I Am A Victim Of O$P$

July 11, 2009 at 13:26 6 comments

Look what happened to my front door last night!!!


OK, in Singapore, this is what happens when loan sharks – colloquially known as Ah Long – go after people for money. Traditional practices include splashing red paint on people’s front doors (as mine very clearly illustrates), leaving a pig’s head (now rarely done; I believe they are not cheap), or writing O$P$ (‘owe money pay money’ distilled to basic principles), which they also did here.


This, written on the stairwell wall, cited an address that was not ours, but a few doors down. Yes, living in Singapore costs an arm and a leg. But no, Mr. Manx and I have no truck with Ah Longs. What good is it borrowing from sharks to pay piranhas? We figured that this was a new Ah Long technique of forcing the loaner’s neighbours to pressurize the fella to pay. Either that, or the paint splasher was severely dyslexic.

The paint was very fresh when we discovered it at sometime past ten last night. If we hadn’t been taking pictures of the neighbourhood cats downstairs, there’s a good chance we’d have caught the bugger red-handed (hur hur), but on the whole, I’m kinda glad we didn’t.

We called the neighbourhood police, and two officers arrived about half an hour later. After taking a statement and taking some official pictures, the younger one, Officer Hooknose, told us that there’d been one identical report before ours. Someone else in the vicinity had just had the same thing happen to them, and the writing on their wall looked very similar to the writing on ours. We told them that other walls in our block had been similarly defaced over the past few months, such as the one in our ground-floor lift lobby. A fresh coat of paint always miraculously appears in a few days, but the writing is still visible.


There are at least three such messages on our floor now, also painted over, but still readable.

Despite the lateness of the hour, neighbours from the same floor began popping up to see what was going on. Everyone had the same reaction upon seeing the thick red dripping and puddling at our door. *Psycho music* (*Jaws theme also can*)


But once they’d realized that Mr. Manx and I had not been stabbing each other, they were very sympathetic. They told us that the current tenants of the publicly-named unit had gotten the same treatment a few months ago. These tenants had not borrowed any money from the Ah Long either – they were foreigners here to seek medical treatment for their young son. They gave the contact information of the actual unit owner to the older Officer Grumpy, whose night took a turn for the worse upon dialling the number, because all he got was shouted at by the woman who replied. Apparently her point of view was that her affairs were none of his business, which was a stupid stance to take in the circumstances, if you ask me. After finishing with Officer Grumpy, the woman said she wanted to talk to Mr. Manx. She swore that she knew nothing about any Ah Long, and expressed the hope that we would not pursue the matter. <Roll eyes>

The next thing that happened was that Officer Grumpy was taken to task by one of the neighbours for the failure of the police to do anything about the whole affair even though it had been going on for some time. I must say that he had a point, because there are cameras on the ground floor and in all the lifts (though goodness knows if they are anything more than plastic toys put there for decor). However, I thought his timing unwise, considering that he had a nearly-empty bottle of San Miguel in his hand and that he stood within reeking distance. I felt quite sorry for Officer Grumpy.

The strangest thing about last night was that it resulted in us talking to the neighbours for the first time since we moved in about five years ago. Not kidding. They seem quite nice. Very different from household to household.

I do wonder what’s going to happen about this vandalism. I must admit that I have fantasies about giving the clown what he deserves with a hardwood baseball bat and a box of long pins. Piece of cowdung.

On the bright side, I now have a very unique front door. All it needs now is a wooden plaque that says Dracula’s Keep, and I’m all ready for Halloween. 


Entry filed under: Dear Diary. Tags: , .

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6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. wedoryn  |  July 11, 2009 at 16:39

    It’s actually pretty cool leh. As long as this is the only time it happens and it doesn’t mess up the real furniture. Now you are a ton more Singaporean than I am.

    • 2. Katie  |  July 12, 2009 at 10:28

      My bro and his creative thinking. :) I volunteer to draw on your door if you would like to enhance your heritage!

  • 3. Monty  |  July 12, 2009 at 05:18

    gosh. It must have been a mixture of surrealness and fright. Who in their wildest imaginations would think this would happen to them.

    On the other hand, this is the first time I have actually seen your front door.

    • 4. Katie  |  July 12, 2009 at 10:27

      That is true. And it actually looks a bit like a McDonald’s ad, doesn’t it?

  • 5. NoW!S  |  July 13, 2009 at 20:59

    Wah, are you gonna keep it like that? Hang a few cobwebs and torn drapes over it for added effect! :p

    • 6. Katie  |  July 18, 2009 at 14:47

      As I type, there’s a painting guy here to take a look. Think the door varnish is gone case. Sigh.


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Welcome to my blog!

My blog-name is Katie but I will not respond if you call me that in real life because it's not my real name. Yes, I do practise virtual-world paranoia. No, I do not enjoy stalkers. But I do enjoy writing and having folks reading said writing, so welcome to my world. It's nice to meet you.

Playing in my head over and over again argh

I'll Have To Say I Love You In A Song (Jim Croce)

Book(s) of the moment

Hogfather (Terry Pratchett)

Books read in 2010 and 2011

Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows (JK Rowling) - 'cos the movie's coming out!
Frankenstein: Lost Souls (Dean Koontz) - ah, bugger, it's part of a series! Now I hafta find all the books...
Dismantled (Jennifer McMahon) - oh, good one
Tigerlily's Orchids (Ruth Rendell)
Shutter Island (Dennis LeHane) - reminds me too much of work
Holy Fools (Joanne Harris) - it's official: I prefer her scary books
A Series of Unfortunate Events; The Unauthorized Autobiography; The Beatrice Letters (Lemony Snicket)
The Little Friend (Donna Tartt)
The main books - 11 so far - of the Southern Vampire series; the Aurora Teagarden series except for A Fool & His Honey - that makes it 7; Sweet & Deadly (Charlaine Harris)
The Woman in Black (Susan Hill)
Full Dark, No Stars (Stephen King)
Room: A Novel (Emma Donaghue)
Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children (Ransom Riggs)
The Bachman Books (Stephen King)
Men At Arms (Terry Pratchett)
Carpe Jugulum (Terry Pratchett)
The Fifth Elephant (Terry Pratchett)
Beauty (Robin McKinley)
The Sandman, Vol 1 (Neil Gaiman)
The Burden (Agatha Christie) - her crime novels are waaay better
Snuff (Terry Pratchett)

Visit my photoblog!

I started my first photoblog on 3 May, 2009. Each post features one picture, with a little story of how it came about. Do take a look by clicking on: Manx Pictures
July 2009
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Disclaimers: 1) I cannot help but bitch about work sometimes, but everything here comes under the realm of personal remarks, and nothing here is said in my professional capacity. Nor does anything here reflect the opinion of the institutions that employ me. This is just me shooting off. 2) Most identities have been anonymized, particularly those of folks I know on a personal basis. Same goes for my workplaces. However, commercial and public places and figures remain named. Otherwise some things just wouldn't make sense. 3) Links and sources have been provided where appropriate and possible. They are not meant to challenge anyone's ownership. If this causes any discomfort or offence, please let me know.


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