Chope Me A Place

Posted: August 6, 2009 in Uncategorized

Captain’s log                       Stardate: 63598.0(August 6th, 2009)

Feeling in a mood to blog in a new chapter. So here goes.

Commonly heard: “Don’t forget to chope a place for me!”

The closet English equivalent will be booked, save or reserve. But the local term in my opinion, promotes more than just placing an order for something. Foreigners who have stayed long enough in Singapore had often expressed themselves to this, especially to those who are so very quickly assimilate everything Singaporean. So which it was best understood in such a context, that you just have to had that place before anybody can get. But please, do not get confuse with the word chop. Basically, you just have to add in the “e” after the alphabet “p” =D

This reminds me, as how interesting our common heritage as been. Singaporeans nowdays have been practising this habit of placing a pack of tissue paper to chope a place, especially when seen in a crowded foodcourt. I was rather baffled though, as I had wondered. Is this an “aftermath” of a past KFC advertisement? Where the company is advertising a new meal, and those people, acting as excited customers will chope their places by placing a pack of tissue paper on the tables before rushing like madness towards the counter. However, there’s a dude, despite managed to find a place, but doesn’t have a pack. Obviously, if he decide to join in the queue, his place will be taken over by somebody else, and that the restaurant was already packed. So what he did? He removed his belt, and left it on his table. He was safe! Brilliant idea, don’t you think? Hehe….=D

I believe some of you may have seen this KFC advertisement before. Seeing customers nowadays placing their pack of tissue paper as to chope their places must have been a followed-up for that particular advertisement. Hehe…=D Interesting, really, though I myself never try that before. But now, during the recent months and years, we had upgrade that opportunity to a level of extend of chope our places using more than just tissue paper. I’ve seen umbrellas, newspaper, magazines, even books, handkerchiefs (I wonder if these were meant to be a replacement for tissue paper….), a small towel, a jacket or sweater, even a cane. Seeing haversack or bags is a common sight. But what about those who had chope their place using paper bags loaded with goods? Wasn’t that sound unsafe?

Indeed, I soon came to find out, that in the sixties, where those streetside Chinese wayang were popular, people would tie chairs with handkerchiefs as in to chope their places. Some, would place mats and stools in certain locations if there’s no chairs provided. Amazingly, everybody seems to understood and respected this unwritten rules. So it appears that, this “rule” has already existed long time ago, and that this “fashion” has change so dramatically as generation continues.

Man! You can chope almost anything! =D

Such a unique word, I’ll say. And just recently, I overheard this guy from inside a multi-storey carpark while approaching my car. He was standing at the center of an empty parking lot, between a car and a van. At the same time, was on the phone saying: “Yo bro, I chope a carpark for you.”

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