Saturday, March 18, 2006

Majestic visit let down by pasar wear

RoyaltyQueen Elizabeth II came by Singapore again yesterday. She was last here in 1972 and 1989. As she had done before, she was gracious enough to visit our heartlands, and in particular, a Singaporean whom she first got acquainted with about 34 years ago who still lived in the same Toa Payoh Town, albeit in much better circumstances now.

TanktopST's front page photo (18 March 2006) showed Mr Pung dressed to his nines - a full suit and tie in his own house - welcoming the Queen, who herself was dressed in a simple but beautiful flowing green gown with matching hat. It is not far fetched to imagine and expect that everyone else would be dressed well, for it is her Royal Majesty, the Queen of Britain, visiting. So it was disturbing to see in that front page picture Mr Pung's daughter so under-dressed, and, what's more, standing next to the Queen! Granted, she is in her own home and she is a housewife, but doesn't she have anything more appropriate to wear for the occasion except a white tanktop (it would be called a singlet in 1972, worn only by men), particularly when her father is so well dressed? One would probably wear the same clothes to the market nowadays. After all, as another housewife, Ms Tay, said, "It is not everyday that the Queen visits". Is this a generation gap thing or what? The daughter is 33, the father, 63.

Perhaps the powers that be suggested some degree of informality. If so, the father didn't heed it and the daughter has gone off on a tangent. Inappropriate is what I call it. Some would accuse her of not having any dress sense. Others will say she is disrespectful. You will no doubt hear this in conversations in the heartland coffeeshops in the days to come, in kaypoh Singapore blogs (such as this one) and further afield where the ST is distributed (which includes Britain).

So ok, Singapore is no more a colony of Britain, and QEII is no longer our Majesty the Queen, but she is a visitor from afar, and one who doesn't come by often. I am sure that formal wear is also called for if and when President S.R. Nathan visits, or for that matter, any friend or relative visiting on a special occasion.

P.S. I am sorry that readers cannot see the photo here. ST requires subscription before one can view its pages. Subscription here means paying $$$. I am too poor to do so. Even if I weren't and did subscribe, ST will probably send their lawyers after me for infringing copyright if I link to that picture here, in which case, I will be made poor anyway. Actually, there is also another reason why I don't read the ST regularly. I've blogged about it here.

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