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Government servant? Chill, have a root beer

Haresh Says, as published in Malay Mail today.


This is in no way trying to poke fun or ridicule our civil service.
However, it does not help that several black sheep within government agencies and ministries tend to be bosses, even at times trying to outdo their ministers.
As a journalist I have come across interesting civil servants, some of whom have been extremely professional in their dealings.
But I met a sports journalist last week who said a particular civil servant “owned Malaysian sports”.
“He is even more powerful than Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin,” the reporter said sarcastically.
I could only smile.
There also those who are known to abuse their positions.
Bukit Aman Commercial Crime Investigation Department deputy director (intelligence and operations) Datuk Abdul Jalil Hassan said police are looking for a key member of a syndicate involved in fake work permits, believed to be an Immigration Department officer. 
This jogs my memory of an incident that happened slightly over a decade ago in Shah Alam. I was involved in an accident and while dealing with the other motorist, a woman appeared out of nowhere demanding that I pay the other driver.
I asked: “And you are?”
Her instant reply: “I am a government servant!”
Oh please!
The word SERVANT is there for a reason, to serve the people. I hope such unwarranted attitude will not demoralise professional officials within the service.
To those who lord around despite signing off “saya yang menurut perintah”; chill and have a root beer!

A&W root beers are the best

Those who grew up watching Dastardly and Muttley in Their Flying Machines, Thundercats, Voltron, He-Man and The Care Bears would remember enjoying a chilled glass of root beer at A&W.
The fast food chain was a hit for those who grew up in the 70s and 80s as the fast-food outlet at Jalan Sultan in Petaling Jaya (picture above) was iconic.
Opened in 1965, the restaurant was featured in several local movies including 1970 hit Gelora, starring the late Tan Sri P. Ramlee and Sarimah.
Memories came racing back following news that the building will make way for the development of two office towers valued at RM263 million next year. Such emotions are shared through the Facebook page ‘Save Iconic A&W’ set up recently.
It is no secret that A&W, despite boasting its ever popular root beer and coney dogs, have struggled to keep up with their rivals but franchise owner KUB Malaysia was recently quoted revealing the fast-food chain made a net profit of RM1.89 million last year.
It was also reported the outlet will be shut down temporarily and that the new restaurant will be housed within the new office blocks, complete with drive-through services.
It remains to be seen if the developers will retain the simplicity yet warm atmosphere A&W lovers have enjoyed over the years. 
But one thing is for sure, the number of times A&W has been mentioned in this column and all over the media, and the overwhelming support it has received has placed the company in the limelight, promising higher returns at the end of this year.

Memories last forever

The central processing unit (CPU) of my ever reliable desktop finally gave way. I was devastated as it has been a reliable tool over the past eight years, faster and more dependable than some of the fancy touch screen computers I have used in recent times.
A trip to my regular computer shop was met with a smile. Melvin, who often attends to my computing needs, told me I had to let go with the mentality that things tend to last forever.
“Bro, if a computer can last for more than five years these days, considered as bonus leh,” he said.
“The quality is not there. Even if you buy a more expensive machine, it will perhaps give you an additional year or maybe two, if you’re lucky. That’s technology, the faster it processes, the faster it will kong (dies).”
I believe the same can be said about every other item built today.
The only thing that lasts forever are memories — of playing Hitman: Blood Money on my then spanking brand new desktop and browsing the internet using IE (Internet Explorer).
The same would be said about eating at the iconic A&W restaurant in Petaling Jaya, as many celebrated their birthdays there and interactors and prefects from nearby schools planned their annual International Understand Day and gatherings there.
Even memories of interacting with peculiar government servants will linger.
And for those who have lost someone — either on the streets of Gaza, the downing of Flight MH17 or the missing Flight MH370 — the good memories they shared with their loved will be stored in their hearts and minds forever.

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