Friday, February 24, 2006

Damn Monkey Wrenchers

Monkey wrenchers be damn. I keep coming acoss one too many monkeywrenches today.

First I was at co-op when I came across the classic book the Monkey Wrench Gang. In fact, they are making it into a movie due to be out in 2007. That was when I first heard of the monkeywrench. I mean how could I not know what a monkey wrench is right? Could it ever be more relevant to me, the monkey?

Then a monkeywrench was thrown at me by yuene who not so discreetly winked at me when she used the term monkeywrench. Oh ha ha. 2 mentions in one day. Is that a sign?

XR who was with me and sharon today who puzzledly asked what monkeywrench is but I kept silent because I was then still struggling very hard to remember what it is! Embarrassing as that is, I had my memory refreshed by wikipedia.

For those uninitiated, the monkey wrench gang is the 70s equivalent of the ELF - Earth Liberation Front - a constant source of contention between me and W because there is no assuring him that I am no eco-terrorist.

The Monkey Wrench Gang was a novel by Edward Abbey about a group of people who goes and sabotage ecologically damaging development for the sake of the environment, otherwise known as eco-tage or eco-terrorism.

Now it's usually used to refer to actions that sabotages to the Establishment for nature or a good cause. Well yuene... I'm not very sure if unwed mother counts as being ecological but alright it is a good cause so we'll narrowly accept your answer. ding ding ding!

Honestly, I'm not a violent person. Call me chicken but having been stifled by the "peaceful" environment of Singapore, being involved in protests and marches scares me. My Thai teacher, an associate professor no less, very confidently told the whole class that she was actually going to fly back to Thailand to join in the protest against the prime minister a few weeks back but her mother stopped her. Gosh, I mean this is probably outrageous for Singapore standards. This is a woman probably in her 40s! Even Prof Savage, the upholder of all things proper and civilised, very gleefully tells us of their exploits in NUS in the 70s. God forbid if an NUS students be caught dead doing that these days. Wearing black in silent protest of the school fee hike is as daring as they come for our generation. Whatever of the young?

So, here I am, stifled, kia-si and the last thing somebody would describe as being extremist. But noooo, my future husband thinks I'm some environmental extremist who wants to join ELF just because I raved about supporting sustainable agriculture and hang out with the progressive types in Santa Barbara. Yeah, I won't tell your mama I'm a hippie... because I'm not!!!! Do I have to be a capitalist or a conformer of societally acceptable norms in order not to be a hippie? I am sorry but all it took to trigger the hippie association was the idea of communal kitchens. Because apparently that sounds too airy fairy to W and that means they are hippies disguised as egalitarian elites. bleh.

Whatever it is, I did concur with him but I definitely did not like being accused of being a hippie because I do aspire that lifestyle, TO SOME EXTENT. Everybody I was with was a supporter of that lifestyle but gosh, some drive, some even like speeding. So drum circles and swimming in lakes are hippie behavior. Does that mean I have to deprive myself of something I enjoy just not to be associated with hippies? And all this time, they're just afriad I'll end up smoking pot and leaving out of a trailer or on a 1000-yearsold redwood tree.

Why can't people have more faith in my kiasi-ness (read: cowardry). No amount of pretending to be a monkey would make me a monkey wrencher. I'm born chicken and will always be chicken!

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