22 February 2009

Old Singapore Quiz (6) - Answers

Here are the answers to Old Singapore Quiz (6)

1. What is the name of this road?
A: Amoy Street

2. Is this portion of the road still in existence today?
A: Yes

3. Who was the OCBC chairman at that time?
A: Tan Sri Tan Chin Tuan

4. What was the tagline of the bank?
A: Solid as a rock

I managed to take a second-shot of the same stretch of Amoy Street as it appears today. Compare the new photo with the old:

Three additional buildings are visible in the new photo. They are, from left, Pickering Operations Complex, Capitol Square and UOB Plaza.

The answers to Questions 3 and 4 could be found in this Straits Times article dated 17 Feb 2001. As reader Kaizhu87 pointed out, OCBC's tagline today is "Ask OCBC". (Hmm... why do I get a feeling that they are asking me to talk to a rock? ;)

Tan Sri Tan Chin Tuan passed away on 13 Nov 2005, at a ripe old age of almost 97. You could read more about his life here. You may notice that his only son is unnamed in that article. Long ago, I heard a bad Hokkien joke about his long life and his son's speculated name. I will leave you to figure this one out as I really should not be repeating it here. (Note: This is not a quiz, so please keep your guesses to yourself.)

Nobody gave correct answers to all 4 questions. The following people made guesses and this is how they fared:

a. Yg gave only 1 correct answer (to Question 3). He thought that the location was Upper Nankin Street (now part of Hong Lim Complex and Chinatown Point). But if it was Upper Nankin Street, the view of OCBC Centre would have been at an oblique angle instead of a direct view as seen in the photo.

b. Peter provided 2 correct answers (to Questions 3 and 4).

c. Icemoon forced me to reveal to him privately the answer to Question 2 by threatening to do a second-shot of the scene.

d. Kaizhu87 thought that it was Canton Street. Again, the angle of the photo ruled out this street as the correct answer. However, he/she did get the Chairman right.

e. Shih Tung thought that the street was "one of the streets that got swallowed by Far East Square or Capital Square". Indeed, a part of Amoy Street is now within the air-conditioned Far East Square. I think he/she could be refering to the portion of Amoy Street shown in the photo below which had been torn down. The old houses facing the camera in the distance were probably located on Pekin Street.

Photo courtesy of National Archives Singapore (NAS). Circa 1980.

Note: The 1st photo (circa 1978) and the 2nd photo (dated last year) were taken from the location indicated by the red arrow in the map above while I believe that the NAS photo was taken from the location indicated by the blue arrow, before Far East Square was built.


2ndshot said...

Finally .. I see your second shot. =)

I have to say it is pretty impressive, in terms of camera angle and position. The way your left and top borders clip the shophouse and OCBC building is just like the old one.

I wouldn't be able to do something like that. You must teach me some new tricks to better my skill.

Victor said...

Icemoon, you are being too humble. My skills are no match for yours, really.

I realised that I should have stooped down when taking the photo. Then the road would appear lower like in the old photo.

Actually, I cheated by cropping my photo a little. :p

yg said...

victor, maybe you should have taken a prone position and used a low tripod to take the shot. of course, you need to lay mat on the road.

peter said...

If I am not wrong, Amoy Street had this popular street hawker who fried the flat yellow noodle which come with "twa-tao", Ngoh Hiang and fish cake warped in Opah leaf. Tried that in the mid-60s. In the 1970s, I could not find this street hawker until in the early 1980s whilst lunching at OCBC Center, I found it at the Beng Thian Restaurant as one of the dishes. I made some discrete enquiries and yuppie it was the same street hawker. In the 1980s, a "take-away" package cost $5/-. I usually placed my telephone order before I came down to pick up for my lunch.

Lam Chun See said...

Thanks for your second shot. It shows that not much has changed in Amoy St.

I am afraid I don't know much about this area. Only went to the old Pidemco Court a few times to change passport. It had a horribly narrow spiral ramp to the car park. And the lifts were perpetually full.

Victor said...

Yg, your invaluable comments have been noted and will be considered for my next second shot. :-)

Victor said...

Peter, I think you may be refering to Ka Soh (Cantonese word meaning "daughter-in-law") Restaurant. It is still in Amoy Street but I don't know about the standard of the food now.

Have you tried the Hokkien mee at Bee Heong, 4th flr, PIL Building, 140 Cecil Street (Tel 62229075)? It is simply "out of this world".

Victor said...

Chun See, ok you are excused. I know you don't like crowded places. :)

Icemoon said...

"Shooter, adopt prone position. One magazine of 3000 rounds. Own time, own target. Fire!"

Wah, yg must be a sniper last time. They need to run pretty fast to escape from artillery bombardment.

Huh, the Hokkien mee really so nice meh? Will go and try.

yg said...

victor, seriously, i am impressed by your 2nd shot of amoy street. i have attempted taking 2nd shots and i have given up because i find it so frustrating; i just could not get it right. the position, angle and focal length all have to be right. and, the height.

peter said...

YG: For practice, suggest you use human (preferably opposite sex). I am sure you cannot miss right?

Victor said...

Icemoon, I am excused from BMT lah (graded 'PES5/5BE'). I don't know how to handle a real gun.

Yg, thank you. Here are some self-taught tips to taking good second shots:

1. Print out a copy of the old photo. Then with photo in hand, go hunt for the right spot and camera angle. Don't worry too much about focal length because you can crop the photo afterwards.

2. Take several shots from slightly different angles. (Of course, don't do this in the middle of the road.)

Peter, speaking from experience? :p