It has to be bleep, bleep and bleep! | Selangor Times
Issue 118


It has to be bleep, bleep and bleep!
Writer: Patrick Teoh
Published: Fri, 13 Jul 2012

When I first coined the word “Niamah!” a lot of people asked me what it meant. Well, for those of you who don’t speak Cantonese, when spoken aloud the word means your mom.

Usually, when told the meaning the person asking the question would do one of a few things. One, recall with suitably impressive prudish indignation. Two, break into uncontrollable laughter. Or three, never speak to me again.
Fortunately, there have not been any of the third category. Yet.

Some people have accused me of being crude. The word is a bad word they say. Bad word? How? True, the word was abbreviated from the full version which Cantonese speakers utter when their intentions towards you is something less than maternal. But since I began using it I think Bleep! (Those pruddish flers at Selangor Times insist it’s not a polite word and have bleeped the word) has become a word which merely vocalises our innermost feelings about things important to us. Like family, future, education, money.  

And come on, admit it. Of late you have been saying that word a little more often than you thought you ever would.

Right?  Okay la, maybe some of you still just mutter it under your breath. Like when you read the newspaper over breakfast. Or when some rempit clown runs a red light and in the act endangers other motorist and pedestrians.

And right before a police patrol car too.

Some others of you may even be vocalizing the word at a discernible volume to your neighbours when you read about another 1Malaysia project being launched to add to the myriad others that are already out there confusing the heck out of ordinary, hardworking Malaysians.

Personally, I am waiting for the day when the prime minister will announce an all encompassing 1Malaysia. A Malaysia for ALL Malaysians. Yes, yes, I know. Thinking of whether that is ever going to be a reality just makes me want to scream BLEEP!!!  

We live in a country that is increasingly becoming a place where a lot of bleep things happen. (See how versatile the word is? It can also be used as an adjective.) Ministers whose families benefit from cheap (often times non-repayable) loans and then claim ignorance when family members are accused of mismanagement or breach of trust. Average Bleep.

Only because it is old news and as Malaysians we have resigned ourselves to not expecting anything from the investigations. Submarines, bought at great expense of tax-payers money, that cannot submerge. Quite big Bleep! because the amounts of monies spent even just to pay the commissions boggles our minds.

Elected public representatives who constantly urge citizens to tighten belts and weather the bad economic times who then show off their Armani suits and their spouse’s haute couture spring collection. Accompanied by the latest in handbags of course. This one big BLEEP! because it really pisses us off when politicians “advise” us to tighten our belts and don’t do the same themselves. With their money or the country’s.

And it isn’t all earth-shattering issues that make us say the word either. It could be something simple like not getting what you pay for. In services. Like right now when my broadband service takes five minutes to open a webpage.

Of course, I can’t complain because I signed a contract that made me agree to the providers only providing the speed of service to the best of their ability. “I’ve done my best wor. So sorry lor.” Bleep!!! Or having to pay 50 sen for a glass of water that came out of the mamak’s kitchen faucet. Bleep!

Actually, the number of Bleep moments in any given day in Malaysia is huge. For instance, while typing this I can across a Facebook post that alleged that some councilors in Selangor have raised a new regulation that unmarried Muslim couples in Kuala Selangor now have to sit separately if they want to watch movies in local cinemas. Now, you must admit that when you come across news stories like these a mere DAMN! Or even an angry WTH! Just doesn’t do it. It has to be BLEEP!!! Go on. Say it out loud. There. Feel better, right?

Pssst…actually hor, the biggest bleep at this moment, for me at least, is finding the 200 words to end this month’s column with. So there you can see that bleep is not limited to descriptions of bad things la. It also covers small irritations. Expressions of satisfaction and joy also can. Like after some great maggi mee goreng.

“Bleep! damn good la, mamak.” Of course the mamak probably won’t understand the word and will give you a smile when taking your money. But I wouldn’t recommend using the same expression of customer satisfaction at a bak kut teh stall or anywhere in Petaling Street.


