I was in Desa Sri Hartamas to grab a quick bite, and managed to pick up the July issue of Off The Edge (one of the very few local magazines that I still don’t mind forking out money for), when an uncle – whom I assumed to be the Kiddies Store owner – engaged me in a curious discussion.
“After you are done with this (Off The Edge) magazine, what do you do with it? Do you throw it away?”
I keep it, I replied. I explained that I’ve been collecting this magazine since it’s very first issue.
“Ah, very good. It’s a good magazine, like Personal Money. If you do want to dispose of it, just bring it back and we can distribute it to underprivileged schools…”
Nice. But the conversation then seged into a discourse on design.
“Off The Edge and Personal Money are well-designed magazines. They’re easy to read.”
I said that I also enjoyed their sister publication, Edge Financial Daily.
“Yes, that’s well designed too. They really get at the heart of things – politically, business-wise – and it’s easy to read, like the International Herald Tribune.”
I’m sure Ho Kay Tat would smile if he knows of this!
“Because, you see,” continued the well-spoken bespectacled proprietor, “its not at all like the other papers.”
Suddenly, he shifted his tact.
“How do you read The Star or the New Straits Times? You do still read them, yes?”
I said yes, but wanted to qualify when the uncle cut me off—“How do you read them? The Star and NST?”
Umm, I lay them out on the table.
“Good, because if you held them up, then all the shit falls out! You know, the first six to seven pages, that’s all shit, right? Haha! Good one, yes?”
I smiled, thanked him for my change and that joke, and walked away.