Status: Intercultural insight with a Paki senior

Today is the day where I’m on an engagement with a Pakistani senior in the distant industrial suburb of Jurong east. God, he assured me that there would be a shuttle bus waiting at the train station to ferry humans to the desolate IMM building in the early morning. And he advised us to meet at MacDonald’s at 8.30 am sharp otherwise the very particular client would particularly hit the ceiling for being late.

The client can make a hole in the ceiling as I had no choice but to make my way to IMM on foot, with a laptop computer in tow. An IMM shuttle bus drove by, on its butt, in large orange letters wrote ‘Free Shuttle Service: 10am-10pm’. Thanks a million.

It was 9am when I reached MacDonald’s and there they were, the Pakistani senior and a fellow assistant 10. The Pakistani senior had a half eaten McMuffin in his hand while speaking to the assistant 10. I dumped my laptop on the ground and unapologetically apologised for my lateness. He said no problem and said he’s a 10 am person just that the manager would give him a morning call to check up on him.  

Just like Borat, he looks funny(as in odd) and smells funny(as in weird). But I can never imagine he could talk funny(as in humour) too!

At the client’s, while we little assistant 10’s are busy with our tasks, the Pakistani senior had a phone call from the manager. We nearly fell off our chairs when he assured the manager most of the tests are done. For the love of god and all other divine beings, I was still struggling to calculate the sample size and awaiting the accountant to extract the information. He told me to economise on time after seeing that the tests are mostly not done. My fellow assistant 10 and I were speechless.

At lunch, he started talking about how boring the DT night out at Zouk was. He’s puzzled by the locals’ sense of fun. The grub was substandard and inadequate, he can’t booze because he’s Muslim and there’s no one interesting to talk to because they’re quietly getting themselves drunk. That’s totally unlike in the US where the drunks just let everything loose, clothes and all. He’s also puzzled by the locals’ sense of humour. When the DJ asked what the 5 core principles of DT were, everyone laughed. I would laugh too, at them for their poor sense of humour.

Then the DJ asked what’s the most important thing to DT and it begins with the letter ‘I’. No one dared to answer the DJ because probably it’s not in the textbook. So this gungho Pakistani senior went up to the the DJ and the DJ had an arm around him and repeated the question again. Of course the correct answer would be ‘Integrity‘, like duh. But this Paki…oooh, one can never guess that Pakis can be a hilarious lot… he grabbed the mic and said with full confidence. “It’s ‘Insomnia’ !”

No one at the party laughed.

Oh my god, I was slapping the table when he told this to us. I mean, that’s what I call witticism man!!! No word can be more right than ‘Insomnia’ ! Without insomnia, audits cannot be finished on time. Without insomnia, the time budget would have burst all the time.

Between mouthfuls of briyani, he told us that he had a cook and 3 cars back in Pakistan and how lazy and fat the women are in his family. The Bellucci voluptuousness is fine but when he meant fat, it’s really fatass fat. His theory is that in Muslim law, the punishment for an adulterous married person is beheading. That’s why the married woman has no worries of losing their spouse and could get as fat as she wants since her husband does not wish to risk losing his head. He also complains of the ‘crazy’ mullahs that ban literary works of Rumi and other romantic poets and how a religion is lost through fear. People follow all the rituals because they’re afraid of punishment. But when the enormous fear is removed, say when the mullahs turn to hippies, the people may find themselves quite lost after being ingrained to the years of following meaningless rituals. Fear of punishment was the reason why they keep to the rules. And now that the fear is gone, what reason can they find to give meaning to the things that they’re supposed to do?

But this Pakistani senior says he still chose to bang his head on the ground 5 times a day anyway(performing the daily prayers, salat).

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2 Comments

Filed under Revelations on work

2 responses to “Status: Intercultural insight with a Paki senior

  1. Rong

    dearie, i’ve updated my blog finally!!! yipe!

    I’m glad u found someone with the kind of wittiness that u enjoy most! 😉 i’ve managed to exasperate my AM rather well today. he’s almost speechless by the time he left. haha… see you in office next week k? i’ll visit u at the filling room.

  2. xinyi

    hahaha! this entry is damn funny!! your snr is pretty nice & so funny lah! hahahaha.. i’ll email u girls tml k! =)

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