Tag Archive | Goh Chok Tong

Not these threads for the Istana!

Ms Nicole Seah, the defeated candidate from the National Solidarity Party, is a hugely popular young icon in Singapore and what I’m about to write may not be good for my health 😛

But write it I must! Ms Seah may have many talents but she doesn’t quite hit the spot as a sartorial guru — at least not yet!

I’ve come to this conclusion on seeing Tan Jee Say — one of the four Ti-Tans eyeing for a shot at Singapore’s elected presidency — in the flesh today

Nicole Seah's choice

He came to the Lunch Party’s regular monthly get-together and proudly showed off one of two garments that he said was chosen for him by Nicole Seah. Bought at Bugis and costing $50 or $70, he wasn’t quite sure as there were two purchases.

He isn’t quite as tall as Mr Goh Chok Tong, the emeritius senior minister, so I think Jee Say should  have been advised to avoid horizontal stripes, especially when they are both wide and loud!

Now contrast this with what he used to wear before he decided to take the plunge for a fashion-makeover and tell me what suits him better?

seriously earnest

Bonanza's awaits behind

It may be my over-conservative eyes and I may be very superficial to focus on Jee Say’s clothes. But as he is the person with ambitions to be the most public face of Singapore, clothes should matter more than when the aim is to be a well-loved Ah Beng, n’est pas? 😀



Incidentally the pork ribs were one of the dishes we ate today. For the rest go here, as the menu was exactly the same as when Nicole Seah came to lunch with us last month. We are a bunch of aunties and uncles who like to stick to the tried and trusted. 🙄

we ribbed him too!


Having Nicole Seah for lunch

fresh viet rolls

The Lunch Party had Nicole Seah for lunch on July 7. Or to put it unambiguously, the pre-eminent Opposition candidate whose team stood in Marine Parade GRC against then Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong came for lunch with the “uncles’ and “aunties” of the Lunch Party at our monthly gathering.

An “uncle” was despatched to fetch her while another “uncle” volunteered to send her back to office after lunch. The “uncle” (a Lunch Party member) who conveyed our invite was none other than Tan Jee Say who contested against the PAP at the Holland-Bukit Timah GRC under the Singapore Democratic Party banner.

All of us was impressed by Nicole’s maturity and her earnestness, although I wish she won’t keep saying somewhat apologetically “I know it’s cheesy” every time she uttered something patriotic or goody two shoes, like wanting to do something for Singapore, the people, etc.

centre of attention

Dear earnest child, it’s fine to be idealistic, caring, polite, somewhat shy. At your age, there’s no need to be strident, cynical, reckless, rebellious, rowdy, all hallmarks of the typical cyber thugs who relentlessly hit out at the PAP Government’s underbelly. What you should worry a little more about is what serving Singapore could do to your looks! Remember what happens to PAP swai ger, Charles Chong. Ditto Chiam See Tong, and so on. 😦

Already, at 24, you look far older than your age, after the gruelling pre-general election campaign and the continuing call on your time by older Sgporeans who wish to fete you and find out what makes you tick!

Don’t live your life like a candle in the wind, your fire burning out long before you get into Parliament.

Meanwhile, below are more samplings of what we ate when Nicole graced our lunch.

spinach n 3 types of egg


brocoli and fried tofu "pillows"

honey pork ribs

prawn rolls

Lim Biow Chuan’s non-Eureka moment

Actually, any ordinary Singaporean or less well-heeled resident in our sunny island could have told MP Lim Biow Chuan the story, the whole story and nothing but the story and he needn’t spend time and effort to see for himself.

I’m referring of course to Mr Lim’s experiment some 10 days ago after which he posted on Facebook and which was reported with breathless “newsworthiness” by the Straits Times.

Here is what ST Online said:

wah, not so world class, leh!

Member of Parliament (MP) for Mountbatten – Lim Biow Chuan – did his own spot checks on the ground after complaints about the regularity of some bus services during the election campaign period.

He posted this on May 16 on his Facebook page at 4.48pm then: ‘I received complaints about the regularity of some bus services during the campaign period. This morning, I waited at the bus stop from 8am to 9am with LTA (Land Transport Authority) officer to do an audit and was horrified at the result. Will be writing to PTC (Public Transport Council) and LTA to lodge a formal complaint about the service standards of the bus services.’

