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Saturday, February 27, 2010

One Down, Fifty Three To Go.

The 26th February of 2010 was just beginning in the wee hours of the morning. Most of us are sound asleep in our respective beds, our minds leaving our bodies and are transported into an alternate reality where we live and experience what it plays for us that night. As for others, like the stubborn youth of Kuching who embrace the nightlife even though this is a quiet suburban town, it was a time to either keep the night alive or call it a night. For Jason Kiu, who decided to call it a night and return home, probably like any normal weekend nightout where he would drive home, left his keys on the table, change and go to bed . The problem is, that night was not normal as he never made it home. Instead, his car rammed through a fence, hit a tree and then it tumbled upside down, with Jason in it. This is when, Jason's story has reached it's finale.

I, however was oblivious towards everything. First of all, I wasn't close to Jason. We were primary schoolmates and we attend the same economics and quantitative analysis class together in Swinburne. Even then, I wouldn't try and talk to him. Basically because I cannot find any common ground with him. So it was like that, the only time we talk was when he told me, Bianca doing my homework for me was a brilliant idea.
It was brilliant... till my mid terms flopped, that is.

When Jenny Chew (if you refer to my previous post from way back at 2006, you would know who she is, one half of the now defunct Jeneric) posted the news on her status update, I was sceptical at first, with things like this, you need to be awfully sure about it but then again a normal logical person would not post and R.I.P wish on her status update, just for kicks right? It was midday by then.

Just to be sure, I checked with Guiliano, Kiat Seng and Evon, who confirmed to me that Jason Kiu was the first person of the 2002 class of Six White of SJK Chung Hua No.4... to pass away. Still in denial, as my own grandmother passed away 17 days ago and the fact that I am turning 20 19.5 in a week, I called my cousin, Derrick for another confirmation who was also sceptical too. However in an hour, he replied and told me that it was true. Obviously, the news sent me into a confused and frantic state, fortunately, there was no vomitting like the night my dad told me, my grandmother passed away and I was one of the last people to see her conscious.

Obviously with a guy who was stuck with me in the same class for six years, he played a significant part in my early life and the fact that I know that there will be people in our class that will not be able to, do not bother to or too emotional to attend the funeral, I have decided to propose the idea to my friends to send flowers to his family. Evon was on board with the idea and together we quickly worked out the stuff like gathering people to pitch in for the wreath as it's pretty darn expensive to personally send one and the time and location of the funeral. Sending flowers is the least someone can do to show that he or she cares, it's not about face, it's to show that you care, in the end the flowers won't last long anyway and are meant to last a day, if not a few hours.

Basically, everything was pretty much said and done with only the flowers and writing to go till I hit towards a bit of a snag, my parents said that since my grandmother isn't dead long enough, I, should have no hand in this issue whatsoever. As you can see, they are pretty much too late for that but in the end, family is more important, so I sent some advice to Evon and she basically backed me up and covered for me with everything from there. Thanks, by the way. In the end, his lineage of classmates from primary school till college were represented by the flowers.

I started everything is not because you know, I am fake since I started this whole thing but I barely even know the guy. It's because, well having a dead grandmother makes you feel super emotional. When my grandmother died, I was hoping to receive messages of condolences, words of encouragement, flowers and visits from friends, not to show off to my family, but to have that comfort zone of knowing that you have friends who have your back. Guess what? No condolonces, no word of encouragement and yeah pretty much nothing, I have to tell them that they died and all I got were a few short ones. When things like these happen, you don't think straight, so you felt alone and thinking that your friends are well, a bunch of aimless, zero initiative, boring, passive little shitheads, this especially happens when you happen to be an imaginative drama queen. So I didn't want this to happen to Jason, with his family thinking that aside from a few close friends and family, his classmates doesn't give a damn, that's why I came up with the flower idea.

Later that night, my old NS mate, Ben found out the news made online. So I read it and yeah, it hit past a fence, hit a tree and tumbled upside down, very Desperate Housewives worthy, that is until you found out that it is actually reality. The next day, went to my grandma's place (well, it's now my uncle's place, formerly my grandma's) and read the Chinese newspapers as they are like the tabloid version of local news. It's just like it was written right out of a scene in Desperate Housewives.

Statistically, it's common for men aged between 16-25 to die. This is because our testosterone levels are high and we are usually thrill seekers, looking out for fun and living the life of cigarettes, alcohols, drugs, speed and sex. Normally, it is expected for someone like Jason Kiu to die in a vehicular accident because it is so common in Asian countries where our traffic laws are a lot more loose compared to our more developed counterparts, but when I found out that Jason Kiu actually died in a car accident, I was as shocked as everyone else. It's because it's normal for someone like him to die but you would not expect it to actually be him.

Parents will definitely use his death as an example to all boys, they will put assumptions like he was probably drunk, speeding, high, not wearing a seat belt at the time, etc etc etc. We do not know what actually happened that night, but we all know that we have lost a friend, a classmate, a comrad, a teammate and to those closest to him, a son and a brother and generally, just a guy whose life was tragically cut short. For those of you who were in his final chapter and especially those in the final pages, I hope that you do not let him die in vain, let his death be an example to you people and be a lot more careful next time. After all, your life is the most precious thing in this world to you. There is no wrong in having a little fun once in a while but please do not allow your misjudgments and fallacies be the cause of your death. Remember the Chinese saying: The Road is like the Tiger's Mouth.

If you die, you are not the one having problems, since you are dead, but you will be everyone else's. People will have to prepare for your funeral, find a site as your burial ground, hold a service, entertain guests, send flowers and transport for you and if you are a praticing Buddhist, its even worse. There's chanting that will mysteriously make you weep like crying little girls, you are basically stuck at the deceased house for the next few days, you also have to keep a wheel flame of paper burning continuously and you have to assure that you have a continuous chain of joss sticks burning. What if it rains on the day of your burial, somemore? What if you are Hakka and forced to be vegan for a week? Then, there is the grieving period and the five stages of grief. Then of course what if it's your friend's birthday next week or even tomorrow or your mom's, your girlfriend, your... you get the point. See? Death is so inconvenient, so at least what you should do is to keep yourself safe.

Once you are dead, you are dead, game over. There is no reset, there is no restart, there is no infinite lives like the Metal Slug games. Once you are dead, there is nothing else to say but... may he rest in peace.


TimothyTay said...

hi, u said your grandmother passed away, was that 2 days before cny? How old was she? around 100? My greatgrandma pass away around that time...

Brendan Goh said...

Nope, it was a week before CNY, and she was pretty young if you told me that your great grandmother was around 100, because she was 77

Brendan Goh said...
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