The Race

OK, so I got bored while I was drinking my cup of coffee and this idea then came to me and it slowly grew from there until my trip to Labuan a few days ago.

"You did that to me again!" the Lady shouted to the man

He was getting out from his car as she came towards him. "You did that to me again!" she shouted. "Huh? What did I do?"

"Everyday! Every morning! When I see you on the road, you always beat me!" the Lady vented at him. Looking closely at her, then at her car, the Man realised what it was all about. She has a very nice looking Purple 1.6Litre Toyota Vios. Yes, every now and then, he would see that car on the road. And usually, it would disappear from one lane and then all of a sudden, it would in front or next to him. And she drove quite fast too.

"Look, Lady. I am not racing with you. I just drive to work, that’s all"

"Drive to work? DRIVE to work?!", "What do you mean by that? Hah? Tell me! You always beat me!" she raised her voice. By now, there was a crowd building up. Like typical curious Malaysians, this is entertainment to them, and a nice one too since there is nothing else to do after a nice breakfast on a Saturday morning. But this is also the same entertainment which makes traffic slow to a crawl on a typical Malaysian road.

"Lady, how can I beat you? I wasn't even speeding. You and I both know how heavy the traffic are in the morning."

"Not even speeding? Look at your car! Look how you modify it!" and all eyes stared at the Man's car, which is nothing more than a normal 1.3Litre Proton Wira.

"Where is your car? Too broke and sold it off, eh? Or did you crashed it?" sneered the Lady

"No, if you meant that car, it is at home. This car belongs to my wife, which I use to fetch her to work" explained the Man.

"Oho! Now you're a taxi driver is it? Are you trying to save money on petrol? You typical men!" the Lady attacked

"Sigh. If you must know, she is pregnant and my car's suspension is too har.." the Man responded.

"Well, I don't care!" The Lady interrupted. "I don't like you at all! I am going to make you go away". Clearly, the Man is visibly annoyed, "OK, how are you going to make me go away?" he asked.

"Simple, I will challenge you to a race. The winner who crosses this line wins and the Loser will have to park far away. And if the Loser sees the Winner on the road, they have to give way. Ha ha ha!" She laughed as she drew a line on the road to mark the Start and the End of the race.

The Man looked at her in disbelief. "You want me to race with you? Lady, you're nuts."

"What? No balls because I am a Woman?" She taunted him, "Then, I am better than you!"

After thinking for a while, this might be a good change to ge rid of her. So, he agreed but with the following conditions:

1) He chooses the route

2) The race counts on who is the fastest and does not necessary have to be a side-by-side race

3) Whoever crosses the Finishing Line first, wins the race.

"Go ahead, then, I will still win! My car is so nice, compared to yours." She boasted. So, it was set that at 10 in the morning, they would race all the way, from Jalan Kepong towards Bangsar Shopping Centre, and then back to the Starting Line. "Whatever", said the Man as he walked away for his morning Nasi Lemak

He sighed. Somehow, the delicious iced coffee he took everyday feels a bit bland today. If he won the race, the Lady would complain that he bullied her on the road. And also, he would not be seen as a Gentleman for winning the race as well. Even though they are using cars, the effect was as good as striking her in the face and using brute strength against the fairer sex was never seen as being Gentlemanly. Although this is the modern age, old values still prevail. But on the other hand, if he had lost the race, then he would be seen as weak and he is very sure Lady would make his coming days miserable whenever she sees him. Which, again, is the same as not lifting a finger when a woman kicks you in the groin. Although the response is Gentlemanly, however, the Asian society would think he is a wimp. "Ah, this is so difficult" He stared on, "This is the problem with Ego and Society. If I win, I lose and if I lose, I still lose". Sure, in his younger days, he would not have given this race any second thoughts. His prized possession; a 1.6Litre 3-Door version if his wife's car. He had the engine running with extra kicks, suspensions upgraded for those tight turns and cornering and a nice set of tires. But those days are gone and he tried to forget his wild and carefree days. This is the now. The Man is now happily married and his very reason for living now, was his precious but naughty one and a half year old daughter.

By 10, both cars were lined up at the Starting line. One of the bystanders volunteered to start the race. And with a simple wave, the race began.

Within seconds, the Vios peeled away from the Man as he sighed and shifted into First gear. "No need to stress the engine like that" he gritted his teeth as he mentally scolded the Lady for mistreating the Vios. The first traffic light saw them entering Jalan Kepong. As there was a small traffic jam, the Man use it to his advantage and caught up with the Lady at the second traffic lights. And there they were, head to head again, waiting for the lights to turn green in their favour.

Between here and the next set of lights, there would be a very sharp "S" turn. The Man wished he was in his souped up car for that. He loves those corners set up by the construction company which has been at the site for more than eight months now. It was his daily morning thrill.

