Was out yesterday night, for a simple dinner with my family, and also to get printer cartridges for my Canon Printer. We were at the bus stop, waiting for the bus to come when we saw 4 kids: 2 boys and 2 girls, playing around the bus stop. They suddenly came together when one of the boys said, “Let’s go to the bus stop!”

They crowded the boy. He said again, “Let’s race to the bus stop. Whoever first will become the…” Before he could finish, the other 3 kids ran towards the bus stop. Seeing this, he shouted, “the Rich Man!” and start running himself. When they were close to the bus stop, one of the girls commented, “Hey, how about the second, become what?” That, in our teenage’s world, can only constitute a single comment, “Dotz”.

On closer inspection, the children may not be that naive after all. They have learnt, in many ways, that the strongest, the fittest will probably be the most successful and there is almost no room for failures in our society. But as Singaporeans, they want to have something to lay back on, which is why they asked about the second placement. They know that not everyone can be leaders, no more than one man can be the richest or the most successful, because there can only be a single best. They wouldn’t mind getting a second place, they are still above others, after all.

And that is reality, their simple game is a demonstration of the bigger society, everyone so involved in this ‘rat race’. It is, in some ways, nice to be the spectator, laughing at how foolish those people in the race are, sharing the joy and the sadness of those in there, like what typical philosophers do. They simply observe the world, around them.


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