Thursday, November 11, 2010

Mata not enough?

When I was driving on the expressway this evening, I was pondering. Did I miss the news that Singapore is changing to left hand driving? Or have the cunning car manufacturers grown tired of building mini-buses and putting on a "MPV" label so that they can sell them at car price, so now they are building van-looking cars?

Because I saw three vans cruising on the right most lane on the expressway. One even went all the way to overtake a taxi, and judging from my speedo showing 90km/h, he was easily going at 100km/h. The last that I heard, the speed limit for vans is still at 60km/h. But I suppose we can't really blame these drivers for ignoring the limit when their vans have the necessary power to go beyond 60km/h. Especially when nobody is watching. Seriously, when was the last time that you see a traffic police?

During a car accident? Not necessary. If nobody is badly hurt or dying, the traffic police will not be there. As a rule of thumb, if the ambulance is not there, the traffic police will not be there. At places where people park like their grandfathers bought the road? Nope. It is no longer the responsibility of the traffic police to book illegal parking as this job has been handed over to the LTA. Which means you can now park your car on the double zig-zag yellow lines in front of a traffic police and all he can do is call LTA. Which means you can still park there for the next 2 hours and run your errands.

So what are all the traffic police doing then? Even YOG is way over and they don't have to go around the island fining drivers $130 anymore. So what is keeping them so busy that they don't have the time to catch taxis/vans/buses/lorries/long vehicles speeding at 120km/h on the expressways? I don't suppose traffic police are involved in NDP rehearsals?

In fact, even the patrol officers are not patrolling on the streets anymore. These days, in order to see a man in blue, you have to either wait for the next NDP or career fair, or visit a neighbourhood police post near you. Actually I can't really remember how a policeman uniform looks like anymore. For all I know, they could have reverted back to wearing shorts, especially with all the flood warnings these days.

Some people on the street are now blaming the police for not watching the streets, and thus leading to case after case of parangs gang fights. Oh yes, gang fight are back in fashion again, just like floods and prostitutes. These days you have to be careful about staring at the wrong person, especially when in Downtown East and Bukit Panjang. If not, the next thing you know, a gang of young men will run after you with their parangs, shouting some number codes on the way.

I really find it amazing that these people can just bring a parang along wherever they go. I mean, isn't that kind of heavy? And how do you hide it and not attract attention? Everybody knows that if you are holding a roll of newspapers, there must be a parang in it. We are trained this way by all the Hong Kong gangster movies. So how does one big group of young men carry their portable parangs up the MRT train or bus without someone calling the cops? Ahh. Now I know why all those vans were in a hurry.

So where are the policemen again? Well, I know. They are busy parking cars with fake bombs and smoke to test the public's vigilance against terrorism. But judging from how the fake bomb was planted, with smoke, wires peeking out from the car door, LPG cylinders wired to a device visible on the passenger seat, and ticking sounds that could be heard from the car, I suggest that they watch some of the CSI and Criminal Minds to find out how fake car bombs should look like. Because if I were one of the passerbies, I would have expected a bear to jump out of the car.

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