On Thursday at 2.30pm, he posted this next update on his investigations: ‘Was at bus stop next to Block 56 Cassia Crescent this morning for 2nd informal audit. Results are slightly better although there is room for improvement. For service 70, a total of 8 buses came within a period of 50 mins. Service 197 need to improve. Will feedback to PTC for their follow up with SBS. Then monitor to see whether there are improvements.’

Or since he’s obviously an online social media user, he could have visited several of my posts which deal with the same subject. I’m not a regular bus or MRT user but would like to be one, if only our public transport is as seamless as it is in Hongkong.

Read what I had to say when Emeritius Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong reminisced last September about his bus-taking school days. I wasn’t impressed and said why, here.

All good things, or otherwise, must come to an end..

and I don’t mean Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew and Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong’s moves to leave the Cabinet whose line-up may be known as early as tomorrow.

Instead, I’m referring to the tenuous 3+-year work relationship that mum’s Picky Siti has with the family.

I won’t go into the latest breast-beating (mine, not hers) details here, except to say those who don’t know me other than thru this blog can search for some of her more audacious behaviour that’s been documented in various posts here.

Those who know me would have been inundated by enough of my almost daily laments to want to have more of the same in my blog. As some of my “advisors” — including family members who don’t share my home — have said: Take a decision and move on.

But such advice is easier to give than for the recipient to act upon.

So, I decided to escape the tense situation in my home for a couple of days and took refuge with a good and multi-decade friendship friend in Kuala Lumpur.

Only on arrival to find that my good friend, ES, and her maid R — who has worked for her for 18 years — are practically not on speaking terms and have been like that for months.

R on a good day

ES gave instructions and R silently executed them, with a huge sulk plastered all over her face. As R has always had a sulky face, the extra sulk didn’t do anything for pleasant scenery.

How they are going to last till early July when R leaves for home and will be replaced by her daughter — if the paper work works out — I don’t know.

Oh, sure, I’ve been privy to the deterioration in the relationship for ever so long but had always assumed that as ES isn’t at all picky except where her beloved dogs are concerned and so would continue to put up with R’s way of running things.

R’s forte is with the dogs and the garden — huge by Sg standards — and her lucrative tailoring sideline, which my friend tolerates, so long as the helper does her work, including housework, and doesn’t liaise with her dress-making clientele within my friend’s home.

As for housework, it’s been at best sloppy but I had put it down to the fact that there are always dogs running in and out, except when I’m visiting and they are put out in the yard till I go to bed.

Unfortunately for R, my friend has now moved to the stage where she’s semi-retired and spends more time at home than she’s ever done. And R’s omissions have become more obvious.

Or mayb they had always been obvious but busy people tend to close an eye or even two, rather than rock the domestic boat when there are more important battles to be fought on the professional front.

During my 5-hour coach ride home yesterday, extended needlessly by anorther 20 minutes (about which will expound in another post), I had plenty of time to reflect on our situations, that of ES and mine.

Well-educated ex-professional women being held to ransom by virtually uneducated or semi-educated women because of domestic set-ups that need an extra pair of hands!

How did we ever end up in this situation?

I can’t speak for ES but mine has mostly to do with my mum.

Why on earth didn’t I see what was ahead and made suitable arrangements — such as downsizing, establishing homes more conveniently located to supermarkets, food courts, restaurants etc — so that there would be minimum need for formal live-in home help.

It’s too late now to change tack. Will focus energy instead on simplifying life so that mum’s maid can spend more time on looking after her than cleaning and re-cleaning stuff that’s peripheral or of no use to our lives or living!

Last meal with Lunch Party be4 GE Day

Now that the vote counting has begun and the die already cast, I would like to share that the Lunch Party had our regular monthly lunch yesterday with Tan Jee Say, the ex-PPS of SM Goh Chok Tong (when he was still DPM) and who boosted the morale and chances of the Singapore Democratic Party no end in the General Election 2011 just ended.

As usual there was much ribbing, with TJS our target, as had been the case ever since he published his $60 billion magnum opus to regenerate Singapore!

