several years later, when our generation of people start to die, they’ll do an autopsy on us and discover black unnamed substances solidified within our lungs, each and every one of us, same substances, and DNA tests would date these substances back to June 2013.
Yup, the haze is back and with a major vengeance. It’s been a regular happening since ’97 or so, when Indonesian farmers would prepare their lands via a slash-and-burn method (cheaper, faster, better. Really! Secondary school geography lessons! I still remember them!). The smoke from the major fires would then be blown over to Singapore and some southern states of Malaysia, resulting in a month or so of haze. This also always happens during the hottest and driest months of the year, so there’s not much rain or wind to clear the air.
This year, it’s worse. Historical records showed a high of 226 on the PSI (Pollutant Standard Index) scale in ’06 or so. This year, scarily, the PSI just went on shooting up, from 200+ during the middle to the week, to 371 on Thursday and 401 on Friday. The populace are even more concerned about this than I remember back during the SARS period. At 401 this morning, the roads around my area were eerily empty at 8am. Keyboard cowboys and warriors have taken the internetz and overloaded us with memes of every sort. N95 masks are sold out island-wide, profiteers are sprouting up everywhere, trying to make a killing of 200%-300% profit off the masks. Normal medical masks are useless.
Unfortunately, a lot of Singaporeans are also saying that about our leaders. While kind, hardy souls are doing the little that they can to give out water, cooling tea and masks, our leaders have asked us not to stop work, written a letter, held a press conference and refrained from fighting like small children.
Update: Apparently there are stocks of N95, but there are supply chain difficulties.
I’m not a pappy-ist or pappy supporter of any kind, but really, just because the government didn’t give a stop-work order doesn’t mean they are incompetent. Just because they’re holding press conferences doesn’t mean they’re just sitting on their asses. Yes, they could go out there and give away N95 masks for free, but logistics takes times. It’s better than they just give away masks willy-nilly, and then be rendered as incompetent as well as resource wasters.
Yes, they could give a stop-work order or work-from-home order, but people calling for this just want a lazy day off from work. Stop-work or WFH orders don’t have to come from the government, duh! Look at your own employers or bosses. Why not out your company’s name and your bosses’ photo on FB and call them evil and incompetent and useless because they didn’t give you a free mask or tell you to stay home? Why not just force them to give you a Free Sick Day or Haze Day pass? Of course being the Sinkies that we are, there’ll be those who will then proceed to ‘spoil market’ by hanging out at JEM or the nearest shopping mall “because at home no air-con v suffocating“. Right. Your office no air-con, isit.
Maybe I’m just nauseous from too much haze. After it hit 400, 2 hours in the open made me feel like the time I smoked 2 packs of cigarettes in 1 day, for fun. But I’m sick of all this complaining. When our G gives orders, we call them communist or socialist regimes who can’t leave well enough alone. When they don’t, they’re evil, incompetent and useless. When they don’t give free stuff, they’re evil. When they do, they’ll probably get called out for hoarding resources in the first place. Our G is not my favourite political party at any time, but if you want action, just GO take action on your own. If teenagers and youngsters can give away free water and cooling tea, so can you. If you don’t have money, then don’t. If you don’t have air-con at home, go to the nearest NTUC or air-con foodcourt or community centre or library or cinema. If you’re not happy with profiteers, go LYNCH them or something. Stand in front of their fucking shop and direct would-be buyers to the next nearest cheaper source. Don’t complain on the internet, then turn around and spend the $80 buying that box of 20 masks from them anyway. Aunties and uncles v poor thing? Give them a mask and tell them to sit down for 5 minutes while you clear your own fucking tray at the food court instead of spewing chicken bones all over the table.
Seriously, if I were Miss Singapore, I wouldn’t wish for world peace. I’d just wish for a nation of non-complainers.