Sunday, 9 August 2009

Story from Jane

Jane works in the private equity industry. Generally, they are the people who go “shopping” for profit making business. They also look into buying distressed business with the intention of turning it around and then sell it. Anyway, that’s not the notion today.

One day, Jane was sent to a cockle farm (si-ham), one said to be making tonnes of money and thus, attracted attention from the private equity industry. She was sent there to evaluate the farm and the company managing it to see if it is a viable business to buy. Naturally, she was given a tour of the farm…

It was then that she saw, much to her disbelief, that that the cockle breeding area was located in a lake right next to a factory. Toxic waste can be seen disposed into the lake and one can tell from the look of the water that it is highly polluted.

“Dit si ham mai yau tuk lor?” Jane asked the owner.
(Does this mean the cockles are poisonous?)
Leaning closely to Jane, the ownder whispered…
“Mo kam tai seng. Hai ah, yau tuk kah” (Not so loud. Yeah, it’s poisonous)
“Hah! Mo yam lei yim kah?” (What? No one comes to check?)
“Aiyah, yi tit ngo dei ho yi gau tim geh” (Aiyah, things like these can be settled)

It was then that Jane realised, that this heartless entrepreneur has made a conscious decision to sell polluted cockles in the name of profit. Well, since the authorities can be easily “gau tim”, I guess there is no stopping him.

But of course, Jane was traumatised. She stopped eating cockles and told her family and friends about her experience, advising them not to eat cockles as well.

But there is a problem…

Ya’ see, in the land where Jane lives, cockle is an important ingredient in what is seen as a food of national importance, known as char-kuey-teow. Taste bud stimulation from this food supersedes all other concerns. Further, some of Jane’s friends adopt the little-bit-of-poison-won’t-kill-you mentality. Besides, it’s not any other food… it’s char… kuey… teow.

And hence, Jane’s story shall just remain… as a story.


1 year ago…
It was just an ordinary day

2 years ago…
The identity inquiryWhat’s with the name?

28 comments:

Jools said...

Argh i eat curry kerang in huge quantities....

TIME TO GO COLD TURKEYYYYYY X_X

seokthong said...

I don't eat cockles, even in my char kuey teow. I simply don't like the look, hence i don't eat it :-)

KGC said...

Oh dear, that sounds so much like Pearl of Orient...! Or is it not? You tell me! :)

KGC said...

Oh dear, that sounds so much like Pearl of Orient...! Or is it not? You tell me! :)

MKL said...

Great post, Zewt. For me, you are the best blogger in the region (including Singapore), and I tell you why: Because you write in a way that makes people think themselves, you don't always give them a fixed opinion and everyone else just nods: Yes I agree, yes you are right.

This story really should make some people think (especially those in charge).

Swee Ping said...

OMG! No more si-ham for me!!!!!!!!

iamthewitch said...

I have heard of similar stories quite some time ago and have since stopped eating cockles. Not that I'm a fan to begin with, thank god for that :)

pinknpurplelizard said...

That's exactly the reason I don eat cockles in Msia. They thrive in polluted environments and contain a lot of toxic heavy metals. Plus I can do without cholesterol so I have always have my koay teow without cockles...

-eiling- said...

Lucky I hate cockles and I always order my CKT without these slimy stuff in it.

Mei Teng said...

I don't love cockles so not eating them is not a problem for me. Cockles aren't healthy food anyway.

Anonymous said...

cockles in lake? you sure buddy?

Terra Shield said...

Oh my! I love kerang, and especially when it is in char kuey teow. This is so unfair! Sobs

jam said...

But char kuey teow is never the same again without those cockles...

blackjack said...

I am not surprise. A lot of things can be gau-tim-ed in malaysia anyway.

Cindy Khor said...

is there a part 2 to this story?? i do hope that there's a happy ending to it... did she complain to the authority??

Zuraida said...

Jane needs to chill...otherwise people might think she's crazy!!hahahah!!!I love cockles, but then I eat them sparingly.

Sigh. Maybe I should stop?

mumsgather said...

I stopped eating kerang years ago and its no loss. :)

kyh said...

thank god i'm vegetarian.

zewt said...

jools - time to put that to a stop... :)

seokthong - good habit to have...

KGC - hmmm... not quite.

MKL - many thanks... those are really flattering words.

Swee Ping - that's the message :) though not the main point.

zewt said...

iamthewitch - good for you... all should stop. and think deeper about the issue.

pinknpurplelizard - but they might have just gau-timed the prawns in your koay teow too.

-eiling- - what about that nice curry mee? :P

Mei Teng - yup... good habit. but think deeper to get the message.

anon @ 10/8 3.28pm - gotta ask Jane.

Terra Shield - you can stop eating kerang, or put a stop to the gau-time culture.

zewt said...

jam - hahaha.. and curry mee too :)

blackjack - it's scary, isnt it?

Cindy Khor - hahaha... second part will probably be for me to give the real message behind the story.

Zuraida - u should... i heard that it's really very... very bad.

mumsgather - good to know :)

kyh - hahahaha... all hail the vege!

Anonymous said...

Jane is also suffering from "Tidak apa" attitude. It is okay if other people die as long as she did not eat it so she will not die.

If she is really so righteous, she should have done more, ie taken picture, call in the press whatever to get the truth out to the people.

-eiling- said...

Haha i don't eat curry mee! Lol...

Crankster said...

When I became vegetarian, I think I missed kerang the most. Guess I don't feel so bad now.

zewt said...

anon @ 12/8 4.42pm - i think jane needs more than rightousness to make a report. in this country, saying the right thing might end up you being missing.

-eiling- - a bit far fethced but luckily no kerang in wine... haha!

crankster - me never understand why kerang has got such huge legion of fans.

Crankster said...

You either love it or hate it, bro.

gina said...

eh.. my favorite addition to my morning nasi lemak is kerang leh.. sigh.

zewt said...

Crankster - haha.. i can tell :)

gina - well, eat at own risk :P.... but i would advise you to stop.