Friday, August 11, 2006

Just to keep the peace

There were those years before we started to practice this annual ceremony during this month (seventh month of the Chinese Luna calendar).  We had for several years, an annual affair when the management had to deal with mass hysteria within the factory premises around this time of the year, during the 2nd or 3rd shift.  Night guards also told of seeing strange looking figures and were afraid of going on their rounds alone. 


One night while the managers and executives were attending a farewell dinner for a colleague at Penang’s E&O Hotel, they were rudely interrupted by a phone call to inform that there was another upheaval at the plant.  The plant manager and several executives had to cut short the dinner and rush back to the factory. 


That was when a production manager suggested holding this annual ceremony to “appease” the wandering spirits that are allegedly creating mischief among the operators. 

Most Chinese owned companies practice this annual ceremony.  The only difference is, local owned factories have these annual affairs paid for by the management.  Ours being a multinational, I guess we can’t put this into the budget.  So they passed the hat around. 


Eventually it became an official affair whereby a “Lor-Chu” (keeper of the urn) or chairman, and a committee is elected each year to organize the preparations and ceremony for the next year.


Well the first ceremony was started more than 12 years ago.  Until today, we haven’t lost even a minute of production time due to ‘unnatural’ occurrences.


  1. wow...i'm speechless..i guess whatever works to keep the down time to the minimal..

  2. As I understand, it wasn't just to minimise down time. It was to maintain the peace. We were told, those operators were really freaking out, screaming and running amok. 4 big sized guys couldn't hold one down... Being practical and facing reality, it was the best solution they could come out with.

  3. ...i never experience those stuff myself..hopefully never..hahaha then again..hmm...*shrug* i'm a christian :)

  4. The last photo ...
    The brown tee lady ... what she is trying to do ah?

    However ...
    This entry seems .... DIFFERENT .... hehehhehe

  5. she's the current "lor-chu". hot maah...trying to get away from fire. afternoon sun summore...
    whaddya mean 'different'?

  6. Erh?
    I tok all the while the position of Pot Master is being held by guys?
    Hmmmm ....

    Different in the sense that Uncle you already know how to include photos in your entry worrr ....
    Good job, well done.

  7. we draw lots - everybody equal mah...

    include photos - thanks to you...learned it from your home page...

  8. gotta be hellava lucky (or otherwise)...

  9. nice make me fresh back a few years back
    ya the story i hear before by our malay operator

  10. Perhaps multinational company should be more adaptive to local culture and incurred it as production cost as well just to be more efficient....=)