When a guy, MF, called me up during the CNY break, asking if we could provide a speaker for a talk on HIV/AIDS they plan to organise at their college, I told him it shouldn’t be a problem as long as he didn’t give us short notice. I made it clear that we are all volunteers, we have our own jobs, and as such it wouldn’t be easy to meet last minute requests.
At first MF mentioned 5th March, but with an option to having it on another date more convenient for us. I asked if it could be done in the afternoon, as it would be easier for me, but he insisted it would be easier to get more students to attend in the morning. So we finally agreed to have it on the morning of 9th March.
But all those arrangements were by phone calls; and so I told him to at least send us an official letter either by fax or by email, for our records. I gave him both Buddies’ fax number and email address.
I waited but the letter never came. Then last week MF called, just to confirm with me that the talk is on, but he had been busy so he asked if it’s okay for him to send me the letter this week. He didn’t ask for anything else, he just asked me if I am still okay for the 9th March talk.
Monday morning, after I came back from Kuching, I received a text message from MF (whom I believe is a student of the college), saying that the CEO at his college requires the biodata of the speaker. I was rather busy in the office then, and thinking that since the talk is next week, there’s ample time for me to write my biodata and email to MF later.
But later in the afternoon, this guy called me up, saying that his CEO wanted to see my biodata on that very day and asked if I could give my biodata there and then! I understand the CEO’s concern – surely he didn’t want to have any Tom, Dick or Harry to give the talk on such a serious topic to the students in the college. But really, MF should have asked me for my biodata earlier and not give me last minute notice. What… he thinks I have nothing better to do, is it? He’s so busy he couldn’t send me the letter I requested, yet he thinks I have all the time in the world to prepare my biodata there and then?
But I figured he must have already been scolded by his CEO for not getting all the required info ready, I just typed a very brief biodata of myself and emailed it using my personal email address. The first email bounced, so I asked MF if he could give me another email address. He did, and I think this time he gave his personal email address.
The next morning, I received another SMS from MF – saying that his CEO requires a more detailed biodata, like a file attachment. I told MF that I’d be busy the whole day, and so if he insisted on a more detailed biodata, I’d only give it to him the next day. Actually I could get my biodata done in the afternoon, but I was getting rather pissed off. I mean… he’s the one who’s not properly organised; why is it that I, as the invited speaker, who’s getting pushed?
A few minutes later, I received a call from the college, this time not from MF, but from the student affairs officer. This officer was more professional in his approach. Anyway, based on the short biodata I gave earlier, and looking at my name, 2 of the officers at the college recognised the name. They were personal friends of my business partner and one of them even joined us during our Kuching trip. The moment the lady saw my name, she exclaimed, “Eh, I baru gi Sarawak dengan dia!”
I guess after that they didn’t worry too much about whether I was “qualified” to give the talk. The student affairs officer just asked what I needed them to prepare for my presentation. So I just told him that my presentation would be in powerpoint format and so they’d need to prepare the computer, projector etc. I will just bring along my external hard drive where all my files are kept. I took the opportunity to tell him that I was still waiting for the official letter from them inviting us for the talk. “Laaa… takde pulak dia bagitau saya pasal surat. Nanti saya tanya dia balik!” said the officer, commenting about MF.
This morning when I downloaded my emails, one email caught my attention. With an email coming from a “hai sayang” as the sender’s name, when all other emails had proper names as sender, naturally I thought it was one of those spam emails. I almost deleted the email without opening it, but suddenly I noticed the subject line of that very email - “Jemputan Ceramah AIDS”. Mak aihh! It was MF, attaching the official letter that I was waiting for!
Hai sayang??!! I bet he uses that name to communicate with his girlfriend and forgot to change the sender’s name when he wanted to send the official letter to me. I purposely replied the email just to say, “Noted, TQ” just so that he’d notice that he just “hai sayang”-ed me. Muahaha!
I betcha he’d be quite embarrassed to meet me next week!