Monday, June 24, 2013

The real hard truths and the real friends!!

It's quite the first time that I stayed indoors like a homely little good girl for so long ever since I past 16 years old. It's like 2 whole weeks that I never go out because of the haze which is still plaguing Singapore up till now; just that it's not as serious now. PSI average below 100 or at most less than 150 for yesterday and today. Very glad. It was between 200 to 400 for the past few days and seriously I was frantic. Because I am asthmatic(although very mild) but I was hospitalized last year because of bronchitis. I'm very very sensitive to bacteria, unclean air and easily suffer coughing and sinus. And soooo........I was desperately looking for simply normal disposable masks as well as the N95 masks. And really, at this difficult times, you really can see deep into the conscience and the heart of many people around. Friends, strangers, various department stores, private clinics, government hospitals and of course, my very own GOVERNMENT.

It's really very heart dampening, even chilling at times and I really dont wish to get upset all over again.

Just wish to share this entry of my dear friend, Lin. I can save time blogging about the whole episode then. Kekeke!

efatrieDid The Haze Erode Our Moral Values?

Have not been blogging because I had a week-long fever, only to recover to a very bad haze :(

Didn't expect the haze condition to deteriorate so quickly. And amidst this "crisis", I experienced different faces of "human nature".

As I was pregnant, but I could not get any N95 mask (even when the PSI hiked to 400). We could only managed to buy surgical mask the day before, so it was Me+Beanie+Surgical mask against the haze lol.

Yesterday morning, I was commenting on my friend's facebook that I also wanted to buy a N95 mask, and this "friend" of his actually PM me on facebook.

I remember seeing on newspaper the prices for 20 pcs of mask, which probably cost about $20 pre-haze period. I was so shocked at him, blatantly quoting such a high price - FROM A RE-SELLER.

And what irks me was that he said "THIS IS BUSINESS". This is not a damn business!! I cannot fathom how people will want to profit from a somewhat "national crisis". Didn't the govt urge us to stay united, and look out for one another?

I didn't reply him after "scolding" him as above, and he apologized for messaging me, and even wished me a good day ahead.

I got so angry that I posted the screenshot on my facebook and instagram, and 1 of my friends misunderstood, thinking 20 pcs of face masks are going at $20, messaged me and wanted to buy.

That was when I told her he is selling 20 pcs at $75. She was also outraged and sent the screenshot to Stomp.

After he realised he was on Stomp, he still had the cheek to "question" "accuse" me.

HAHAHA. Through one of my friend's comment, I was also feeling amused that he was using the word karma. I don't believe in karma but I had to resist thinking that karma might return and bite him in his backside.

And because I am pregnant, I am very sensitive towards such "cursing". Cannot believe how can such a youngster's moral value be so degraded.

Did the haze erode our moral values?

I kept pondering the entire day if I had been very harsh towards him by posting on facebook and instagram. And I also felt very sorry towards my friend, since this idiot is under his friend's list.

However, I realised, if he wanted to compare his masks (probably bought before price hike) vs the masks that were restocked recently, I probably can relate the higher retailing prices to urgent shipment or freight cost.

But what rights does he have to impose a "surcharge" and benefitting entirely for his own gain? Seriously, a profit of $10 or $30 per box of masks, what can he do with that? Like that also happy?

After thinking through the entire day, I decided to blog about this. I managed to screenshot the last part of the conversation only this morning. And realised he disappeared from facebook (or he switched to private user).

LOOK! If he has done nothing wrong, why does he need to disappear? DUH.

Still so arrogant!

I cannot understand the mindset of such people. And he is not the only one doing that, when I heard other people's friends selling at similar prices. Even those medicinal halls or mama shops are doing the same..

Is there anything that the govt or CASE can do to such individuals or retailers in this urgent situation?


At this difficult times, it's clear to see friends in need are friends indeed. In olden times, we call it 雪中送炭 。 At this very moment, we call this 雾中送Masks!! Appreciate so much! Dear Kat drove by to pass me some disposable masks, although she tried to find N95 masks for me at KAP cold storage but to no valid. I'm really really touched.

Ken and Karen also drove by to pass me N95 masks, which Karen bought at staff price from her clinic. I appreciate so very much!

I said I wanted to pick up from these guardian angels of mine at their houses but they said they will just drive by since they stayed very close to me. There are also many friends who gave me contacts to buy from who-and-who and also friends who offered to buy me buy too, but the masks really got out of stock too damn fast. And friends who finally got their very limited stocks are still so kind to offer me 1 or 2 from their own supply(by then I already got mine). It's so heart-warming and I'll forever remember who lend me a helping hand, especially when I'm at my most desperate times. Friends like this are hard to come by. It's not difficult to have friends around you at happy times but at catastrophic times, it's another story altogether. Sometimes it's about money, sometimes, it's more than that. Because we all know, at this difficult time, even money cant get you the masks you want!

