Daily Rants

Confession of an Ah Beng.

June 24, 2005 by Galvin Tan in Daily Rants with 8 Comments


After reading TV Smith’s entry on Proton Ah Beng Gen 3, I would like to share my opinions about Ah Bengs and Ah Lians.

The truth is, I was an Ah Beng! I think I am still quite an Ah Beng now. And I’m not ashamed to admit it. My friends still calls me an Ah Beng and occasionally they refer me as Klang Chow Ah Beng. This is pretty cool actually because people acknowledged your existence…though not in very a good manner.

Why was I such an Ah Beng? Well, I used to wear bright fluorescent yellow t-shirts. Hey…it was branded ok…FOREST! And I used to have a pair of cool Kamachi high-cut shoe. Not Reebok Pump or Nike Air but Kamachi!! It was so much cheaper and cooler compared to those expensive Reeboks and Nikes…and it comes with fluorescent coloured shoe laces. Back in school my friends wear cool Casio watches and I had my Casia watch. It was black and it lasted me 2 years ok. During weekends, my friends will chill out in McDonald’s in their casual wear…Levi’s jeans and Nike tees and I’ll usually wear my Cheetah tee and Edwon Jeans. RM10 for 3 tees and RM29.90 for the jeans.

Seriously, lack of fashion sense doesn’t categorize us as an Ah Beng. It’s lack of money that puts us in the offbeat community. Back then, not everyone can afford having 3 pairs of Reeboks, 2 Casio watches, 4 pairs of Levi’s and a bundle of Nike t-shirts. And I was one of them.

But then again Ah Bengs are not necessarily poor people. Some Ah Bengs are in fact quite rich. Else how could they afford wearing Armani shirt, Renoma jeans with Larrie leather shoe? How can they afford to drive an over-accessorized Honda Civic with loud muffler and bright neon lights?

So what makes Ah Beng, an Ah Beng? Is it the coloured hair? I’ve seen many ‘cool’ people chilling out in The Bliss and Zouk with coloured hairstyle too…so are they considered an Ah Beng too? Or maybe it is the way they dressed up? So bell-bottom pants with folded sleeve shirt are considered un-cool but when some top Paris model wears it, it’s a fashion statement? Or maybe the way they talk? Speaking with your mother tongue doesn’t make you an Ah Beng or an Ah Lian ok! It is known that Ah Bengs and Ah Lians swear a lot when they talk. I have to agree with that and you’ll do so too if you’re a frequent patron to Petaling Street. Then again, not everyone who swears ridiculously a lot is an Ah Beng or Ah Lian. They are just being who they are. I’m very sure Fuckstress will agree with that.

So tell me, why shun the fact that we could be Ah Beng or Ah Lian? I seriously think that Ah Bengs are in fact guilty for the rapid growth of IT labours in Malaysia. Think about it, how else can you learn to program Visual C++ or do photo editing with Photoshop for less than RM5? And thanks to them, we are enjoying Mr. And Mrs. Smith for less than RM7 and you can still make money out it. Just sell the DVD to your friend after watching it!

Being an Ah Beng and Ah Lian is actually quite cool. Kan nin neh, I’m sure if you search deep inside yourself, you’ll find an Ah Beng/Ah Lian in you ;)

Here are some collections from the Internet that made me proud to be a chow ah beng!!!

  • Stah Wars from Power98 FM, Singapore.
  • Lord Of The Rings – Hokkien version for China market.


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    About Galvin Tan

    A creative professional and social media junkie, Galvin Tan has been blogging since 2005 and he writes about everything from food to gadget. An avid fan of football and loves playing foosball and basketball. For latest updates, follow him @galvintan on Twitter.

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    8 comments
    spiv
    spiv

    Brilliant entry.

    spiv
    spiv

    Brilliant entry.

    lance
    lance

    lolx, hokkien pple are frank and fun loving pple lo

    esp ah bengs/lians, they take life as it is....no matter how tough it gets

    ah boi

    lance
    lance

    lolx, hokkien pple are frank and fun loving pple lo

    esp ah bengs/lians, they take life as it is....no matter how tough it gets

    ah boi

    RAY@NYC
    RAY@NYC

    Great post Beng. i love to be ah beng one in a while. its' ture. tehres a real beng in me.

    RAY@NYC
    RAY@NYC

    Great post Beng. i love to be ah beng one in a while. its' ture. tehres a real beng in me.

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