I came across this article written eloquently by Dr Chan J Y. Dr Chan’s article is here. He was commenting on an ATM slip he came across. Still about 10 days to end of the month – meaning payday and the ATM slip shows a “malnourished” bank account. Unfortunately, he did not delve deeper into the subject.
Let me continue with the subject matter. Dr Chan has cultivated a penchant for sniffing out discarded ATM slips near to ATM machines to peek at the unknown owners’ miserable bank accounts to confirm his instinctive recognition that cross sections of our struggling fellow countrymen living precariously from hand to mouth on a month to month paycheck!
I have followed Dr Chan’s blog for quite some time. I notice that he used to mention often about his secret fetish for throwaway ATM slips. He is certainly a bad influence on me. I’m also addicted to this unique hobby.
Out of 10 pieces of discarded ATM slips near to the ATM machine, nearly all have malnourished miserable bank balances. Don’t believe me? Do yourself a great favor by checking it out yourself. Take up this free hobby to learn more about our struggling heartlanders.
An intelligent person or rather a discerning investigator will know that an innocuously looking discarded ATM slip belonging to someone could reveal more truth than the tons of money and resources invested so far in a national conversation.
That begs the question – what is the ultimate purpose of a national conversation? Why spend so much time talking to citizens to find out what they really want?
My simple answer to such a big question is that we just want to lead a better life for ourselves, our aged parents and our children in this country we call home. This country belongs to all of us – not any partisan party or individuals. The Chinese saying ＂我们都要过好日子！＂sums it all.
Whether it is now, 5 years’ time, 10 or 20 years from now, we just want to live the good life we used to enjoy in our parents’ era. From the late 1960s to the late 1980s – about 20 years in our short glorious history, which in my opinion is our golden era. That is the kind of good life we wish to have in future. Do you not agree with me?
Just like forensic science, all the clues found at the scene of crime will never lie. The perpetual truth, nothing but the whole truth found at the crime scene is hidden all over only waiting to be unraveled. That discarded ATM slip is an excellent piece of evidence to unravel the truth of a typical faceless heartlander – the pain, hopelessness, dismal prospects, agony, emptiness at every end of the month. Multiply that piece of ATM slip a hundred times, a thousand times or tens of thousands to delve further and probe deeper into the very heart of the cynisim and skepticism – the bank account which is the purse string of his livelihood and preoccupation!
ATM slips will never lie. ATM slips will tell the whole truth. The truth will not get filtered or watered down. The facts reveal from those discarded ATM slips are harsh and jarring to the ears but they are the truth crying out for divine intervention. It is the key to unlock the mysterious mindset of the massive heartlanders which I believe is the main target of this so-called national conversation.
Heed the warnings before it’s too late. Before the bitterness and disappointment synergise each other into a frenzy and implode, shattering the seemingly calmness when the undercurrents are always there waiting for the opportune moment to turn awry.