Thursday, November 04, 2004

Didn't know that, didja?


iTunes' party shuffle is playing a copy of: Sing, Sing, Sing - Benny Goodman - Clarinet a' la king, of which I have the original CD and therefore didn't steal music.
It takes one TV interview and a short newspaper blurb before my mother discovers she's Mr Miyagi's mother. She's just emailed me a warning that if ever she reads a joke about her goodself in this here blog, she will kill me dead. No matter if it was the church pastor who told her he read about this blog in Tuesday's papers, and still no matter if he said it was pretty good stuff. She will still kill me dead if I joke about her. So, no jokes about Mum. But plenty of leeway for blog posts about violence, sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll, or whatever it is that youngpeoplenowsaday listen to. Speaking of youngpeoplenowsaday, a friend of mine told me she spoke with some of them, and all of them have no inkling about what Singapore was like in the 70s and 80s. TV serials like 'Growing Up' doesn't help much to ameliorate the ignorance either. All you will get from watching 'Growing Up' is the idea that people in the 70s used to pout and frown a lot. Like ferinstance, did you know it was illegal for males to sport long hair in the 70s? You either had to be a Sikh or get yourself shorn short back and sides if you wanted to walk down, say, any street people used to walk down in the 70s. Even male visitors, arriving at Paya Lebar (yes, there was an airport there) or any port of entry, had to have their hair inspected, and if it were deemed too long, officious immigration officers would also double as barbers. Clipped, on the spot, then off to the carousels to pick up your bags. No head massage, no shampoo, no fuss. Did you also know about when it was actually really, really dangerous to go hiking or camping in Malaysia? A friend of my mother's (Mum, this is not a joke) wanted to take me flying in his Cessna, but I wasn't allowed to go, because there were Communists in the jungle and I'd be in danger if we crash landed in Taman Negara (and survived). From then till I turned six or so, I kept trying to draw pictures of animals with big mouths and sharp teeth and calling them Communists, because that was what I thought they were. It was only after I was told something something Emergency something Sukarno bomb McDonald's House something Indonesia attack Singapore something Chin Peng something murderer, that I was enlightened. Did you also know that 'Enter The Dragon' was banned in Singapore, ostensibly because it was violent? Betcha didn't know that before the New Paper, there was a tabloid called 'The New Nation', and that it was shut down? Or that Sentosa, Singapore's last resort island, was also home to Singapore's last Communist-suspect detainee? Or that 76 people died in the island's worst industrial accident, which together with several other major accidents in the 70s and 80s, precipitated the creation of a proper civil defence force? (I was at home at the time the ship blew up, and nearly jumped out of my skin when I heard the explosion). Didn't know all that, didja? Didja? Sigh, youngpeoplenowsaday. Tree-building You know Christmas is near when the nation starts tree-building


14 Comments:

Blogger cour marly said...

Geez. Thanks a mill, way to make me feel OLD.

11/04/2004 01:55:00 AM  
Blogger Mr Miyagi said...

Eh, hallo, you're not old, you're just knowledgeable.

11/04/2004 02:16:00 AM  
Blogger FF said...

In ten yrs, I will write a post called "Didja know what happened in the 90s and 00s?".

11/04/2004 08:56:00 AM  
Blogger Mandrake said...

actually, you can do a do you know thingy about the current time. Bet some people are ignorance of even whats happening around now.

11/04/2004 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger Bubblemunche said...

I was old enough to remember Kitaro's concert getting cancelled.

I was old enough to remember Hotel New World and the cable car accident.

I was old enough to remember about my Panini sticker collections.

Damn, I feel like a dinosaur.

11/04/2004 10:52:00 AM  
Blogger Cowboy Caleb said...

your mother does email?

fwaahhhhhh

11/04/2004 11:27:00 AM  
Blogger poezii said...

Heya, came across your blog via ricebowl journals.

I remember about the detainee on Sentosa - always tried to look out for his house/compound whenever I was there [but never did find it].

About the ban of long hair in the 70s - I don't remember it and only read about it in "The wrong way home". And don't they teach about the emergency in history nowadays?

But the one thing from the 80s that stuck in my mind the most - that cable car incident in the late 80s.

11/04/2004 11:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow ok i didn't know about that long hair ban. Wonder what's the reason behind that?

evie

11/04/2004 02:17:00 PM  
Blogger Kevin said...

evie: Uncle Lee didn't think it was proper for men to sport long hair lor. I remember more even in the late 80's, both me and my fren both sported long hair, working part time in toys'r'us. An old timer plain clothes CID who must have hadda bad day actually pulled him into the toilet and roughed him up, just coz he got long hair.

For me, the most memorable thing I can remember was watching News on our black n white tv when Bruce Lee passed away, it was BIG international news back then!

11/04/2004 05:37:00 PM  
Blogger littlecartnoodles said...

I'm old enough to remember that :

- there was a department store named Cortina on the site where Funan Centre is ;
- I played "catching" on the grounds of Chijmes after school while my school bus driver waited for those pesky St Nicholas girls to get their flag-lowering ceremony over with ;
- the Immigration Dept was at Empress Place and they had those long-stemmed ceiling fans ... and those signs that said, "Men with long hair will be served last" !

Aiyoh, all that typing has worn out this geezer ...

11/04/2004 06:50:00 PM  
Blogger Jayaxe said...

I knew 'bout the long hair ban but didn't know it was that serious. Hmmm. Wonder what if the ban stayed and Taiwanese boybands like F4 or 5566 dropped by for a visit.

11/04/2004 06:51:00 PM  
Blogger Ethan said...

Whatever it is that youngpeoplenowsaday listen to? I'm having trouble imagining violence, sex, and drugs going hand in hand together with Britney Spears.

Ok, maybe only the sex bit.

11/04/2004 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger Re-minisce said...

oh dear. i think miyagi-san go to jail soon.

11/05/2004 11:37:00 AM  
Blogger vrillybaby said...

hey, could you tell me more about the long hair ban?

5/30/2007 06:35:00 PM  

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