so you sailed away,

Sweet Memories – Olivia Ong

I didn’t know what happened. I had no clue. All I knew was that I screwed up the whole thing. The sudden strong urge to just put an explosive in my brain and blow my whole head up is hitting me hard now…


Today is Malaysia’s Independence Day, eve. Yes. I was listening to Litefm’s breakfast show (unwillingly as my dad insisted to have that channel tuned in to) and they were talking about what makes us unique as Malaysians. Well, they started mentioning how Malaysians like to say “la” in their sentences and I began to realize the word never fails to appear in daily conversations or even in MSN chats. It feels like the word “la” is already part of the proper grammar (well, it IS for Chinese Grammar) and obviously sounds right and well-integrated in Malaysian’s conversations. Being a sort-of typical Malaysian, I picked up the habit of saying “la” too! In fact, way too extemporaneously and often that you probably think I’m exaggerating already. But no, I made an effort not to write it in here. It is a bad habit I think I have to get rid off. Maybe going to the States will help a lot. :)

If you hadn’t realized, this word “la” has also evolved in time. The whole idea of evolution is something like how human evolves from apes. It is really hilarious when you come to think of it as I have heard people say a variety of words containing similar meaning as “la” and methods of usage are the same too! Ex. “lor” (or if you prefer, more “r”s at the end) “lal” “le” “ma” (or if you prefer, an “r” or more at the end) etc.
In fact, if you were to exempt all these so to say Manglish way of speaking, instead, speak like a proper person in this country, people might turn around and call you a serious or unfriendly person. Oh yes, I feel that too when I first make an acquaintance of any person who speaks without a single “la” in his slash her sentences. :/

Don’t you even think saying “la” only applies to Chinese. You can totally see the concept of 1Malaysia in just the habit of saying “la” as all races in Malaysia do, say “la” as if it is just another normal word they think they should include when speaking to another. In a bigger picture, foreign students I mix with in college, picked up this unique way of conversing too! I have a friend from Zimbabwe, whose name is Princess (don’t ask me why or how but their names will blow your minds off), speaks like a true Malaysian. If you were to talk to her through the internet chat rooms with no clue of her nationality, you would say she’s definitely a Malaysian. Also, my brother who is in the States now claims that some of the White people in America find including “la” in their conversation interesting that they too, begin doing that on purpose when they converse, hoping one day, they can say “la” effortlessly. So what I am trying to say is that, as long as there’s a place where there is the presence of a Malaysian, the culture of saying “la” REMAINS because saying “la” is INFECTIOUS! :D
Did I also mention that Malaysians are rather proud of the “la” culture? Yes they are! :D
Peace Out!

Happy Independence Day, Malaysia!

Love, EvelynLee.


Anonymous said...
Monday, August 30, 2010

Hum ok but the big question is :
What does it means ?
As a foreigner I don't really get it

Leon Eng霖™ said...
Monday, August 30, 2010

a leh lu ya ~~ haha
Malaysia Hapi Birthday~

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