Monday, October 23, 2006

Hawker Stall Peddlers

Yesterday we had dinner at the usual hawker stall. The thing about Malaysian hawker stalls are it's always crowded with table-to-table peddlers who are trying to sell you illegal goods like jewelry and watches. To some, this might be a good thing. To me however, I despise the crap out of them.

Take this scene for example. There you are enjoying your greasy chinese food and out of nowhere, a guy nudges you from behind and asks, "This one veli cheap watches, veli good plice I tiau you!" Your appetite immediately becomes as spoiled as the peddler's English.

I basically just ignore them but it's awkward to have them stare at you while you stuff your face. It feels like you're eating for the sake of keeping your mouth full and occupied. After a while, they'll get the message and move on but then you realise that you just swallowed half of your dinner. Sigh. I mean honestly, what response were they expecting?:

"I came to this food centre searching for a handbag and I must say the service here is terrible. You are 10 minutes late. Yes I'd like the blue one, please."

Sounds like there's a whole new reason for going to a hawker stall:

(Discussing about dinner)
Mum:
I need to get me a new purse and Lim Restaurant peddlers sells the cheapest ones.

Dad: Actually I was thinking of Yap Restaurant. I have to return this pair of ripped jeans the damn Vietnamese peddler sold me.
Mum: But this RM5 voucher for Lim Restaurant expires tomorrow. Please, dear.
Dad: Fine, Lim Restaurant it is. We could eat there too, you know.
Mum: Oh, ok.

3 comments:

FireHorse

Wah! Is this a new development or what? I have never been approached by these peddlers before. Hmmm wouldn't mind buying a handbag and a watch or two while slurping up my Hokkien Mee. This is what I call multitasking. Imagine it'll be kinda like when you go for dim sum, in the midst of eating the food carts keep coming around and if you see something you like while stuffing your face, you can just point.

-=[W]=

I'm in complete agreement with Sewjin on this. When I was in KL, I couldn't rememeber a time when I wasn't approached by a peddler whilst eating out in hawker places. Strangely enough I never got any trying to unload handbags or watches but nearly all of them were shilling DVDs and VCDs.

Alright, admittedly, I bought two DVDs from them simply because I'd been trying to get my hands on them for some time. However, this was outweighed by the fact that they annoyed the hell out of me by interrupting my meal.

One particularly persistent peddler, who couldn't get a sale even after showing me his entire collection of movies for sale, made a last-ditch attempt by removing some special VCDs out of his pocket which were upon closer inspection what many would determine as being "blue" films or as the terribly blunt would put it; Pornography. It certainly raised some eyebrows around the table but I could imagine how it'd ruin the appetite of others.

If I wanted bang-for-a-buck stuff peddled in my face, I'd rather go to them when I need to or feel compelled to do so.

hellfried

worse are the very young people trying sell you crap to fund some charitable cause. they will pull out all sorts of pictures and poorly printed but laminated pieces of paper with some grand sounding name printed on it.
i have also come across some people in a buddhist monk's saffron robe with a begging bowl. recently some head honcho in the some buddhist monastery came out in the press and said that real monks will never ask for money. they should only ask for food.

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