Stupid cockroaches and discontent


Returning home this evening we were presented with the sight of a large cockroach, sitting placidly on the kitchen wall, showing no fear at all. So I took a shoe and walloped it.

In Hong Kong, cockroaches would tend to scuttle away if you came upon them in the kitchen. Singaporean cockroaches are either braver or much stupider than their Hong Kong cousins. I don’t know if that points to a failure in education or because the Singaporean cockroaches are more complacent. Why would that be? Do they not realize there’s a global market for insect-based labour these days, and they can’t just expect to sit there and have it easy any more?

Of course, cockroaches don’t get National Service, which might explain why they’re so rubbish at defending themselves. Although to be fair, the average NSman in Singapore probably isn’t trained to defend himself from giant shoe-based assault.

We took three taxis today, and although one driver remained silent for the whole journey, the other two complained about how the government is obsessed with money and doesn’t care about the citizens of Singapore. It felt like we were inhabiting a cliche of Singapore life.

Having had a taxi driver tell me that all taxi drivers are in the pay of the government, I was a little nervous to agree with the driver, in case that led to the car screeching to a halt and me being arrested for sedition, while my agent provocateur of a driver laughed at me, but that is the sign of a paranoid mind. And Singapore does have decent roads and safe streets, even if the cost of driving on those roads is fairly mindbending.

I’m not sure if disaffected taxi drivers reflect the mood of the general population, but it’s disquieting to hear people say they hate the country they live in. I get angry that the climate here will eat your clothes, but I’m not that cross.

Not sure how the roaches feel either.


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