Civil servants go rubbery to flag discontent

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 04 February, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 04 February, 2003, 12:00am

Mumblings of discontent at the government have finally made it to our inbox.

We can't imagine why.

The happy campers in the civil service have put their grievances to good use.

An alternative Hong Kong flag has been created.

An e-mail is circulating on senior government computers, suggesting that the emblem be changed to a condom 'because it more clearly reflects the government's political stance'.

A condom stands up to inflation. It also halts production, the e-mail continues. 'Condoms also destroy the next generation, protect a bunch of pr**ks, and give you a sense of security while you're actually being screwed.'

Our civil servants have let their hair down and vented some anger for a change. We thought they were just a bunch of stiffs.


Brand merchants at Ogilvy & Mather are not taking any chances this year. While the rest of us stumble into work after a four-day break, staff at the Hong Kong branch of the firm will be enjoying an extra day's holiday.

The laugh, of course, is on us. Today is a very unlucky day. The Chinese almanac says so.

Ogilvy went that extra step of consulting the almanac before making any rash decisions about returning to work. And apparently the fourth day of the Lunar New Year is inauspicious for starting work.

All staff at Ogilvy will return to their desks tomorrow instead.

Good to see the creative juices are still flowing.


On the Year of the Goat and the giving of lai see, it may be a good time to clear up any misunderstandings about the name of this column.

It is indeed called 'Lai See'.

The connection to red packets filled with cash stops there, however.

This is not, in fact, a charity for cunning readers who believe they are one phone call away from a quick buck.

So to the woman who called last week to furnish us with her address so we could send her lai see, we hope this clears it up.

There are a number of fantastic opportunities coming out of Nigeria, judging by the e-mails from bankers and accountants seeking to make you a millionaire for nothing.

We would be happy to forward these. Free of charge.


In the face of economic adversity, it is good to see Hong Kong's entrepreneurial spirit shining through.

Mr Chung Li, who describes himself as a 'credit officer' from Hang Seng Bank, has hit the e-mail trail with what seems to be an unbelievable opportunity.

In 1998, it seems, a British oil consultant made a number of fixed-term deposits worth US$28 million at Mr Chung's branch in Des Voeux Road. Sadly, the consultant died in a car crash shortly after. Now the banker desperately needs your help to get the money out. What happens is a volunteer becomes the next of kin. Addresses are given and the cash is deposited into their bank account. Wow. Although it does sound vaguely familiar.

Yes, it's official. Hong Kong scam artists are pathetic.

All that seems to have happened is that a few words have been changed in your bog standard Nigerian letter scam to make it more local.

Hint: sending it to people in Hong Kong may add insult to injury.

A lack of originality at its worst. Get your own scam.


Hong Kong has some serious competition to contend with from the state of California.

A new challenge has appeared on the blunder radar.

This time it was American roadworkers who made a classic spelling error.

They misspelled the word BUMP as BMUP on a road in Richmond, according to Web site

The 1.2-metre letters were painted to warn motorists about a series of speed bumps.

Residents were apparently shocked by the obvious error. Reports also confirmed that the painters put up another sign: SLOW MEN WORKING.