We came upon this Reddit post recently and found it too interesting not to share. Living in Malaysia these facts may sound normal but if you think about it, they're really unique.
1. We have Nine Kings That Take Turns to be the Supreme King
Well, techincally they take turns becoming Malaysia's Head of State or the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. Malaysia’s system of elected monarchy is the literally the only one of its kind in the world.
Our country is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary democracy at a federal and state level. While we have 13 states and three Federal Territories, nine of these states are ruled by their own kings, who typically take turns to sit on the throne as Yang di-Pertuan Agong, with the upcoming king decided by votes in the Council of Rulers.
Also, we have a Deputy Agong who fills in for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong when he is otherwise indisposed.
2. Everyone is a Boss Here
It doesn’t matter your status or background, in Malaysia you’re a ‘boss’. Head to a mamak shop to enjoy a cup of your favourite beverage, and chimes of “Boss, bagi teh tarik satu.” can be commonly heard. Malaysians have somehow adopted the word as a polite way to address others. Former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak is also notably known as ‘bossku’ or ‘our boss’, who adopted the moniker to seem more appealing to citizens.
3. Many motorcyclists wear their jackets backward
Especially when it rains, motorcyclists can be spotted putting on their jackets, but strangely backward. In Malaysia, most people don’t zip up as it is always hot, hot, hot and zipping is also a hassle. To prevent the jacket from puffing up and fluttering in their faces, motorcyclists choose to wear them backwards instead.
4. We have one of the highest number of lightning strikes in the world
This is a rather nerve-wracking fact that we wish weren’t true: Malaysia is counted amongst top three countries in the world that experience a high lightning density, with an annual mean lightning ground flash density of 13.9 flashes per square kilometre.
Recent studies showed that a factor that contributes to this phenomenon is probably due to the geographical position of Malaysia being encircled by the Andaman Sea, Sulu Sea, the Straits of Malacca and South China Sea. Another sobering fact is this is probably due to the increase in the number of factories, deforestation, and other developments that contribute towards the heating of the Earth.
As many as 131 deaths and injuries have been reported per year due to lightning strikes.
5. Regardless of your race or religion, everyone older than you is either your ‘Uncle’ or ‘Aunty’
While people in the West may address those older than them and even their own parents by name, according to Malaysian culture, this is considered rude. In South Korea, they also have a strict and complicated system for honorific titles that are vital for proper conversations and Malaysians will be familiar with the term ‘oppa’ which is used for females addressing their older brother or as a term of endearment. However in Malaysia, we keep it simple yet polite –– addressing men that are considerably older than us ‘Uncle’ and the ladies as ‘Aunty!
6. You can visit a cave with a massive cockroach population
It’s bad enough to see a single cockroach in our houses but ––besides the terrifying fact that there are some 276k bats residing in the Gomantong Cave, Sabah –– the cave is also absolutely infested with thousands upon thousands of cockroaches, that cover the ceilings and the floor that make them uncountable. Sounds like a nightmare destination that we won’t add to our list. Note: we omitted pictures of the creepy crawlies to spare your eyes!
Image source: thestar.com.my, sleeplessinkl.my, cfr.org, sinarharian.com.my, hbo.com, sabahtourism.com
Thu Sep 15 2022