My First Rally

So, I just went to my first Election Rally. Hosted by the Workers Party. Venue was the open field bounded by Street 51 and 52 which is like a 5 minutes walk from my place.

You see the star? The surrounding entire light green portion from road to road was filled with people. Rough guess: Nearing 20,000.


So I got there on time right, 7 pm sharp. Which was what was advertised. Thinking that I could stand with the rowdy WP supporters. But, heck by then all the way to 50 metres from the stage was full of people. Ok, grabbed a spot next to some Indian fellas. In a crowd, one always tends to stick with their own race [it's inherent in human nature man, nothing to do with multi-culturalism]. The ice cream and drink sellers were out in full force. Of course la, roaring trade tonight man. So, many goddamn entreprenurial opportunities at rallies. I know what to do for the next one in 5 years time. Hopefully, my blog lasts and I won't forget.

Main course:

So, the first guy steps up does the hellos and introduces Gopal Krishnan. That's the Indian guy, bushy moustache, maintenance expert + part time cabbie, my dad's friend and my friend's distant uncle. He did ok-ok. Not a fiery charismatic speaker. One of those slow monotone ones. And when he did his Tamil version, it so didnt come out right. I say the way to connect with the common man is not to use proper Tamil. Do it street style bebeh. Say it the way we do.
Ultimately, none of the manjens bothered listening much to. Even we Indians kinda switched off, though one thing I gotta note. You can hear it in a man's voice if his heart is behind his cause. Gopal Krishnan's one is. Nuff for me. So when he went "nandri vanakkam", guess who the hero who started the clapping. Whoopin like a banshee. Yours truly.

Then, the Malay dude does his speech. He was fine too, Abdul Salim. This is the ITE dude. But he didnt speak dumbassedly at all. I actually listened. He went on about rising cost of living and the gahmen grabbing money from the sick/needy/elderly/students. The best part was how he co-related it back to himself all the time. Talking about the poor, or the HDB people or education, he could show that he also is suffering with the rest of us. But, again not a rousing speaker. Couldn't really get indifferent people there just to hear something to feel for him and jump up and down cheering.

Then comes this Chinese dude, I think its Melvin Tan. This is one funny fella. He talked as young as he looked. You know those kids in uni who stand up in Communications Skills lessons to give their presentation. The way they speak? Sometimes fast, when they're sure of what theyr'e saying. Sometimes slow, when they not so sure, always peeking at the notes? Yeah, this the fella. But it was comically entertaining.

One question he asked was particularly good "Is the Prime Minister governing the country? Or does the PM only govern PAP constituencies? So, does that mean that opposition ward residents can chew gum? Or no need serve NS?"

Then the 2 chicks. All the ah peks were practically cheering their voices hoarse for Glenda Han. As I said earlier, the chioest candidate around. The most stylish of course goes to Dr. Lily Neo, sophistication she epitomizes. Glenda's Mandarin was just fucking fantastic! Pronunciation and speed and all. And the people WANTED to listen, cos she's a woman la. The ah peks were bloody going wild over here at the far end. I was worried they gonna get a masturbating with the umbrellas they brought along [Flashback: Seedy theatres and RA films].

I like Glenda. She spoke about what problems SHE faced, as a young entrepreneur and all. And how it took so long for the gahmen to sort it out. But, of course the Singaporean attitude is contributing to the non-fast movement of the gahmen anyway.

Let's see, we go to a gahmen agency and say I want to do this and this and this. They say no. We take that no, get pissed cos of unfairness or we don't understand the logic and we go home and bitch about it to family and mates. Why don't we WRITE in to the papers about it? Why don't we speak to the MP about it? Why don't we not start a big fuck forum thread in one of the major forums about it? You think the gahmen doesn't read the internet? So, the next time you think the gahmen is fucking with u. Go make your complaints heard. Not sit and fume at home. Fuck la, they're human beings without ESP too right. If no one voices it out, how THEY gonna voice it out and change the ruling?

Lee Wai Leng was next. She was the most professional sounding one. However, I really couldn't stand anymore. I hate to stand, period. I don't do parades. I don't stand in queues. And even watching a sport, I have to sit. Leg, butt and back paining la.


My final thoughts while walking away from the big ass field, and people were still streaming in,w as that these guys had a point. However, what they don't have is a David Marshall or Lee Kuan Yew in their heyday to rouse the crowd. They should have cut the Mandarin and go straight for the Hokkien jugular. Cut the Tamil and Malay and go straight for Singlish. We really don't mind what you use to tell us, as long as your information is powderful enough to listen to.

Also, if the WP really wanted to score major points, these are my humble suggestions:

1. Ask your supporters to stop bunching up at the front of the stage area. For what? Split them up into groups of 10 and place them at periodic intervals througout the field. Folks are more likely to clap and cheer and get in the mood if the fella right next to them is doing it too.

2. Sell T-shirts. I am still kicking myself for not thinking of this idea. "You have a choice" / "I voted in the Singapore Elections" / "Pay And Pay"... just some of the offshoot ideas I came up with while standing there. 20,000 people can fit into that area like the Hougang rally. If only 2,000 people bought a tee at 5 bucks each. That's enough to almost cover one candidates' deposit.

3. Another area no one looked into but the freelance ice cream sellers was food. Damn, if I just had a ready supply of curry puffs to go around. I'd be 'working the ground' too. 1 dollar a puff man. Just get 5,000 puffs sold and I can relax for 2 months. Geddamit! This is what happens when you attend your first rally and you gotta wait 5 years for the next one to come around.

4. Distribute free party banners and flags. Do it WWE style. Set up innocent people to hold your party emblem. Call it communal publicity if you will. Like only the WP supporters had mini flags to wave around. So LC man. Give us all la. We surely wave also. Fun ma. Can keep as souvenier also ;)

5. Employ me to speak. I'm serious. Not to boast or anything. But damn, gimme this partisan crowd and I really can work wonders. Let me do the segments between speakers. The fella who just goes to the mike to rouse the crowd. If the Workers Party was trying to bring the image that they are the "friend to the people" and are "heartlanders" just like us, they really should shed this whole professional image. Be professional in your walkabouts. But talk like us man!

Oh well, I hope I can find time to attend the PAP one tomorrow. See how they fare. One thing about the PAP, their arrogance does bring about one good point. They're fuckin cock sure in what they say. The art of a salesman: Believe in your own product first.

Adieu! [Photos will be lifted from other blogs and posted tmrw]

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velisarios said...

Nice blog...Have a nice day from Athens Greece

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