My mother always says that people are a generally unhappy lot. Given half a chance, they’ll find something to complain about. “See,” she would add, “my very observation about the human condition is a complaint! It’s a vicious cycle! Which reminds me, I must go scold Cook. My God, that congee she made for your father’s breakfast! Who taught her to cook?” she would wonder, completely oblivious to the fact that she had been the one who’d taught Cook to cook.
I’m always reading Facebook posts about how we should try to get through one single day without complaining. When Saffy first read that on Sharyn’s wall, she commented – on that very post – that it was the stupidest thing she’d read all day. That comment scored 16 Likes which pleased Saffy no end.
Of course, misery loves company which is why Facebook is always full with complaints. My cousin Darryl fills his wall with posts about the traffic jams he’s stuck in, which makes me wonder how he ever gets any work done if he’s always on a road somewhere and never in an office. It all got too boring, so I blocked him the other day, which then freed up some Facebook space for other friends moaning about the cost of groceries, tuition, COE and taxis.
“If you keep blocking people, you’re going to end up with no friends!” Amanda told me.
“Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing,” I said. “Everyone is so unhappy!”
“Maybe you need to purge all your Facebook friends and start all over again?”
“Oh God, no!” I moaned. “Do you know how long that would take? And then people will get upset that I’ve not responded to their friend request!”
“That’s what you’re worried about?” Amanda asked. “Listen, at last count, I had about 68 requests and I have every intention of ignoring them all!”
“But that’s so rude!”
“Whatever!” sniffed Amanda, Runner-Up Miss Caring and Sharing.
The past few days, everyone has been complaining about the rain. The taxi drivers hate it because they get stuck in slower moving traffic. Commuters hate it because they can’t get taxis. Office workers hate it because they arrive at the office all soggy. Dog owners hate it because they can’t bring their dogs out to pee.
“Roscoe is leaking all over the house!” Karen complained on Facebook, to which Saffy wrote, “That’s no way to speak about your husband!” This got 12 Likes which really made Saffy’s day, but it also got her a private message from Karen complaining that this was no joking matter.
Saffy picked up the phone and called. “Can’t he just pee in the bathroom?” she asked.
“Cannot, lah! He’s been trained never to pee in the house, so the poor dear is bravely holding it in!”
“I’m no dog expert,” Saffy said, “but it’s a very wet accident waiting to happen, if you ask me!”
“I really wish it would just stop raining!” Karen sighed. “It rains every afternoon just when I have to take Roscoe out!”
“You can’t take him out earlier?”
“He doesn’t need to go then!”
“He doesn’t need to go then!”
“I know, just don’t give him anything to drink!” Saffy said brightly. “That way he won’t need to pee!”
A few minutes later, Karen posted on Facebook that some people are really very stupid, to which Saffy wrote, “Who are you talking about? Tell! Tell!”
A few days ago, Amanda emerged from a very refreshing massage at her regular sight-impaired masseuse in Commonwealth to find that the heavens had opened up to a cracking thunderstorm.
“Oh my God! What is going on with this rain?” she cried into the wall of torrential downpour.
Grace stepped up alongside, cracking her knuckles. “Ay, you want umbrella?” she asked.
“I have an umbrella,” Amanda pouted, staring with great dissatisfaction at the fat drops of water. “But it’s my shoes that I’m worried about. They’re Christian Louboutins! They simply cannot get wet!”
Grace peered myopically at Amanda’s feet. “Maybe you wait till the rain stop?” she asked.
“I can’t! I have a manicure appointment in ten minutes!”
But Amanda didn’t come top in her year at Harvard law just for her Prada wardrobe. She rummaged through Grace’s pantry. A minute later, she had tied a Cold Storage bag tightly around each Louboutin-clad foot.
“Hah?” Grace said. “Are you sure?”
“Shut up, Grace. I thought you couldn’t see?”
“This one no need to see. Can hear!”
As luck would have it, Sharyn was coming out of Sheng Siong when she spotted Amanda squelching noisily up the road towards the taxi stand. Within seconds, a picture of Amanda’s footwear protection was on Facebook. It got 50 Likes and was Shared five times.
“This is GOLD!” Saffy posted.