormally low temperature readings. I attribute this to several factors:

- Some people have small years (especially the Secondary School girls)
- Some people cringe when their temperature is taken (especially the younger females, read: Secondary school girls, some of whom look as if they're going to cry)
- The alcohol used to clean the sheath does not have a chance to dry. But then with a queue stretching as far as the eye can see, one is pressured to work faster
- The probe is not shoved deep enough into the people's ears (but then this will cause discomfort, and many already fear their temperatures being taken this way)
- Singaporeans are all lazy to clean their ears (I saw not a few ears with gunk encrusted on them - luckily I was wearing gloves), so the ear wax prevents the correct temperature from being read!

Strangely enough, I got the highest readings from the tudung-clad Malay women. Perhaps they keep their ears abnormally clean. Or the tudungs are just very hot.


[On winning the Best Unit Competition and the Armour Road Relay] Even if you're a regular: You rely on this sort of thing to give you meaning in life...

[On Psychiatric Patients] They should send them all to IMH, then close down [the] SAF ward, then I don't have to do duty. Yeh.

[On a surgical gown] Unless you can put on a bra yourself, then you put on your gown yourself (Ed: Aren't bras worn by the wearer unaided?]

All the RI GEPs don't have girlfriends, because they don't have a life

Lin Yucheng: 'I repeat everything twice. I repeat everything twice. I repeat everything twice.'... I miss him so much I'm making up things he would say. [Gabriel: Then why don't you call him?]

[On Guoquan] When you conjure up images of a cesspit, you see his face

Song of the moment:

Saint-Saens - Le Carnaval des animaux - Kangourous
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