Monday, 11 June 2012

Fascination with car number plates

On loan to a good friend for her wedding.


Worldwide, fascination with car number plates has been around for decades and people do not mind to spend a huge fortune on it. One example is the well-known tycoon Li Ka-shing who spent millions of Hong Kong dollar for the number 9 in 1994 because that year was the year of dog in Chinese zodiac and 9 sounds like dog in Cantonese.

While some would prefer certain numbers like 1, 8 or 9, there are others who prefer personalized number plates. Preference also depends on the culture of particular individuals, for example, 4 is a forbidden number for all Chinese around the world while for certain culture and race, 4 is a favorable one.

Another thing about this fascination is people tend to interpret the alphabet of the such WWW means World Wide Web  or Wang Wang Wang (Triple Prosperity or it can also be Money, Money and Money because Wang in Bahasa Malaysia means money). I also have friends who interpret C as die because it sounds like death in Hokkien. Some shun Y because it means crocked in Mandarin. Other favorites were WRM which means Wang Ringgit Malaysia and ADA which means “have” in Malay.

Besides that, some car plates that carries the surname like TAN was a huge favorite. It is too bad for the revenue of the country that in Malaysia, we do not have a number plate that starts with L or O because the Lees and the Ongs will sure bid it with a huge amount.

I am not a maniac in chasing for number plates like the recent bid for numbers that starts with WWW that created such huge media coverage but I do have some little share in wanting a number plate that signifies certain thing and also the “correct” number after consulting my feng shui master that will bring good luck.

However, one funny thing is that my friends who share the same feng shui master as me all ends up having the same numbers for our car plates as well as mobile phone number. The numbers are 8092, 8098 or 9098.  It signifies support and wealth in I Ching numerology calculations. I am the proud owner of MCA 8092 that is attached to my Silver Shadow II – MCA being the political party I am attached to. Besides that, my personal mobile number also ends with 8092.

Perhaps it is time for personalized number plates in Malaysia. In New Zealand, I am still keeping my old car for the sake of keeping the plate JADRYN. I remember many years ago that when Dr Ling Liong Sik was still the minister of transport, he did mention that very soon Malaysians can personalize their number plates. Well, Ling has left office for 9 years. What happened to this idea? I will be the first to grab JADRYN the day when the government decides to allow Malaysians to personalize their number plates.
Waiting to see how much PKR 1 will fetch.

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