Accept It


Written on 6/25/2006 02:08:00 pm by sikapitan

Whenever a survey portrays Malaysia in a bad light, Malaysians get defensive and start questioning the veracity of the study. Recently, Reader's Digest published its courtesy survey that ranked Malaysia at number 33 out of 35 nations. Cue the "conspiracy against Malaysia" theory and "Western-centric bias" accusation. Nevertheless, the truth is that, no matter how hard we try to ignore it, Malaysians are less courteous than we think we are, especially to fellow Malaysians.

Reader's Digest conducted three simple experiments : the "thank you" test, the "drop a paper" test and holding a door open for someone. Now, just forget its scientific value and comparison with other nations, and concentrate on the three tests. Apply it in your daily activities and you will be surprised at how often we Malaysians fail to meet even our own expectations.

How often do we get a "thank you" with a smile? More often than not, what you get from your typical cashier is a half-hearted "thank you" (if you're lucky) without eye-contact, let alone a decent smile. What about those who helped you in holding the door, yet doing it with a sour face that you would think he is suffering from constant diarrhea?

We experience it everyday. On the road where people just don't bother raising their hands to acknowledge another person giving way, at the mall where most of the time the smile is kept for tourist, even on a date where the guy no longer bother holding the chair for the lady.

I personally don't care if Reader's Digest say we are First or Last. What matters is that I know we could be a lot more courteous to our fellow Malaysians, and THAT is undisputable.

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