Everyone has bad days.The past 48 hours were a culmination of several irritants which by themselves, wouldn’t have been worse than mosquito bites, but together, became cancerous to my usually pleasant demeanor.


VIPs. On the road, these guys are escorted by police outriders who shoo away the irrelevant, ordinary, unimportant people to create a path, somewhat like the parting of the Red Sea, so that the sparkling, polished, heavily tinted cars carrying their precious cargo can make their way through the clear roads to their destinations, and be damned about the other folk whose lives don’t matter.

I was leaving Sri Hartamas and having a pleasant drive towards the City Centre and was approaching a fork, the left leading to Sungai Buloh/Shah Alam, and the right leading to my chosen destination. Suddenly, I was ambushed by a police outrider who forced me to move to the extreme left lane (i.e. to Sg Buloh) without giving a damn about the fact that there were no U-turns on a major highway.

Mr VIP sir, is my life that unimportant? Am I that dispensable?


I had internet problems and called the service provider’s customer service.

12 midnite

Me: My DSL light is not showing. I can’t connect to the internet.

Customer Service: We’ve taken note of your complaint. Please turn off your modem and turn it on again in 15 minutes after we’ve reset your port. If the problem still persists, please call us back. Have a nice day.


Me: I still can’t connect to the internet.

Customer Service: Yes, according to the report, your DSL light is blinking.

Me: No, my DSL light is not even showing. Please amend your report.

Customer Service: OK, will do. Please hold, I’ll connect you to a technician.

(telephone music…sound of sea and waves)

Customer Service: I’m sorry. All our technicians are currently busy. I’ll have one of them call you soon.

Me: When?

Customer Service: In 2 or 3 minutes.


Me: Your technician hasn’t called back. I still can’t connect to the internet.

Customer Service: I’ll have a look at your report. Yes, your report says that your DSL light is blinking.

Me: No, I already told you guys that my DSL light is not showing. PLEASE amend your report.

Customer Service: OK. Haha. I guess the previous person didn’t amend the report. I’ll do it now. And hang on, I’ll connect you to the technician.

(telephone music again)

Customer Service: Sorry, they’re all busy. I’ll get one of them to call you back soon.

Me: Can you ask them to get back to me in the next hour please? It’s urgent. (I need to blog)


Me: Your technician hasn’t called me. What does it take to get your technician to call me? My internet connection is still down.

Customer Service: Hang on, I’ll have to look at your report. Uh huh, the report says that your DSL light is blinking.


Customer Service: Hang on, I’ll connect you to our technician.

(background music to calm nerves, sound of birds chirping and sunshine everywhere)

Customer Service: I’m sorry, I can’t get through to the technician. Is it okay if I get him to return your call?


Customer Service: Yes, he will.

Me: When? At midnight when I’m fast asleep?

Customer Service: No, before that.


Customer Service: We’ve just reset your port. Can you try to connect now?

Me: No. I’m not at home. Besides, resetting my port didn’t help the last time.

Customer Service: Well, when you’re at home, do try to connect, and if you can’t, please call us.

The next day, at 12 noon

(ting tong – house bell sounds)

Technician at my doorstep: I’m here to look at your modem. According to your report, your DSL light is blinking and you’re not able to connect to the internet.

Me: Sigh. My DSL light is not showing at all.

Technician: Then why didn’t you say so? If your DSL light is not showing, your modem is fried. You’ll have to get a new modem. I’ll need you to sign this report to verify that I’ve visited you to attend to your problems. Have a nice day!


I picked up The Star at 7.30 in the morning only to see the headlines stating that four of the giant bookstores were not going to carry Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on their bookshelves in protest of the fact that a couple of hypermarkets were selling the book at a much lower price.

Firstly, O great booksellers, I was already intending to pay a visit to your bookstore to purchase the book at the recommended retail price of RM109.90 as I’m a pretty much a lazy person who values her comfort above everything else, and rubbing shoulders with five hundred other people at the hypermarket wasn’t my idea of fun on a Saturday morning.

Instead, arrogance and a sense of self-pity prevailed and a full page ad was taken out by these bookstores. Me, I’m not loyal, you see. If you’re not selling the book, I’m not standing by your side. I’ll just get the book at Borders.

Be reminded of what happened 10 years ago when a huge hypermarket landed on our shores and decided to sell Milo at a much lower price. The local retailers were furious and refused to carry Milo in their shops, protesting against the manufacturer. What they realised later was that water would always find its natural source, and customers would always look for alternatives. The hypermarket which carried Milo at a loss didn’t end up losing; the local retailers wised up and life went on.

Later that morning, I found a tiny bookstore in Bangsar which carried the book at RM69.90. I had a pleasant chat with the lady at the counter, and we both laughed at the big boys. I even managed to get a copy of The Edge there, so all was well.


We were in the mood for pancakes, so we hopped over to Paddington House of Pancakes in Hartamas Shopping Centre for a quick bite. It started out rather promising; the place was awash with sunlight, the white gleaming tabletops a welcome sight to us, 3 starving girls. Paddington was having an offer: Ladies Have It Lucky! Lucky Ladies Get A Dessert Pannekoek With Cinnamon And Sugar At Only RM5.00++ With Any Savoury Pancake Meal.

We were all having savoury pancake meals, and we sure felt lucky, so two of us ordered the RM5 dessert pancake. No problems there.

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Although the Dollar Buckwheat Bruschetta was nice (and certainly, it would be sinful to go wrong with something so simple!), I thought the Fried Pancake filled with Spicy Minced Mexican Beef was rather appalling. The pancake was stuffed with a simple minced beef mix, and the entire dish lacked flavour. Salt was my best friend for the duration of the meal.

Then the trouble started.

We requested for our dessert pancakes to be served. The waitress came back and told us that the offer was one pancake for one bill, so she would have to split our bill into two. I asked if they were charging the same price. She said yes. Okay, no problems there, we figured.

A couple of minutes later, the waitress turned up again and said that her manager said that they couldn’t split the bill into two. And the offer was still the same. One offer per bill. I looked at the sign and sure enough it was a matter of interpretation. What irked me was that we weren’t informed about it earlier, when they were taking our orders that we were only entitled to ONE pancake. What further upset me was that the promotional sign was deliberately misleading. At first glance, it is easy to interpret it as one dessert pancake with one savoury pancake meal. The straw that broke the camel’s back was the fact that the manager was not interested in coming to our table to explain the situation to us and instead sent his pawn to defend the fort.

I was tired of all the lame explanations and cancelled the dessert orders completely.

The manager’s attempt to save the establishment RM5++ has only caused the loss of further business. And a loss of goodwill for the restaurant.

It doesn’t take a marketing person to figure that out.