Sunday, June 22, 2008

Another milestone

In 1985, we produced our very own national car, the Proton Saga. It was considered such an achievement that there was great fanfare all around when it was first unveiled. We have other objects too which we have bestowed the distinction of being called ‘national’ – subject of the nation’s respect and identity. A few come immediately to mind: the Jalur Gemilang, our national flag; the hibiscus, our national flower, the National Monument, a fitting tribute to our fallen heroes during the last World War.

But, just recently Malaysia has reached another milestone. Though probably not as profound but it is certainly no less worthy, we have our very own…national rice. Don’t believe me? Look at this photo.

‘Beras Nasional’, National Rice. Doesn’t it just instill pride in you? Where else in the world would you find rice that is deemed to belong to the nation? Now, don’t get me wrong. Lest you think I’m mocking this whole affair, I’m not. I’m glad, very glad, that we have such rice. I actually think it more important than almost all the other national symbols – without rice, this country will not move. We live on rice; no rice, no country. That’s why there was all the worry about rice shortage a few months back. We must have rice, cheaper rice – more so now than ever before, what with a 10kg pack of other ‘premium’ rice fetching more than RM50. I am thankful.

Now, if only Pos Malaysia would consider putting this on stamps, then we can consider the whole matter official.

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