Grocery shopping

It turns out that Monday is the night when Cold Storage is out of roast beef and regular bacon, and then you have to buy the Danish streaky bacon, which isn't so more expensive as it's more streaky than you'd planned. However, they do have the right boursin cheese as well, and the idea of coming home to a sinfully white cream pasta sauce tomorrow night makes the whole week sound much more promising than it did this morning --- which began unpropitiously with me waking up at 7 and feeling scratchily like the airconditioning had been off all night, when in fact it had only been off for the usual hour (it goes off when T wakes up).

No, the real problem with Cold Storage on this Monday night was that they were playing The World's Most Annoying Cover Versions, sung by The Guy Who Tries To Harmonize With Himself Even Though His Singing Is Completely Flat. It almost drove me out of the store.

Speaking of annoying things on the public address system that drive you crazy, behold my feedback to the SMRT (the local subway company):
Today I heard for the first time what must be your new "public service announcements": an annoying and loud musical jingle broadcast over the train's PA system, followed by an even more annoying woman's voice carping in Singlish about something or other, before she's rebutted by a male voice, and then the two of them go back and forth like a pair of squabbling neighbours (or perhaps squabbling chickens, it's hard to tell) for about thirty seconds.

It took me a while to deduce that the "announcements" were trying to remind passengers of the importance of the following:
1) Don't hold your newspaper too wide and take up other people's personal space
2) Don't read over another person’s shoulder
3) Don't sit on the floor
4) Don't shove your butt into someone else's face
5) Don't make too much noise on the train

I also deduce from the stunned expressions around me that it was the first time a number of passengers had heard these "announcements". Significantly, most passengers, like me, also looked more annoyed than they had been before the "announcement" started.

I understand that SMRT repeatedly reminds its passengers of the need to keep the trains clean, not to eat and drink on the trains, and certainly to be wary of suspicious objects. But don't you find it deeply ironic that these ear-splitting "announcements" shatter the very quiet that they aim to uphold? I almost snorted out loud when I discerned the portion where the man's voice asks the woman to be quiet so that he can read, because I had just been reading peacefully for most of my train ride, only to have the intrusive announcement break my concentration with the crackling loud music and harsh discordant voices.

Furthermore, I highly doubt if these "announcements" serve their purpose. Recalcitrant and inconsiderate passengers would hardly bother to listen closely and discern the real message behind your cryptic "announcements". They would simply continue talking loudly or continue with whatever other inconsiderate behaviour they are displaying.

I strongly hope that SMRT will cease using these "announcements" immediately. The "old-fashioned" announcements, though monotonous, were sufficient to meet their purposes. Most commuters who take the train regularly don't need fancy or sophisticated advertising jingles to catch their attention. They just want a bit of peace, quiet and predictability so that they can travel peacefully from one destination to the next, and possibly catch up on their sleep or homework or reading if they need to.

I personally hate taking the bus nowadays because so many of them have that annoying TVMobile installed and you can't avoid the racket it produces no matter where you sit on the bus. The train is the last relatively quiet mode of transportation still available in Singapore. Don't ruin what little quiet space is left to us commuters.

I look forward to receiving your reply and to the discontinuation of these dreadful "announcements".
I don't mean to turn this into an Angry Blog like T's, but seriously, those inane "public service announcements" just cheesed me off.

However, to bring this post back on-topic, we do now have Earl Grey tea. So I'm going to go drink some of it.