May 8th, 2006

krazy koati

I like the Sprite in you

And so the election has concluded. The People's Action Party finished with 82 seats out of 84 in parliament; the Singapore Democratic Alliance has one; and the Workers' Party has one. Potong Pasir and Hougang remain opposition districts. In short, it's just like it was before. (A good number of People's Action Party members retired, though, and were replaced with new people, including quite a few of the ``post-independence generation''.) The difference is bigger if you look at vote totals -- the People's Action Party won only (only!) about 66 percent of the vote this time; in 2001 they took about 75 percent. But 66 percent is what they managed in 1997.

There were victory parades, I'm sure all over the island, although I skipped them because I didn't know where they were, and the district I'm in was uncontested anyway, plus I have this thing against watching parades. I did catch a Hippo Bus (it's a double-decker, with an open top, and painted in a purple hippopotamus theme) downtown which the People's Action Party had rented, and which they were driving around waving and honking. Unfortunately the traffic lights were with them, so they were out of range before I could take a picture.

I've noticed that whenever I pour a glass of Sprite Ice for my living room table, the glass is swarmed with ants in just a few minutes. This doesn't happen with any other sodas, or teas, or lemonade or limeade. I've mopped pretty well the whole room, and particularly well around the table and cleaned off its surface, so there can't be very strong scent trails. They just really, really like Sprite Ice. I'll have to try some 7-Up Ice. Depending on how far I can take the results there could be an Ig Nobel Prize in it for me.

Trivia: In 1848 France had about 1,921 kilometers of railroads. Source: A History of Modern France, Alfred Cobban.

Currently Reading: The Birth of Neurosis: Myth, Malady, and the Victorians, George Frederick Drinka. You want to be sympathetic to doctors -- and patients -- trying to understand and treat psychological difficulties in an era before there was even a coherent germ theory of disease, and keeping in mind that everything we thought we knew about the brain as late as 1993 has been shown to be comically naive except where it was flat-out gibberish and it's hard not to wonder what we'll think in 2021, but man did they plunge headfirst into comedy. (It's quiet a good read, though; I'm sorry my library doesn't seem to have anything else by the author.)