I Want To Smack Telekom Malaysia

On February 1, Wuan and I went to TMpoint at Ampang Point to do several things. First was to cancel my phone account in Penang, second to disconnect Wuan’s phone here, third to apply for a phone here under my name and get the OKU entitlement (waiver of monthly rental), cancel Wuan’s Streamyx account and finally apply for a Streamyx 1.0Mbps OKU Package for RM66/month. The service counter was on the upper floor and Wuan had to go up by herself to do the necessary while I waited at the ground floor.

The counter staff told Wuan that we do not need to go through the hassles of cancelling and opening accounts. We could apply for the discount for Wuan’s existing phone account by filling up some forms, submitting our ICs, my Kad Kenal Diri OKU and our marriage certificate. At the same time, we could apply for an upgrade to Wuan’s Streamyx the same way. We did not have the last item with us, so the staff gave us an email address and fax number for us to send the marriage certificate to which we duly did when we got back home.

Nothing happened after a few days’ wait. I spoke to three persons at Telekom Malaysia’s call centre but they could not do anything. Wuan and I went to TMPoint again to enquire on February 11. I waited in the car as we could not find a parking space. The same staff who served Wuan previously attended to her again. He said he did not receive the marriage certificate and worst of all, he could not locate the forms that we submitted. So we started the application process all over again.

On March 3, I Twittered about the predicament of having to wait for so long and the Streamyx account still not upgraded. Pierce of blog.kuchingfest.com got @TMCorp to respond to my complaint. In fact Pierce had given me the email address of the CEO of TMNet earlier but I told him I did not want to escalate the issue so high up yet. Perhaps, I should have, to save myself from so much grief. I provided details to @TMCorp via direct message and someone called Wuan to check the next day. I had expected the matter to be resolved by yesterday looking at how long our applications were not attended to. Nothing happened.

After nearly 1 month from the second time we submitted the application and still did not get an upgrade, I got impatient and Twittered about it again today. Pierce picked up the matter and directed it to En. Rahimi Jalaluddin from Business Development at TM Consumer. En. Rahimi gave me his contacts via Facebook. I called to provide him with the details which he promised to look into and get back to me by tomorrow. Hopefully, it will be resolved soonest possible. Thanks Pierce. I owe you one. Pierce also put up an entry on this issue here. It is a pity that I need to go so high up to get attention to my complaint. What if it is someone else who do not know somebody who knows somebody high up at TM? How is he going to get his issue resolved.

Update: March 13, 2010
The technician finally came to install the modem at 8pm. Everything seems to be running fine now. Thanks to En. Rahimi of TM Consumer and Pierce for expediting the process. Much appreciated.

Ang Pao – Red Envelope

Citibank ang pao - red envelope
Citibank ang pao – red envelope for the Year of the Tiger 2010.

In the olden days, ang pao were actually coins wrapped in red paper – the kind that leaves red stain on the finger tips when touched. I did receive a few of such ang pao when I was a kid. Those were given by the amah chehs – unmarried servants – who usually wore white top and black bottom sam foos. I still do not know the reasons why they gave out ang pao as unmarried adults are not obliged to do that.

HSBC ang pao - red envelope
HSBC ang pao – red envelope for the Year of the Tiger 2010.

With the easy availability of pre-made red envelopes, there is no need to get the fingers stained nowadays on the eve of Chinese New Year. That is usually the time when married adults prepare the ang pao by putting money into the red envelopes. The amount put in must be even. Odd amounts are considered inauspicious.

Kiasu Malaysians

Some Malaysians are blatantly kiasu. They are competitively selfish, if there ever is a term to describe those few who make other fellow countrymen look uncultured and rude. They jump queue. They refuse to yield in crawling traffic. They park in accessible parking because they have a baby and a pram, or are senior citizens.

Wuan and I were waiting for the elevator at Mid Valley Megamall yesterday. There were only two of us. Then came a family of several with two shopping trolleys full of groceries. The older of the group parked her trolley right outside the elevator door in front of me. When it opened, she rushed in followed by the rest. By the time they were all inside, there was no more space for me. No wonder children nowadays do not have manners. With grandparents and parents like these, it is not surprising at all.

The following incident happened a few weeks back. Traffic leaving The Gardens Mall always comes to a crawl just before closing time. Coming out from the underground car park, I have to switch from the right-most lane to the left-most to get to the Federal Highway to go home. I had slowly merged into the middle lane from the right. With my left-turn signal blinking, I was looking for an opportunity to merge into the left lane. Traffic was slow. I noticed a big gap and slowly eased in.

The front of my car was already in the left lane. The young man driving a white Myvi refused to yield. He stepped on the accelarator to close the gap. Our cars came within inches of scraping against each other. I stopped and honked at him. He drove on as if nothing happened. When I turned left down the ramp to the Federal Highway, he was still stuck in the jam going to Old Klang Road and Petaling Jaya. What I could not understand was would allowing one car get ahead of him delay his journey home considerably in that traffic condition? I take back my words about crazy Penang and Ipoh drivers. Those in the Klang Valley are equally as bad.

The Gardens Mall has ten accessible parking bays at Level P2. Eight of these are beside the travelator, the other two outside the elevator lobby. Twice I came across parents with babies parking their cars at the accessible parking bays. One had a pram. The other just carried the baby and walked off. No prams. Nothing! If every vehicle with a baby and a pram were to park in these bays, ten would certainly not be enough. Shopping malls nowadays are crawling with prams and strollers. And parents such as these are lazy and inconsiderate. They abuse these facilities for their own convenience and deprive other people who genuinely need it from using it.

Are senior citizens entitled to park at accessible parking bays? Yes, if they have a mobility impairment or are using a wheelchair. No if they can walk, almost gallopping, from the car park to the travelator. These old couple, looking around sixtyish seemed to think otherwise. Two weeks ago, I was waiting for Wuan to lock the car. This elderly couple conveniently parked their car beside ours. The wife hopped out and walked away quickly. The husband look at me, shooked his head, smiled and walked away in equal haste. I looked at him in disbelief. Before I could react, they were already on the travelator and then disappeared from my sight in a blink. The same car was parked in the accessible parking bay a few weeks before that, too.

Thank God, these bad examples of human decency are the exception. I have also come across very polite and thoughtful people who allow me to get into the elevators first or have offered their place in the queue to me, which I declined most times. If I could spend hours shopping in the malls, there should not be a reason why I could not spend another ten minutes waiting in line to pay.

Malaysians calling our Singaporean neighbours kiasu should think twice. Some of us on this side of the causeway are no better. In fact, I have a number of Singaporean friends who are very nice people. This is not exclusively a nationality thing. Some of us, irrespective of colour or creed, simply do not have what it takes to be civil and courteous while others have an abundance of it. It is about how we were brought up. It is all about manners.