Elvish-marked, abortive, rooting hogs.

Black Pooters

I’m extremely annoyed with the lack of ethics that a lot of Singaporean mechanics possess.

These wrangling pirates revel in a cut-throat ethos that places their customers’ needs below their shop’s bottom line.

To explain, Pooters’s battery finally yielded the ghost at the start of the work-week.

Because I didn’t have the time to get a replacement earlier, I went down to the shops near my home in the hope that I could buy a battery, return home, fix Pooters up, and carry on with the rest of my Saturday.


I was quoted a price of $90 at one shop and $60 at the next shop. I knew a battery didn’t cost that much, but I had no way of verifying that at that point in time.

Anyway, I gave some excuse about having to make sure it was the correct model and left the shops.

But I was so furious that they tried to take advantage of me obviously because of my n00b-ly ‘jiak kentang’ demeanour/inability to speak a Chinese language well: Hokkien Chinese, Mandarin Chinese, etc.

Pseudo-sociological ramblings aside, this pillagery probably worked last time in the age of no Internet.

Now that information is more perfect than it was before, however, a phone call to Lim Ah Boy (LAB) Shop when I got home provided more clarity – a Yuasa 12N9-4B-1 battery is worth $32, if it matters to anyone else.

I learnt something though: I could have saved myself much grief if I had called up the shops to check the prices + convinced myself that the trip down to LAB was worth the trouble.

Since the worm of conscience will never begnaw the souls of most of these louts, I’ve never been more convinced that there’s probably a market for English-speaking, socially-conscious motorcycle mechanics.

Unfortunately, there’s only so much one can do with a BA in English (and a PGDE to boot). But if you’re my student, and you can tell me how many King Richard III references I’ve made, you win a prize.

About the author

Laremy Lee

A versatile educator, writer and editor, Laremy Lee (李庭辉) has the uncanny knack of being one of the few among his generation in Singapore who crafts compelling stories in different genres.

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