10 Things That Probably Happen ONLY IN MALAYSIA

1. Plenty of achievements that made it into the Book of Records were things that did not involve special talents/skills or did not require a lot of practice, instead were made possible just because the organisers managed to get generous sponsors for resources and a large number of volunteers, for example, the longest satay grill and the longest ‘yee sang’.

2. Charitable activities and donations to the less fortunate by corporate companies as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme are being publicised in the newspaper. While I totally understand the need to create awareness of the needs of certain welfare homes, I believe there are better ways to do it – not by highlighting how ‘socially responsible’ some companies are by publishing photos of them presenting big mock cheques and conducting activities for the residents of the homes. Honestly, I’m not sure how such events get the media coverage – the companies submitting their stories to be published? Or they extend the invitation to reporters? Or the reporters somehow just get wind of the events and decide that they are newsworthy? Or the reporters just stumble upon these events?! Perhaps it’s a win-win situation… the newspaper get stories to fill up their pages and the companies get free publicity! In school, I learned in Pendidikan Moral that the definition of ‘Ikhlas’ (‘Sincerity’) is “Kesucian hati tanpa mengharapkan balasan bila melakukan sesuatu” (“Purity of heart without expecting rewards when we do something”). I assume ‘rewards’ could be indirect in this context. On the other hand, companies which donate anonymously or hold charitable events without any media attention deserve our highest respect.

3. In Chinatown (Petaling Street), the majority of stalls are manned by non-Chinese who are not even Malaysians!

4. Food outlets at the roadside with no walls, having zinc roof or are just covered by a canopy are called ‘Restaurants‘!

5. A stretch of road of less than 200m could have 12 billboards side-by-side! Can be seen along the road between Taman Tun Dr Ismail and Damansara Kim.

6. There can be 35 advertisements for ‘Lori Sewa’ on one single lamp post! Spotted in a housing area in Puchong (most have different phone numbers)…

7. We could find 6 traffic light posts at a single junction showing the same colour at the same time. Found in Section 17, PJ.

8. It is so common for people to say ‘revert’ when what they really mean is ‘reply‘. “Please revert as soon as possible.” Sounds familiar? ‘Revert’ actually means ‘to return to a former state’…

9. Words like ‘mischievous‘ and ‘grievous‘ are pronounced as ‘mischie-VIOUS‘ and ‘grie-VIOUS‘. For the proper pronunciation, try listening here.

10. Malaysians end their Manglish/informal English sentences with ‘one‘. “Not like that one…”. Do you say this? 😉 While ‘lah’ is understandable because it is used in other local languages and dialects so it is natural for us to use it also in casual English conversation, the origin of ‘one’ really puzzles me! We don’t say “Ini macam punya satu…” or “Bu shi zhe yang de yi…”.

3 Comments on 10 Things That Probably Happen ONLY IN MALAYSIA

  1. How can you forget the greatest Malaysian pronunciation of all?

  2. Yeah… the problem is when we do pronounce words correctly, most fellow Malaysians would think we speak funny or trying to talk with ‘slang’ 😉

  3. Add-on: … that when we leave office at 5pm or 530pm, colleagues will look surprised and ask, “So early ah?!”.

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