Tuesday, 18 August 2020

4-day work week hawkers


I'm seeing more and more hawkers in Queenstown opening for 4 days a week.

That's a good sign. 

Which is also part of the Singapore story.

Mind you. These hawkers are in their late 60s, 70s, and even 80s! They have worked 30 to 40 years to be where they are today.

No, they are not "lazy". 

They've earned the right to take it "easy" a bit, for they have "enough".

Their grown up children are probably poly or uni graduates. The "bo tak chek" ones with "ang gong" on their bodies would have a hawker stall of their own. Like that ABC fishball noodle and Tanglin Halt wanton noddle stalls, both had their sons having their own hawker stalls at Alexandra Village.

Its another one of those "real people, real stories" examples where you don't have to feel "pressured" to invest or else...

Especially if investing is not your thing...

Be it trading or investing, its not any different from selling chicken rice or nasi lemak. 

Its a craft.

Never mind the nouns; focus on the adjectives.

If we are good at what we do, then we can survive 30 to 40 years doing what we do,

Ever wonder why those hawkers in their 70s or 80s are still working - albeit on a 4 days workweek - instead of taking it "easy" at home?

Well, you'll know the answer when you try it yourself. 

I found it out myself after 18 months of "doing nothing" after my return from Athens.

When everyday is Sunday, Sunday soon loses its meaning.



  1. Hi SMOL,

    Like the famed fish soup stall near your place. Open late, close early, and weekends don't operate

    1. Unintelligent Nerd,

      Its always good when we have options :)

      What's unsaid and hidden behind the "FIRE" mantra is to do what pleases us.

      Its never about "passive", "passive" sit at home do nothing.

      P.S. Sorry about the comment moderation. My blog under attack by pernicious spam comments...

      Tried word verification also no use. Someone has cracked the code on how to bypass Blogger checks :(

    2. Hi SMOL,

      Politically incorrect, but FI also allows one to choose who they want to associate with. There's no need for pretence. :)

    3. Unintelligent Nerd,

      Spot on!

      During my weekend gig, I'm one of the few promoters who can, and will poke customers, if they act like an ass.

      I rather serve ladies and gentlemen who treat service people proper ;)

  2. Haha how true.
    Even now, my wife works from home, we have no real difference between weekend and weekday. Everyday is the same.

    1. ERSG,

      Yup, that's why I noticed I was a bit affected "psychologically" during the 2 months lockdown in Singapore.

      Thank goodness for gaming as a distraction!

      Its important to break the monotony.

      Maybe that's why nature have cycles?

      High tide; low tide.

      The 4 seasons (OK, Singapore only got 2 seasons - rain or hot like hell).

      Night and day, etc.

      You stay safe in Houston!

      Come back remember to slang with cowboy accent OK?

  3. Hi Smol, u put a new twist to "u think everyday sunday"

    Ya... Actually, HBL and cb makes me realise that if I am healthy, I actually would like to die at the workspace or playing sports.

    But having another skill is good. But just have realistic expectations on how good that skills is and how maketable it is worth

    1. Sillyinvestor,

      You and your acronyms... I had to pause and ponder what's that for a while... The only cb I know is...

      LOL! Its home based learning and circuit breaker.

      OK... I would personally prefer to die in bed with a woman but hey! We all have our fetishes!


      I like our 5,000 years of Chinese wisdom.


  4. Hi Smol,

    With WFH (the luckier ones), it seems like everybody in my neighbourhood is on halfday or 66%-day workweeks.

    Everytime I go out during weekdays it looks like malls, cafes, kopitiams are packed in the afternoons till evenings.

    I can no longer boast that I'm so free lim kopi from 2pm to 5pm when half my estate appears to be doing the same thing! LOL!

    1. Spur,

      This Wuhan virus thing is really life changing.

      SARS was a sharp pain and then its over.

      This time round, some of the practices we do today may become "permanent".

      I'm sure some landowners would continue this work from home practice even when we have discovered a vaccine.

      Its an "easy" way to minimise office space and save on rental and manpower costs.

      It may also accelerate the practice of treating manpower as "contractors" rather than "employees".

      If work can be done online, won't it be more "competitive" to outsource work to these "contractors" globally instead?

      Why settle for talent from a limited pool when we can tap the expertise globally?

      Eh? You work in the mornings only? Then you are also in the 15 hour workweek club ;)

    2. Heheh, depends on markets. Nowadays only work 1 or 2 hrs a day. Unlike in Mar/ Apr when it was more like 6 hrs each day, including weekends (the horror of OT!).

      Officially a jobless bum since 2010-ish. :P

      I still remember the look on an elderly centimillionaire uncle's face when he visited from overseas & heard that I'm a lazy layabout. Lol.

      Ok, reminder to self to be more hardworking & do more morning walks!

    3. Spur,

      A fellow man of leisure ;)

      I'm working towards cultivating myself into a man of culture.

      You know, watch anime, read comics, play Warhammer board games, and participate in cosplay conventions :)

  5. Hi SMOL,

    Knowing when it is enough takes wisdom and thought. Applies to all aspects of life.

    Realised I'm out of social media for a long while, not been blogging too haha, and what a good break it is.

    1. LP,

      It helps with a little life experience under our belt ;)

      Yup, I'm practicing hungry eat; tired rest.

      Feels like blogging, blog.

      Don't feel like reading blogs, don't.

      My life; my pace.

  6. If a person has lost motivation for his job and can afford to quit, then it's better that he quits and let the next better player take over. Good for him. He's happier this way. Good for the employer to be rid of an unmotivated worker. Good for whoever replaces him because a job is better done by someone who is more motivated and hungrier.

    Nobody can stand "doing nothing" for prolonged period. If humans do not need to work for a living, then they will move towards doing what their human capital is ... doing things they like and are good at, at the right pace. That's when we see really creative quality output that even the best engineered AI machines cannot match. Isn't this a good thing?

    Read about the Star Trek new economy.

    1. hyom,

      I like our 5,000 years of Chinese wisdom:

      Men worry enter wrong profession; women worry marry wrong guy.

      Doing what we enjoy, and to be in the company of people we like, now that's bliss.

      The main reason we hate our work is not the work itself...

      Its the people.

    2. SMOL,

      Happy to see your reply. I was wondering if you were sick with some virus since you usually reply quite promptly. Haha.

    3. hyom,

      I'm OK :)

      Just not reading blogs or checking my blog as diligently like I used to...

      Its one of those phases where I'm pleasantly "distracted" by other interests ;)


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