But as the lights turned green, the Vios has the advantage which the Lady took without hesitation. Although there were some motorcyclists in front of them, she managed to squeeze through leaving a trail of beeps from the infuriated motorcyclists. The "S" curve is a bit of a challenge, not in the sense of the layout but in its unpredictability. Pedestrians and cyclists like to run to the middle of the curve's plastic dividers thinking that it will protect them from oncoming cars when they're crossing the road. Apart from that, and the minor problem with the floods, the curve is a beauty. It would then be a simple matter of how fast you want to go into it. Luckily, an old lady managed to avoid the speeding Vios which nearly went into the trees. "I am a Supergirl! See me fly! I am invincible!", as she steered her Vios crazily on the streets.

The man drove his wife's car slowly into the curve because he does not want to wear out the tires and suspensions prematurely. "These things costs money to repair", he reminded himself and there is no way he can pay for those repairs. For months, he has carefully saved most of his meagre salary for his wife's deliver which is next month. Sometimes, he is unhappy on how much he can take home every month after leaving the very company has worked with for so long. And his current pay is not even that close. There were no more incidents after the third traffic light as they both know that it would be straight roads from there to Jalan Kuching until Bangsar and back again.

This would clearly put the Man at a big disadvantage but he is not bothered. It was then when the Lady decided to enter the ramp into Jalan Kuching. She saw on her rear-view mirror that the Man did not follow suit but instead, took the roundabout beneath the ramp. "Ha ha ha ha! He missed the ramp! What an idiot!", laughed the Lady until she immediately realised that there is always a traffic jam at the downward exit of the ramp and her face changed to horror as it became fact.

As the man took the roundabout in his usual speed, he has made up his mind. It was something the Lady said earlier which changed the whole race into his favour, even before they started. "Well, this is it!", he told himself as he exited from the roundabout and back to the direction of the Starting Line.

Swearing and horning each car to make way, the Lady became more and more impatient. Her thoughts are about winning the race. It does not matter if the Man's car is behind her or side by side. As long as she is in front, that is all that matters. With each passing minute, her scowl face slowly twisted itself into a menacing facade. As the traffic jam clears, she managed to get into the new ramp which will take her to Jalan Duta and straight into the uphill slope of Jalan Damansara. "I am still ahead! I am Supergirl!", she laughed to herself. Her car is now speeding towards Bangsar Shopping Centre and at the traffic lights, she turned right into one of the roads. After a quick U-turn, she sped back to Kepong. She could have made an illegal U-turn there and then, at the lights but she thought to herself, "No need to embarrass myself and give that stupid man something to laugh at"

The drive back to the Starting Line was mostly devoid of cars since it was a Saturday. And everyone is going into town. Still, the Lady pushed her Vios even faster. But by the time she arrived at the Starting Line, she was surprised to see the Man’s car already there. There was a table set up near the line and judging from the emtpied cups, the Man had arrived quite some time ago.

She was shocked. Coming out from her car, she walked straight to the man. He was sitting there, drinking his usual iced black coffee. As he saw he coming, he stood up and offered her a drink. In her fury, she slapped the drink away, which fell to the road, shattering the glass. “How the hell did you come back here so fast, you stupid man!”, she shouted at him.



“YOU must have cheated!”

“Yeah, you must have cheated because I did not see your car throughout the race!”

“You cheater! You chea..”

The Man held up his hands to the Lady so that he could speak. “I did not cheat, my Dear. I just won”

“No! You cheated! Let everyone see him! This coward cheated on the race! And just because I am a woman, he still wants to cheat me! How low can you go! Look at him! LOOK AT HIM!” All eyes stared where the Lady pointed. In crowd, you can see their faces ranging from bemused understanding to bewildered suspicion.

“Remember the rules we both agreed before the race?” The Man asked her.

“The Rules were stated that whoever crosses the Finish Line wins”. The Man continued, “But the Rules did not say, how”

By this time, her face was red with anger, “You! You..”

“And although the Rules also stated that we make our way from here TOWARDS Bangsar and back again. It did not say we have to REACH Bangsar”

“So, I just did a U-turn after I made my way towards Bangsar and crossed the Finish Line."

"I won” he reminded her as he walked away.

And the crowd cheered and clapped their hands at the Man’s wits which left him off the hook. So, with that, he walked back to his office, with is head held high. He cannot wait for the evening to come so that he could go home and tell this story to his daughter.

He wanted to feel happy but instead, felt his chest slamming to the road. His last vision was that of the small pebbles in the tarred road rushing towards him, before the Vios's tires crushed his skull. The Lady did not stop her beautiful Vios until she has reversed and hit the Man’s body a few more times, splattering blood everywhere.

“Even if you win, you lose” she cackled uncontrollably as her car headed straight into an oncoming lorry where metal met metal. She tried tried to stop the car but the brakes were wet and slippery with the Man's blood. She never had an accident before and this is something new for her. And for the first time in her life, she now knows how it feels to be Supergirl, flying straight out of the her beautiful Vios’s windscreen and into the lorry's hot radiator.

This is a Google Earth snapshot. Click to enlarge. Its quite big, though