 Selangor Times



Also by Patrick Teoh:

Quit the wishy-washy themes

few weeks ago my daughter who lives in Singapore sent me the link to a Singapore National Day promo video. 

Malaysia a safe country: The spinning goes on

The morning newspaper had on the front page a story about security in housing estates. How foreign guards are better than local ones. How illegal foreigners are getting jobs as security guards. How if we pay peanuts we get monkeys as security for our family and property.

Those damn illegal parkers

By the time you sit down to read this, the memories of Bersih 3.0 would be more than two weeks old. But I’ll bet that people will still be talking about the rally. Exchanging experiences. Telling some tall tales.

Transforming to what?

Just a few days ago I was driving past the Umno building in Kuala Lumpur. It was raining and the infamous bottle-neck traffic jam in that area of the city was worse than normal. I was stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic right beside the Umno building.

Absurd cost of … everything

Well, Valentine’s Day has come and gone. Along with the perennial, prerequisite hoo-hah that accompanies it.

End of the world?

In just a couple more weeks the Year of the Dragon is going to roll in. For the Chinese flers it is always an extra-auspicious period of the Chinese Lunar calendar. So what we can expect this Chinese New Year is an even more garish display of the colours gold and red in the shopping malls. Actually, the incessant Chinese New Year musak is already playing endlessly. Petaling Street vendors are going to drag on their sales of made-in-China new year “must-haves” until the last minute of the 15th day of the Lunar New Year of the Dragon.

Your right, my right, and all the ‘goreng’

In just a couple of weeks it will be the new year. Yes, 2012. Another year. But as with every new year for the past decade, I would say we Malaysians step rather tentatively into the next 365-day period.

Time to take the wheel

For a very long time now there has been almost complete anarchy on Malaysian roads. There appear to be no laws governing traffic, nor does there appear to be anyone bothered to obey them if there were. I am sure you see, as I do, on a daily basis motorcycles and motorcars ignoring red lights, double lines and stop signs.

Come on, get happy!

The past couple of weeks has been sort of tough. On the old brain I mean. Mine. Having to remember lines from a script that is not exactly Shakespearean quality and having to say them while moving around without knocking into the furniture on stage. Things were so stressful that I missed the big event of the month: the announcement of the Budget by the prime minister!

Manifestoes un-manifest

Last month I attended a fundraising dinner for a political party. For an opposition party la. When have we ever heard of the ruling coalition ever needing to organise a FUND-raising party? No, right? No need what. Fund-giving got la. Especially near elections time. But I digress.

Conditional love…?

JUST a few days ago a friend of mine sent me a Tweet message in which she referred to Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak as our Conditional Prime Minister. I laughed out loud when I received that. What a wonderfully apt description of the man, I thought.

The Great Clean-Up

For the past week or more the whole of the Klang Valley has been quavering with excitement, fear, anger, frustration and maybe a little despair.People have been arrested. Threats have been issued by both government and normally level-headed Malaysians. Balai Polis stores are bulging at the seams from overstocking of bright yellow t-shirts which everybody wants but cannot have. After all they’re perfectly good shirts. 100% cotton some more.

Harsh realities of this flawed paradise

As we turn the corner and head for the second half of 2011, things sure ain’t looking that hunky-dory. My family and I enjoyed a few days in the remote beaches of Cherating, Pahang. Those four carefree days of rushing waves and gentle breezes and oh-so-calming peace and quiet were elixirs for the much-stressed average Malaysian soul.

Who copied who?

By the time you read this the good folks in the little red dot, Singapore, would have been to the polls and either a) elected the almost all-powerful PAP again as their government of choice, or b) elected a much younger, more change-oriented government from one of the opposition parties like The Workers Party or the Singapore Democratic Party.

He who laughs last…

As I sit down to write this a lot of funny things are happening in my country. Sex scandals. Snap elections threats. Detailed explanations of when a Bribe is not a Bribe but a Gift.











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