Speakers from left: Kenny Goh, Timothy Tiah, Kid Chan, Ng Khai Lee, Ganesh

With the current political condition and state of education system today, I often frown when I think of Malaysia in the future. Sometimes, I sink into a sunken grieve when my friends and I begin on the disquisition on the terrible state of the world with the timenorm. I wished I have brought those friends of mine to the Youth 08 Entrepreneur Convention.

Speakers from left: Oh Joo Nee, Mia Palencia, Kenny Sia, Kevin Zahri, Kid Chan

Towards the end of the session, I find myself seated at the back of the convention hall. I gushed back after registering my name in the Nuffnang Traffic Jam party. Holding my little note book, a young girl came and sat next to me. Dressed in a pair of black slack and a crumpled shirt, she’s probably at most 22 years old. Ecstatically she panted, “I just arrived. I was working and I probably missed the whole convention.” ” Why do you bother to come at all” I heard my thought replying to her but I held my tongue. I acknowledged her attempt of small talk with merely a nod. The next thing she said caught me off guard as I never expected a stranger to ask of me. In fact, the last time I heard those words was probably 10 years ago !

“Can I borrow your notes?” When she finished, I could hardly speak. This youth came all the way after work, despite missing almost all the speeches and yet she had this unspeakable courage to ask a complete stranger for notes ! Her quest for knowledge and thirst for information is truly commendable. I suppose my little note book gave the impression that I had recorded all the wise words of the speakers, where in actual fact the papers were merely a tool I used to draft out my blog post whenever I have inspiration to write. Not knowing that, she was poking her head and her nose in between the pages. My privacy was invaded. I showed her the page and she was not contented. She prompted further shooting me down with machine gun questions, “What are the steps? Did they list down the way to do it? What are the tips ? Any website I should go to ? ” I was shot dead point blank.

What a shock she gave me. First it was the “kiasu” student who pounces on my notes, then it was a hungry woman who wants to be spoon fed. I must say, I was somewhat disheartened that the expectation was set as such step-by-step on “How to become a successful entrepreneur” would be the highlight of the speeches. A remark made by another passing acquaintance during lunch, “Speakers didn’t really say much of how. I didn’t get much action points.” If this is what was expected, may I beckon to change your thoughts, as for my answer to the aspiring hungry woman, “The how is in the attitude. Passion, determination, persistence and hard work. There are many ways to get things done.” I was obviously not getting my point across, as her response was “So, no website ah ? Got ah ? ” Trying hard not to roll my eyes I said, “Yes, there is. Start with …” Somewhat dissatisfied and disgruntled, she walked away.

No, I don’t despair about the youth today.