Thursday, September 15, 2005

Going MAD

Boss called for me this morning, bypassing Head. Sure something not so good or very good. So strolled into his room.

"It's time for you to go for a refresher course. It'll be good for you and US." Boss said.
"Have to attend course again." I said, trying to remind Boss that I just attended one at the beginning of this year.
"This time is different. You will be attending a course entitled, 'Make a Difference" (aka MAD)' . This course...(blah..blah..).."

My ears started to ring. The left ear was tuning itself to something like " Nie mm kau chee sin.." . The right ear heard something like, " lu boh kau seow.. so must attend MAD course baru boleh tambah gila sikit."

"I thought this type of course was meant for Human Resourses people or maybe Marketing personnels?" I interjected.

"Ms HRM is unable to attend as her dad-in-law is hospitalized after a stroke. The marketing man is going for his annual holiday that time. The account gal has to get ready the accounts before the year end. You are the most suitable one-lah." Boss said.

Then Boss gave me the letter with a "P & C" on the envelope. Wah some more private and confidential.

I took the letter out and upon stepping out of the door, Ms Clerk, Ms Administration Asst smiled and Ms Steno asked me, " So confirmed you are going for MAD." I showed her the envelope, " P & C - lah". I said. How come 'P & C" matter, boss just informed me, people already knew and I'm still blur-blured-wan.

How I wish to inform Boss earlier that I would like to go for a holiday in Melbourne and take a chance to see Suzen. Then don't have to be a MAD participant. Ghee... this is getting me MADDER. Take a more positive view attending the MAD course, be the MADDEST man and be happy there.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Sales Gimmicks

Two lady collegues wanted to shop in CarreFour. So Head and I decided to go for our lunch in a nearby chichen rice shop while the ladies shopped. We realized that there many shoppers although it was only 12.40 pm, and it was not the end of the month yet.

After finishing our lunch, we went to look for the two ladies. They certainly were great shoppers carrying loads of goodies inside the numerous plastic bags. They then lined up to redeem some "free gifts" and some fun cards to try their luck for some prizes.

The ghiven fun card given is to be put into a sort of a juke-box where there will be light-bulbs blinking and music accompanying. The bulb light will light up when the music ends and match against the prizes. The prizes include rice cooker, rice, umbrella, cup and mystery gifts which is a pen. The Grand prize for the week could be "A paid trip for 2 to Australia" or "RM10,000 worth of jwelleries" or "RM10,000 worth of vouchers". Of course the unlucky ones would be given a note, "Come again Tomorrow".

Ever since these lucky fun cards are given out for a certain minimum sum purchase, many people have been coming here to do their shopping and at the same time trying out their lucks. The two ladies at the end of the 15 minutes wait, got a pen each. Each of them has at least eight to ten fun cards.

The waiting to try their luck was long, as some customers have more than a score cards. They would care less what the others are waiting and they keep trying their lucks with the fun cards. I saw one man having a stake of the, easily amounted to 30. As the lunch break wass short and the waiting was long, Head and I were worried that the two ladies might have to stay back overtime to finish their work in office.

The sales tactic is good and attracts a lot of customers. ButI think I may ask the management of that shopping centre to limit each player five fun cards each time they play during lunch break. Otherwise those office workers will be fired in due time when they go there for a SHORT shopping trip.

Friday, September 09, 2005

A Day Trip to Penang

A business phone call came and I had to go to Penang. I haven't been there for three years. So I looked forward positively to the trip although it was only for a day.

I reached Penang at 11 am via the scenic Penang Bridge. The appointment was to be at 2.30 pm, so I still had some time to rushed to the sea-side to enjoy the sea breeze. The weather was hot and I reached the Maimi beach only to see it was quiet. I took a short stroll and bought a can of 100 Plus from the stall-operator.

"Today, the beach is quiet. No people-wan?" I asked
"Ya-lah. Working day-mah. Afterwards evening, people will come." he said.
"Why no 'guay-low' here?" I asked further.
"Ya-lor. very few of them compare to last time. But now got some Arabs come." he said.
"So business okay?" I enquired.
"Not so-lah. 'Guay-low' come and enjoy and so speed-boat people got business, parachute-boat people are happy, We are happy too. The Arabs come here and see, see only. Difficult-lah." he explained.

I left the beach and quickly put a stop at LOrong Selamat for the Sister 'fried kway-teow'. The impact of the inflation must have been felt as a small plate costs RM5.00 but it is delicious. An iced-cool glass of Nutmeg juice helped to drain down the spice.

I then drove to Bayan Baru to fulfill my appointment.

After that I took the trip back via the ferry. As it was only 4.00 pm, the passenger portion of the ferry was quite quiet with a handful of people unlike before where it was always full of people. How things have changed. Penang has quiet down a little unlike those bustling moments I had experienced years ago.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

In the Kopi Stall

Sometimes I like taking a cuppa in the kopi-stall and do some observations on people. It is usually hot under the stall and the fans are just transfering the heat from left to right and then vice versa. But that doesn't deter me from going there for a cuppa.

As yesterday was a national holiday, I got up a little bit later than usual. I took a lazy stroll to the nearby kopi-stall, where I had 2 "yau-cha-kuei" and a cup of black "kopi". So I took my time enjoying dipping the cha-kuei into the hot kopi and slowly put into my mouth. "Wah... " what a satisfying feeling!! Who cares if the thermometer reads 90 degree Fahrenheit.

I flipped over the newspapers but nothing really pulled my interest. Then a couple with a 2 or 3 years old kid walked to the table next to me. Now my sense of observation began to stir.

The man quickly sat down. His wife, despite pregnant, had to carry the child and brought her to the chair next to the man. The man merely sat until the child was on the chair. His wife then went to the counter to place her order.

The cute little girl was very happy at first, smiling sweetly. Upon resting on the chair, she put her little hands on the table and started to gather the things that were still left on the table. Suddenly a thumping sound was splashed on the table by that man and he gave a single monotone "Ugh.."

The poor kid got startled and looked shocked. Her smile immediately disappeared. Her hands stopped to move and slowly retreated to her sides. Then her eyes just stared into her father, who gave her a stern look instead. Both sets of eyes were locked until the mother returned.

The mother then pulled a stool from my table over to hers. She put down the plate of noodles on the table. But the child didn't move at all until her mum got seated and she wanted to be attached with her. Again the father gave another " ugh." The child did not look at him at all but tried to grab her mother's hands.

What surprised me was that the child DID NOT cry at all. Normally, if such situation occurs, and from most observations, the child would cry. I could only guess that the child has been seasoned with her father's anger or maybe the father need to be more firece. Or otherwise the child would only cry if there is cane. Hopefully not.