Malaysia Insider

Malaysia insider

Pride of a nation

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Spend any time in Malaysia and you'll soon here the phrase "Malaysia boleh!" Essentially it's the national catchphrase and means "Malaysia can do" — a rallying call to overcome any defeatist thoughts that people might have.

There aren't many countries that have such a catchphrase. A splendid flag, yes. A rousing anthem, certainly … but a catchphrase? That's rare. However, it encompasses a Malaysian attitude of wanting to get things done.

No longer is Malaysia happy to be seen to be a poor relation to Singapore. Now, every time they set about doing something it invariably has to be the biggest and the best. And this leads into a second Malaysian love: breaking records.

Nearly every new project lays claim to some record-breaking achievement. Obviously, there's the Petronas Towers, but each new mall calls itself "the biggest in Asia" — the flagpole in Merdeka Square was, at 100m, the highest in the world when it went up — and barely a weekend goes by without someone making an attempt at "the world's biggest curry puff" or suchlike.

There's even a Malaysian Book of Records, filled not with records from around the world but from just Malaysia itself.

Did you know that Kam Su-Sze swam 50 metres at the age of two years six months, the longest distance ever swum (or is it swam, I can never quite remember) by a Malaysian toddler? And are you yet to be astounded by the giant that is Hoo Sun Foo, Malaysia's tallest man at a giddy 6ft 9in (2.1m)?

I might try and set a record myself … any ideas on what to go for?

User comments
be very aware of safety when you are travelling and the public transport are really sucks. Taxi's...beaware of extorsions other then this the food are good but look for clean place.

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