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Jakarta Post

Nag-off: Jakartans compete at a favorite city pastime

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, December 17, 2019   /  08:47 am
The Jakarta Post Image
Battle of words: Two nagging contest participants dance before the contest starts at the Kampung Melayu Betawi Festival held on Jl. Jatinegara Barat, East Jakarta, on Saturday.(JP/Dionnasius Aditya)

Nag, nag and nag. No one else in Indonesia, it is said, beats native Jakartans – or Betawi – when it comes to complaining, fault-finding and making demands. The city’s propensity for nagging took the limelight at the Betawi Festival in Kampung Melayu, East Jakarta, this weekend. “Oh, God almighty! It’s morning already but my son is still sleeping. Tong! Wake up, tong! Don’t you want to go to school?” a 50-year-old participant, Siti Mariam, said on stage. Tong, short for entong, is an endearing term for one’s son. “If you study hard you can be an engineer or a doctor or a president, a man of dignity and live in a proper house. Don’t be like us, your parents, living in a cramped room where it’s hard to even move,” said Siti, who works as a television extra. Something was missing, howev...