1. A Nation That Revels in Misbehavior

Living in Malaysia for a long time, various questions have begun to cross my mind. One of them is the excessively high smoking rate and the deplorable traffic manners. Despite the potential dark consequences these hold for Malaysian society, most Malaysians seem to live their lives without any concern.

Basically, just because the current state is good doesn't mean the next state will be better. Japan is a classic example. There's a saying "the good old days," but I anticipate that Malaysia will reach a point where people will say the same. Despite being a tropical paradise near the equator, if the consciousness of the people living here doesn't change, progress will not be made.

For instance, Malaysia has a habit of consuming overly sweet foods and drinks, which becomes hard to ignore when you live here. Wherever you go, you notice sugary drinks and food high in sugar content being offered. Of course, smoking is not allowed indoors in places like eateries due to government policies, but once you step outside, without designated smoking areas, you'll find guards smoking without hesitation. When I see this situation, I can anticipate that Malaysia will become a country with health issues worse than Japan. If not, it would mean that Japanese people had considered unhealthy lifestyles acceptable.

2. Why Do Dark-Skinned Individuals Tend to Smoke?

When humans who know that smoking is bad for health are criticized, often with the intention of caution, it's well-known that smoking reduces life expectancy by about ten years, as evidenced by numerous studies. Unless one is an extreme conspiracy theorist, denying this fact is unlikely. Yet, for some reason, in Malaysia, it seems like there are people everywhere who, whether due to low IQ or as a matter of preference, smoke cigarettes.

Especially, the sight of dark-skinned men smoking is surprising because you see it in various places. Of course, I'm not discriminating, but they don't drive fancy cars, and the bikes they ride are usually as noisy as Japanese biker gangs, and predictably, they smoke. There's no ill will behind this, but most of the time, it feels like dark-skinned men are actively choosing to engage in "actions that will lead to dire consequences later."

When I say dark-skinned men, they're usually of Indian or African descent. When you think of Africans, you might imagine Africa, but if you know human history, you'll understand that the ancestors who migrated from Eurasia to Australia had skin as dark as Africans. Considering this, it's easy to imagine their descendants living in Malaysia. Hence, for some reason, they seem to have a low health consciousness.

Malaysians are generally nonchalant. This phrase is often whispered among those who have an impression of Malaysia, but frankly speaking, it's neither good nor bad. It's clearly a negative aspect, and interpreting it as a good aspect goes too far. It's true that there are scenes where one can feel relieved by casual customer service, but frankly speaking, the quality of what they offer is low, and there's no room for customers to be treated casually. Most of what they offer is of decent quality at best. It might be said that other Western countries are the same, but that's not the point. What I want to say is that the service is poor, and it's too much to consider being casually treated well.

3. Not an Excuse Just Because It's Not Japan

Japan is said to be in its worst state ever, and that's indeed true. However, it's a mistake to simply say that Japan will face tough times in the future without any thought or judgment. After all, Malaysia will also face the struggles Japan has faced, and on the flip side, Japan might be a better place compared to Malaysia. The most relevant example is "air pollution."

Japan was once covered in photochemical smog, and Tokyo was enveloped in white haze in the mornings. However, now this phenomenon has moved to Southeast Asia. Bangkok, Jakarta, and Kuala Lumpur are now reminiscent of old Tokyo, and it's undeniable that the air in modern Japan is cleaner than in these capital cities.

Perhaps Japan in the late 2020s will somewhat resemble America, with rising prices, rising stock prices, and serious issues with crime rates and economic disparities. Let's assume this is true. Does this mean one should go to Southeast Asia? In this case, the balance would likely tilt towards Japan still being better. Ultimately, Japan has cleaner air, and even if crime increases slightly, it's unlikely to cause harm to most people. It's more harmful to weigh Japan against a mystery.


So far, I've listed various issues about Malaysia and Malaysians, but frankly speaking, they're nothing to worry about if you don't pay attention. With some effort to avoid smoking and sweet foods, things will be okay, except for the haze in October, perhaps. There may not be a place in the world that provides the most optimal conditions, but compromising is ridiculous. That much is certain.