I nearly ate a cockroach


You got that right. My chop sticks were already poised to pick up the shrimp from last night’s dinner when Kuya Jojo luckily spotted the little creeper snuggled from the shrimp’s curled body.

Yes, I will be advertising their name – Bugis Street. It is a stall with the same name after a real place here, probably branched out after the original one claimed its fame. Never mind what they say that “bad publicity is still publicity.” I am getting my revenge in my own small little way, thus emphasizing on the “bad.”

Since we were staying late yesterday, me and my officemates decided to go for a break before continuing with our work. I was craving the entire day for my new found favorite, the fried hokkien mee, particularly at the hawker stall just a short distance from our office. Two of them were there, one Chinese uncle frying away on the front wok and a Chinese auntie who cooked my supposed meal at the back.

So, upon noticing the god-forsaken little devil making a graveyard out of my dish, I immediately returned the plate to the stall attendant. Uncle simply used his bare fingers, scooped the damn pest from the shrimp’s embrace, and dangled the six-legged beast in the face of auntie, then nonchalantly took my plate after throwing the creep away.

Then that’s it. No sorry, no remorse, no nothing. Fair enough. Probably they weren’t just accustomed to talking in English as most uncles and aunties in the hawkers expectedly are.

I returned to our table – Kuya Jojo visibly shaken and traumatized with the event – and prepared myself to wait for another ten minutes before they prepare my cockroachless dinner. This makes me wonder, though. Kuya Jojo seems to eat just about anything, so this might just be a facade.

Anyway, as soon as I sat down, I was surprised that a second auntie followed me and brought over another set of hokkien mee. If you think the service was just fast, think again. It was from the same wok that the terror meal was taken from.

From what I notice here in Singapore, they only prepare the food as per serving required and don’t make any extra in the hopes that another customer will queue right after you order.

I should be angry. I should complain. I should throw terrible tantrums that will scare the living daylights (or nightlights in this case) out of them. But I’m really hungry. Kuya Jojo said it was cooked anyway, and that you are not eating the cockroach itself, so might as well dig in. And so I did. I watched my office mates’ faces turn animated with the horror of our story, but I was full anyway.

Dang I should have taken pictures! Least I had was the picture of the stall, which I plan to vandalize someday with an absurd graffiti of a cockroach and big bold letters saying “Be Warned!” on their logos. If still unsatisfied, I would like to pin the auntie and the uncle beside the big cockroach graffiti and stuff them with shrimps.

Needless to say, I will never ever ever eat there again ever (redundancy is deeply intentional). I am just consoling myself with the thought that there are a lot of people all over the world who are starving and will eat just about anything, or worse, nothing at all.

But one reply was slammed at my attempt of a self pep talk: But you are staying in a rich country – Singapore. Cockroaches?!


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