Appointment of Ms Indranee Rajah as Special Advisor to the Ministry of Chindian Affairs

Wed, 25 Apr 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

APPOINTMENT OF MS INDRANEE RAJAH AS SPECIAL ADVISOR TO THE MINISTRY OF CHINDIAN AFFAIRS

  1. The Prime Minister’s Office announced yesterday that Ms Indranee Rajah has been promoted to full minister. She will be appointed Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, Second Minister for Finance and Second Minister for Education. She will also be appointed Second Minister for Law until 30 June 2018.
  2. The Ministry of Chindian Affairs approves of this and congratulates Ms Indranee on her promotion.
  3. The Ministry would also like to announce that Ms Indranee will be appointed as Special Advisor to the Ministry with effect from today.
  4. As Special Advisor, Ms Indranee will provide advice on the Ministry’s strategies to grow Chindian capabilities. Ms Indranee will also advise on the participation and engagement of Chindians in national fora and conversations.
  5. To celebrate this momentous occasion, the Ministry would like to announce a special, one-off holiday. This will take place immediately after Chindian New Year.
  6. As Diwali 2018 will fall on Tue, 6 Nov 2018, Chindian New Year will be celebrated on 1.5 days – from Wed, 27 Jun 2018 till noon on Thu, 28 Jun 2018.
  7. The special holiday will be celebrated from noon on Thu, 28 Jun 2018 till noon on Fri, 29 Jun 2018.
  8. Chindian Chap Goh Meh will be celebrated on Thu, 12 Jul 2018.

MINISTRY OF CHINDIAN AFFAIRS

(NOTE: This is satire.)

That feeling

That feeling when... (PHOTO: Daily Mail)

That feeling when all you need to buy is one – one – laundry net but you are stuck behind Man Who Feels The Need To Buy Everything In The Japan Home Store, in the only check-out queue manned by World’s Most Meticulous And Organised Cashier, who waits patiently for the same man to count out his cash to the cent ($107.90), while you have enough time to write and edit this post, including redundant and extraneous – tautological, perhaps – words, bearing in mind that the genesis of this sentiment took place some five – five – minutes ago…

…was how I felt this weekend when I popped into the shop for what I thought was a quick purchase, but which ended up taking 10 minutes.

No wonder, then, why AI is coming for everyone’s jobs.

What the kids are calling it: The hashtag

NOTE: I wrote this two years ago.

Unfortunately, ST Communities seems to have disappeared, so I thought I’d archive this piece here for post-terity (hur hur).


July 21, 2014
The Straits Times
Communities – Education

Growing up, you referred to it as “hex” or “the pound sign”. Now, you refer to it as “hash” or “the number sign” – correctly, you think, with a sigh of relief.

End of story? Think again, folks – this thing with two pairs of parallel lines intersecting each other has had a new lease of life breathed into it, and is gaining popularity with each passing day.

“What? That’s ridiculous!” – what some of you might probably exclaim.

#pfft #parents #lame – what your kids will probably say in eye-rolling response, replete with a weird finger action where they cross the index and middle fingers of both hands.

Don’t call in the exorcist just yet, though – much as you might be inclined to disagree, the kids are all right; they’re just hashtagging.

The hashtag, as it has come to be known, was first developed on Twitter for use as a means of indexing and retrieving topics.

An example: Searching for #NLB or #NLBsaga on the micro-blogging platform allows you to easily locate stories on the recent pulping furore.

The explosion of the hashtag’s usefulness and popularity on Twitter has influenced other social networking sites like Facebook and Instagram to adopt hashtags too.

Here’s the twist – hashtag usage has evolved to encompass what linguist Ben Zimmer calls “ironic metadata”: light-hearted humour in which users subtly poke fun at themselves or others.

In my case above, I’ve used a hashtag for that purpose in my Facebook photo caption: “Thought I’d take a selfie with my new friend. Apparently, the feeling of affinity isn’t mutual #putmebackinmyenclosureyouterrorist.”

The hashtag creates humour on two levels:

  • Through its length and exactitude, which prevent it from being functional, so it’s clear I’m not being serious about using the hashtag for its literal purpose; and
  • Through its succinct depiction of the turtle’s imagined response to being forcibly taken out of its enclosure for the snapping of a frivolous selfie.

(DISCLAIMER: No turtles were harmed in the making of this picture, and all turtles were returned to their enclosure immediately after they were photographed.)

End of story? Not yet!

Hashtag usage has become so popular online that people – including your children, much as you might be inclined to disagree with regard to their classification as humans – have been using it offline as well.

Hence, the weird finger action they’ve been doing, and your alarm at the possibility of them being possessed.

So don’t worry about the kids. Much like the hash symbol, your young’uns will morph and grow in strange and varied ways, but they’ll eventually find some function in life, useful or otherwise.

Last but not least, should you join in the fun of physical hashtagging?

My advice is a firm and solid “No”, lest your kids think you possessed too.

#endofstory #forreal #imserious