True enough, it's really very disappointing that our government didnt do anything during this chaotic time. They didnt issue free masks to use in an orderly manner in advance. And because they didnt, masks supply and demand got out of control, with selfish and greedy people buying in BULK and then over-pricing them to make a quick and handsome profit from our country people. And people buy, because we have no choice. People with asthma like me, pregnant people like Lin. But of course, we're adamant to buy from him and to quote Lin's words, "I'll rather die than to buy from him." Eventually she got hers from a friend and a good friend of mine help me to buy from her clinic at staff price. Ironically, even her clinic, supposedly a medical institution, sells per mask at S$5, which is S$100 for a box of 20.

All Singaporeans were also frantically buying purifiers from major stores as well as online merchants, especially the latter who were also jacking up prices. Because the air was seriously very bad at 1 point. I woke up to a smoky room(air-conditioned) and my eyes were so stung that they were red and teary. =(
Even I had no choice but to place order for a S$660 air purifier from an online merchant, there was no stock. will be coming in by the end of this week. I reckon it's more consoling and...reasonable to so-call buy an expensive air purifier(which I was guaranteed that it works better than other models outside because it traps dust particulars as small as 0.01mircons instead of 0.1-0.3), THAN to buy over-priced masks which actually costs around S$1 on normal days. 

It wasnt until midway through this crisis that our government supply 9million more masks to the local hospitals BUT NOT TO US. What the HELL?? And the hospitals didnt sell it cheaply either. At around S$65 per box from Tan Tock Seng hospital, how can those poor folks afford it?? Private clinics are selling at S$5 or S$6 per mask(around S$100 for a box) and some greedy business owners even up it further at S$10 per mask which is like S$200 per box. 

Profit can easily range from few thousands to ten plus thousands, depending on how much they bought in. Conscience is real cheap. But if I know any shop or clinic which did such thing, I'm sure to boycott it in the future. FYI, for the prices of N95 masks, NTUC and Unity S$2.25, Watson $2.50, Tan Tock Seng Govt Hospital S$3, other greedy arbitraguers S$3 to S$4, private clinics S$5 to S$6, Ultra greedy business shop owners S$7 to S$10. To think government bodies and medical institutions can also sell so expensive like greedy businessman. Shame on you!

And even when the PSI past 400, which was the life-threatening stage, the government did not issue any stop-work order and those poor construction workers still had to work outdoors at long hours. They might be humble foreign workers but we have a heart. We really hope they can stop work and stop inhaling those unhealthy air, without having pay cut. However, still no stop-school or stop-work order.

When kind organization and people start to give out free masks, only did our government did the same, by supplying only to those with low incomes. It's really shameful. It's only when people step in to help, only then they feel they ought to do something so as not to make things look too ugly on them.

*shakes head*

I really wish Singaporeans can open their eyes bigger, if they were previously being closed earlier during the election. 


  1. how many rich people make their money with conscience? its during turbulent times like financial crisis, health crisis where the sharpest and fastest take advantage of the situation. 危机-有危才有机, hasnt that been the way things are since ancient chinese times and hence the word?

    im not saying that what they are doing is ethical and moral but how is it any worse off than say DBS high note 5, where there is deceit involved. its simply supply and demand. when demand outstripes supply, prices go up. i dont see u saying anything about the crazy car and housing prices.

  2. I understand the theory about supply and demand, and of course I understand not everyone holds their moral and ethic values with priority as opposed to easy quick cash. Nobody said it's wrong or it's against the law. So long so you can sleep well with it, then it's really up to you.

    Oh I'm in the finance industry and I've never like bankers, because of "these" reasons. I've seen many despicable bankers who lied through their teeth. As for the crazy COE prices and housing, I'm definitely feeling it like 90% of the Singaporeans. The reason why I'm feeling especially worked up about these N95 masks because it has to do with HEALTH. When PSI cross beyond 400, it's actually "life threatening" by standards. While there are many many things in Sg which were beyond unfairness, jacking up prices for a essential, possible life-saving product at such a time simply packs a harder punch in me.

    A friend's friend's grandfather passed away from lung cancer after battling it for several years during the haze period. It might be or might not be because of the haze. But to put it simply, if you're purposely jacking up a price for something which may indirectly save a person's life, then I feel it's abit too much.