"That siao kia long time neh make noise," I remarked over a meal recently.
Jen laughed and nodded.
"Hmm, I think this is probably the Footy off-season." My calculated guess was probably astute. Though I am not a follower of the local game, it was not difficult to associate the venomous swearing that took place during the evenings of some weekends. Since there was a bluish looking flag flying high on a self erected pole from that house a few months ago and a search from the Internet revealed the team of that emblem had reached the Finals of a cup, my guess was confirmed. The passionate foul mouth was watching footy whenever he went on his berserker's barrage.
His team (probably) got owned big time in the Finals, since his usual rampant bravado was reduced to some helpless whimper. I felt him, since I support a football team which never won a league title for 26 years for 27 years. It took me awhile to get used to the nonsense dished out from that guy whom I never met. When he wasn't in action, the neighbourhood would be so quiet that we could hear the cries of a baby several houses away. When I said quiet, I meant Perth quiet and not Singapore quiet. The kind of quiet that actually scares some Singaporeans, though it is nothing like the deafening silence one can experience staying in a rural region here. I like it. The lower the average decibels, the better.
So naturally, Mr Redneck was my enemy. For two years, I had to tolerate with his rants on selected weekends until recently, when his team lost right from the first minute and he was unusually subdued throughout the game, I found the comedy of things. On one occasion, I was told by a Malaysian neighbour that 'that guy' was actually a Singaporean. I didn't believe it at first, for Mr Redneck cursed and swore way too alike what a local Aussie would. It didn't sound like a Singaporean at the slightest. I wondered for a while if my Malaysian neighbour was trying to irk me by associate the notorious neighborhood foulmouth to me by our nationalities.
After the tip-off by my neighbour, I began to pay a bit of attention to the rants of the foulmouth. Nope. No clues if he might be a Singaporean. He continued to sound like any local white guy who had one a drink too many before watching the Footy team he was rooting for. You see, that is some bad stereotyping. We Singaporeans would always accuse the others but never admit we are bloody racists ourselves. Only recently I found out that I was wrong all along. During one of those robust "ang mo-sounding" rant, we heard a distinctive curse that rounded off his impressive outburst, "Gan ni nabu chao cheebye!"
I stopped what I was doing, stared at Jen and pointed to the window. She laughed and said she heard it. After two years of being his unwilling audience, we found that Redneck foulmouth was a Singaporean after all. Though he could very well be a Malaysian, who are equally adept in the art, my neighbhour probably knew more than I did, since he was living abut that fellow.
Don't judge too quick.