TODAY Voices: Give equal recognition to Home Team NSmen

5 May 2013:

The original article that TODAY voices published on 20 April 2013 can be seen here. I get annoyed whenever people say SCDF NSFs live a simple life in the station. Truth is, CD is no less easier than any other vocation. Can’t really speak about SPF training cause I didn’t go through their training. But….its a royal pain in the arse when guys who go out and face real danger get overshadowed by society’s misconception and ignorance that army is badass. Perhaps the icing on the cake is when one of my juniors asked what is SCDF -_-“. Regardless, read and enjoy. To view the scan in larger dimensions, just click on the picture.

Give equal recognition to Home Team NSmen

The copyright for this belongs to TODAY newspaper.



  1. Tiim

    Whenever I read NS related articles, I’ll cringe. I was exempted due to blood disorder. So I’ll never know how it feels like to be clad in any uniform or the thrill of finally able to ORD. And boys post-NS will always find this topic something like an ice breaker. So while you lament for recognition, here I am wishing NS, any vocation, had been part of my life.

    I still think it is ridiculous. I am pretty active in sports and I run a lot. Sprained my ankle numerous times and broke this and that. In fact, sprained again 2 weeks ago. And yet, a simple blood test can get you off the hook.

    Anyway that is years ago. I think if I have to go and serve now, I would have a problem. Haha.

    • You know, one of my close kakis from Malaysia also feels the same – not having that “bond” that most Singaporean guys share. I must admit, that NS does bond people to a degree — nothing like shared hardship to forge a brotherhood. But such a brotherhood can be forged outside of NS, in other similar situations.

      That said, as I’ve always told my men: what matters more is that you’ve spent those two years of life properly. Regardless of uniform, or whether you even wore one in the first place. On the flip side, there is wayyyyyy too much emphasis placed on it, hovering on the extreme of empty bravado, and in the presence of women – show-horsing. One of my friends, sorta keng-ed in NS. However, he spent the time studying and going night class. In terms of paper qualifications, he has outpaced everyone from my school cohort. How bad-ass is that man hahaha.

      There is more to life than just wearing a uniform and parading (both of which I hated by the way. I spent a lot of time wearing my t-shirt rather than my uniform. Cause I was a lepak instructor. Most of the time at least. And I didn’t cheong officers to look like a flower).

      I know alot of people are gonna disagree with me on the bravado part and show-horsing, but meh.

      Oh yea. NS is the best way to break people, to ensure they conform and do as they’re told. Works on most people.

  2. Tim

    Ooooo you’re an instructor. Was it stressful? I can imagine it is not easy dealing with 18-20 year old boys. And yeah, since you were a lepak instructor, definitely a favourite of your recruits. Like having a lepak teacher. hahaha

    So your friend really knows how to make use of his time. Wah wah. I can tell it is not easy. Bad ass man bad ass. I wonder what he is doing now.

    My friends’ anecdotes of life in the army had mostly been the massive amount of time that they have wasted…doing nothing. But im sure not all vocations are like that. Eh but since you’re from CD, you surely without a doubt have a lot of gross stories to share. Like missing heads and all that jazz. My friend once had to attend a case where this ah pek’s balls got stuck in the chair. Like literally. You know those chairs with holes in it. And when everything was over the boys couldn’t stop laughing.

    I really enjoy listening to NS stories. Not so exciting telling people that I was exempted. And when people asked whether Ive just ORD-ed I will just nod. Haha. Lazylah to explain.

    And I have to agree with the bravado part and show horsing. There are men in general who are naturally show offy and pushy, regardless of age (but very unpopular), not only in NS but in workplaces and then everywhere. I know people who are really high in their IQs but much is to be desired for their EQs.

    Ah life and people~~

    Hey I dont know what to say but im kind of embarassed all these while bugging a busy writer. But like I said, give it a few years before you become (even more) well known in the journalism industry. And when the time comes, I can at least be thrilled to know that Ive sort of chatted with/ bugged you online before. Haha

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