I won’t go into detail about the lively conversation except that all of us including real PAP men, pro-Oppositioners and perhaps some “don’t knows” had nothing but goodwill towards Jee Say and one another, some differing political views notwithstanding.

If that’s not something to cheer about being Singaporean, I don’t know what is!

And without more ado, here are the commemorative pix of that lunch on May 6, the official designated “cooling off” date for GE 2011.

Name of lunch room: Bonanza. Prophetic?


I'll have a stab at it


Hmmm... that's fishy?


we started with this


n ended with this. Unusually no sweet ending 😆


prawns in potato basket?


asparagus n scallops


Unmistakingly otak

Pay Singaporeans & PRs to stay out of casinos!

Messrs Lim Boon Heng, George Yeo and Goh Chok Tong have all touched on the subject in the last few days.

All about their mea culpas in letting the casinos aka integrated resorts into Singapore; explaining that choosing between gambling and high  unemployment, the chips came down on stemming joblessness by creating jobs.

OK, I buy that argument. Actually I don’t fuss about having casinos in Singapore. Neither did I miss them when they weren’t here.

Now that big wigs from the PAP cabinet involved in the collective decision to say “yes” tp casinos are re-visiting the subject with a vengeance, it looks like gambling and casinos are going to become a hot election issue, even as the Opposition are going to talk ministers salaries, Mas Selamat’s escape, expensive housing, the flood of foreign talent, the flooding from rain et al.

And as the big wigs hammer away on the subject, I fear truly that as a sweetener to those on the ground soured by the casinos, the PAP may make an election promise to up the preventive $100 per day entry slapped on Singaporeans and permanent residents.

If that happens, remember what I said here.

Still rather than get angry with the PAP if it raises the levy, I think a better approach would be to suggest another way to tackle gambling problems and dissuade Singaporeans and PRs, especially those who can’t afford it, to stay away from the casinos.

And here are my suggestions:

  • Pay citizens and PRs to stay away from the casinos. Give each who signs up to be excluded a $200 hongbao per year.
  • Pay all work permit holders who sign up for exclusion a $50 hongbao. As this group isn’t covered by the levy, too many have been lured to visit. It is Singapore’s social responsibility to these workers — who man for man would be poorer than the average poor Singaporean — to help them stay away.
  • Those who take the hongbao to exclude themselves would have to repay the hongbaos at triple the amount if they sneak into the casinos.

So instead of just hammering away with draconian levies, the Government could take such more creative approaches that may be just as, if not more, effective than hitting the gambler’s pockets

Of course, such hongbaos would mean the Government having to disgorge some of the levy collected from Sgreans and PRs.

Of course, they would also benefit those who would never step into a casino, out of religious or other high-minded principles.

But surely both implications are small beer compared to the hundreds, if not thousands, of residents who will be saved from the dens of gambling iniquities!

Right, Messrs Goh, Yeo and Lim?

Mr Wong Kan Seng, please don’t…

…score your own goal!

What you said about the Opposition parties shooting for Group Representation Constituencies was quite unnecessary, just like — dare I say it? — Mr Goh Chok Tong bringing up the story of Dr Seet Ai Mee washing her hands on the eve of the 1991 general election.

Twenty years later, Mr Wong, you may be doing the same, if you or your colleagues continue on the same tack.


You said: “‘Some say they are doing it for party renewal, some want to be the first ones to do so, but what is the election about? Is it about the ambitions of a political party or individuals to make history?’

But Mr Wong, what is wrong with a political party and individuals wanting to make history, so long as those harbouring such ambitions on achieving them ensure that Singaporeans in general are free from want, disease and corruption and can exercise responsible expression?

Don’t tell me that the PAP in being super determined to stay in power isn’t ambitious to make history, leave a legacy along with serving the people?

Mr Wong, by all means suggest to the Opposition that it would be kinder on their chances of  better performance in the 2011 election if they don’t bite off more than they can chew — or deliver.

Even this may be considered patronising from a political opponent and may be best left to the likes of kaypohs like me, Yawning Bread and Singapore Mind!

Our Prime Minister wants a kinder and gentler Singapore. Please don’t spoil the mood, OK?