I was buying lunch for my family at coffee shop, after I
finished mine. I “da pao” (packet) “chai fan” (mixed vegetable rice) which
was seriously quite cheap. A mere S$7.90 for 3 pax, with several dishes and 3
big packets of rice separately packed.
Good food in Singapore is really cheap. Love it!
Since it was way below my budget, I was thinking maybe can
buy one more chicken drumstick from another stall.
So I move on to queue at the chicken rice stall. Seeing list
price for chicken drum stick with rice at $4.50, I asked in mandarin to
the Auntie:
“1 chicken drumstick without rice!”
– she said!
I told her pointing at the price board, “no need rice also $4.50?”
Auntie started her reasoning not in the friendliest
“oh… with rice
or without rice also $4.50, standard pricing!”
I knew that the Auntie in the stall is just employee and so
she wouldn’t care more as long as there is less hassle for herself. 

the past, there will be two scenarios for me. First, I will  just forget it and buy it to save time. I could not have care too much about few dollars let alone cents. Time is more important. 

Second, if I am not in the wrong and feels unfairly treated, I will normally refutes and even resulted in heated arguments later. The attributes about me in the past, is I have quite a glib tongue so far always winning with reasons in an argument, loud voice, and can be crazily fierce and totally oblivious of the public. 
This time, I said, 

“huh – ok never
mind I do not want anymore!”
Then I passed by another coffee shop with a roasted duck
stall. Not to be deterred by the chicken drumstick incident, I decided to try
my luck again, this time buying duck drumstick!
“I want 1 duck
drum stick packet without rice, how much?”
I asked the stall vendor.
The male vendor paused for a long time and started rolling
his eyes to think.
Hmm.. I was wondering how come he needs to think so long for
the price. Isn’t this kind of standard pricing that he is selling each day?
Finally he said, “$5.30!”
I paused and ponder for a while.  
Perhaps realizing I was doing my sums (which I am not), he
intervened with a perceived sense of guilt written over his face and said, “with rice $5.80 and without rice is
I smiled and said “ok
never mind”
and walk away again.
“A day without

I do not know why, I just feel very good afterwards.  
It was neither about me being bothered by the price, nor was
I happy because I am not being cheated.

Perhaps it is the ability to say “No” and walk away
decisively that makes me feel good.

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11 thoughts on “Know how to say “NO”!

  1. Er………. Rolf,

    Duck really more ex than chicken lei….

    Depending on the cut too… Some allow more meat to the Leg to be chop and hence more "ex"

    the second person might not be conning you

    1. Hi SI,

      Thanks for dropping by. Yes agree that duck drumstick is more ex n below $6 at coffee shop is still not ex.

      But the point I wanna make to myself is neither about money nor being con, which really are secondary.

      The second stall holder had a suspicious face and think for too long for a regular price item that makes me feels uncomfortable. He may be honest, but that is not my emphasis.

      I m happy because it is that even for such a small thing nowadays, my feeling is so strong that I can voluntary say No! And after saying No I feels good, and that is what I wanted to express.

      In any case, eventually we cannot even finish our vegetable rice….


    1. don't know about hyperinflation. but this disinflation situation we have right now, may not last forever.it is almost paradise.
      rising wages, stagnant prices.
      sooner or later, something may be done about the forex.

    2. In other words, over luxurious life for a long time will not last…

      Just look at the number of branded cars we have on the streets today despite our car being the most ex!

  2. Sorry to devite from the point. I am vegetarian and not my family. Some time i have to accompany them to eat at macdonalds. They charge the bigmac without meat 7.50 same as with meat. I cant blame the hawker who probaly make 50 cents from rice.

  3. Sorry to devite from the point. I am vegetarian and not my family. Some time i have to accompany them to eat at macdonalds. They charge the bigmac without meat 7.50 same as with meat. I cant blame the hawker who probaly make 50 cents from rice.

    1. Hi Unknown,

      Nowadays I tend not like to comment with Unknown comments, bcos when we are clear conscience we have nothing to hide.

      The whole point of this article is not the money as I mentioned. It is about the ability to say No decisively.

      Pardon me to say it's not quite relevant about ur Macdonald example bcos in Mac it is fixed pricing by the corporation itself. The hawker that want to make 50c from the rice is not about the money, but her attitude.

      But still the whole point is to know how to say No decisively – that is the essence!


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