Saturday, October 30, 2010

Tissue Papers Sellers in Bedok

I was with my wife in Bedok yesterday, eating at the crowded hawker centre there. The food at Bedok Hawker Centre is value-for-money though I will not go so far as to proclaim that the food there is simply the best.

There are now many people of diverse backgrounds in Bedok. The majority is the elderly and there are many foreigners too. The ways and behaviours of the foreigners is not something Singaporeans can accept readily.

I have seen a China lady throwing an umbrella, just brushing me centimetres away after a tiff with her boyfriend. Such a behaviour is not readily accepted in Singapore.

Alright, now coming back to my main story, my wife and I were inundated or overwhelmed with tissue sellers in the hawker centres. The first such seller who approached me was an old lady with her middle-aged daughter. Then the second one was a China young man.

For the first seller, why did the daughter bring her aging old mother out to sell tissues? The sight is not a healthy one as I am thinking whether she is riding on her old mother's plight to gain sympathy to trade for a income.

The second seller is even worse. He is a young man, fit and look reasonably strong, why did he sell tissue papers?

Actually the sales of tissue papers at food centres is not wrong. When people are eating, then there is a need for tissues if they do not bring any. It may deem alright to buy when there is a need, or out of sympathy.

But for me, even if I sympathise with the many dozens of old men and women hawking their tissues around, and ask the diners, one by one,I will still not buy simply because in Chinese, there is a saying: "A meal is more important than even the time the Emperor seeks you for an audience. "

I think people need to be self-reliant through a job and not through sympathy or selling their bodies.

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