Monday, January 08, 2007

Cry Wolf

Do you slow down on the expressway when you see on the EMAS (Expressway Monitoring & Advisory System) signboard displaying this message: "TRAFFIC POLICE OPS PLEASE DRIVE CAREFULLY"?



So far, all the times when i see this message on the expressways, i don't see any traffic police (Subaru WRX) parked on the expressway shoulder, looking for cars that exceed the speed limit. In fact, i only see the TP's Surbaru WRX when the message is not displayed.

Remember the story of The Boy who Cried Wolf from Aesop's Fables?

The Boy Who Cried Wolf, also known as The Shepherd Boy and the Wolf, is a fable by Aesop. The protagonist of the fable is a bored shepherd boy who entertained himself by calling out "wolf". Nearby villagers who came to his rescue found that the alarms were false and that they'd wasted their time. When the boy was actually confronted by a wolf, the villagers did not believe his cries for help and his flock perished (in some versions when the villagers ignore him the wolf kills him). The moral is stated at the end of the fable as:

Even when liars tell the truth, they are never believed.
The English idiom "to cry wolf", derived from the fable, refers to the act of persistently raising the alarm about a non-existent threat, with the implication that the person who cried wolf would not be taken seriously should a real emergency take place.

On the TV series, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, the Cardassian Garak has a different understanding of the story, suggesting its message is "Never tell the same lie twice". On the Simpsons episode "Marge Gets a Job", Bart Simpson indeed tells not one but several different lies to avoid taking a test, only to literally be attacked by a wolf and, subsequently, not believed.

A cynical interpretation is also possible: Do not lie too often, and do not tell lies just for your own amusement; save lies for when they are urgently required.

15 Comments:

Blogger Fantasy "Sticky" Flier said...

haha one day the wolf will really appear...

Monday, January 8, 2007 at 12:29:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Joepsc said...

Perhaps the police are hidden among the bushes or just that you have not chanced upon them, so that does not rule out their presence absolutely.

They can cry wolf as much as they want, the losers are those who don't believe. It's not worth speeding!

Monday, January 8, 2007 at 4:14:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mickell said...

To Fantasy Flier: When the sign doesn't say Traffic Police ops are ongoing, the traffic police are actually in operation. And vice versa :p

To Joepsc: It would be hilarious to catch the police hiding among the bushes to nab speedsters. It's okay to speed. There is a difference between speeding safely and speeding recklessly. TP speed safely in the course of discharding their duties, don't they?

Monday, January 8, 2007 at 5:32:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Helen said...

I didn't know they inform the public when there is a police ops nearby.

The police does it in the open eh? Here in my hometown, they still do it the old fashion way.

Hide and ambush in the bushes or trees. lol

Monday, January 8, 2007 at 7:15:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mickell said...

To Helen: Yeah. Nothing beats catching speedsters the good old fashioned way, hide in the bushes and ambush. Ha, ha, ha...! :D Does a RM50 ringgit bribe always work if you don't want to get booked?

Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 9:54:00 AM GMT+8  
Blogger Joepsc said...

Mickell,

I have seen TP behind some bush with radar "gun" pointing at oncoming vehicles, of course, some years back.

And btw, do they inform the public of police ops or is that just a psychological ploy?

Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 12:18:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mickell said...

To Joepsc: Thanks for bringing to our attention TP who discharge their duties "sneakily". I think when the EMAS display shows "Traffic Police Ops" and the TP are actually nowhere to be found on that particular stretch of highway, it's very likely to be just a psychological ploy.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 1:13:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger 老星洲 said...

I hate these traffic police. When it is time to nab speed demons, they are nowhere to be seen. I do admire their power of "suspicious", I was driving into Lim Chu Kang Campsite and they followed me all the way till to the costal shore. Guess what? They drove beside me, looked into my face for 1 min. Afterthat, I accelerated to 90km/h and they accelerated more than me. In the end, we both put up a race.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 2:56:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mickell said...

To Lao Xing Zhou: What? They didn't stop you to see your driving license? That's odd. You're not supposed to do 90km/h along Lim Chu Kang Road even though the stretch Lim Chu Kang Cemetery and Tengah Airbase is very straight and wide for aircraft landing. Not when a the police is pacing you. I guess in the end, you let the police overtake you heh? Sure sounds like fun.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 3:56:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger 老星洲 said...

No. The Lim Chu Kang Campite aka Girl Guides and Scout Camp. The police drivers are so young, probably a few years older than me, it is not a surprise they want to chase or race after me.

They overtook me in the end and I found them "eating snakes" at the battle site.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 5:04:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mickell said...

To Lao Xing Zhou: Your adventure just proves that the police seldom or hardly ever asks to see a driver's driving license as long as the driver is driving properly and within the legal speed limit.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007 at 10:25:00 AM GMT+8  
Blogger 老星洲 said...

If that so, then we will have the poorest traffic records for 2006 but we didn't, aren't we?

In fact, we improved quite alot when nabbing offenders, speed demons and low accident rates.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007 at 11:55:00 AM GMT+8  
Blogger Mickell said...

The traffic police's no. 1 primary target has been and always will be drunk driving.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007 at 12:21:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Xaiver said...

well in reference to ur post, the ops are truely on. perhaps u missed out one very impt feature. The overhead bridge. Saw a few times the TP perching on the overhead bridge and EMAS did warn police ops in action.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007 at 8:23:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mickell said...

There are no overhead pedestrian bridges along SLE before it branches out left into TPE and right into CTE. I only noticed TP using camera along PIE near Toa Payoh towards Jurong on the pedestrian bridge armed with a camera aimed at the vehicles passing below.

Thursday, January 11, 2007 at 12:14:00 PM GMT+8  

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