CHILDREN SHOULD BE banned from reading books, top author Romesh Gunesekera said at a literary conference in Singapore at the weekend. “It’s the only way to get them to read.”

Neat idea. On my return to Hong Kong I told a young person of my acquaintance that she should under no circumstances visit the website She went straight there. It works!

Authors left to right: Romesh Gunesekera, Tishani Doshi, Moni Mohsin

ROMESH AND THIS columnist were both speaking at an event organized by a group with a problematic name, as I found out when telling a Hong Kong friend about it.

“I’m in Singapore speaking at an event organized by a group called ISAS.”

[Long pause.] “Really? I thought you were a moderate?”

ISAS stands for Institute for South Asian Studies, not to be confused with ISIS, a term commonly used for a rampaging group of terrorists.

Rampaging of any kind, including in the privacy of your own bedroom, is strictly forbidden in Singapore.

DAVID ASH of Singapore got a phone call.

CALLER: Hello. I saw your car advert. Are you selling your car?

DAVID: No. I just thought I would put it in the “for sale” section as I like to get interesting phone calls.

CALLER [disappointed]: But it says it’s for sale.

DAVID: Then that would be right then.

CALLER: Can I take it for a test drive? Maybe for two or three days, just to be really sure.

David quickly ended the call. He said afterwards: “I thought I was the one with the sense of humour.”

WORD ON THE street says that the father of delectable Bollywood starlet Shradda Kapoor has brought the whole family to Hong Kong to check out Chinese culture.

They headed straight to Lantau Island to spend the day at Disneyland.

Hopefully they will also try some classic Hong Kong Chinese food, such as stuffed-crust pizza.

TALKING OF WHICH, I learn that the pizza-coated fried chicken at KFC this month is a “Hong Kong only” experiment.

“The rest of the world’s population gets to kill itself with only one type of fast food at a time, while we in Hong Kong can ruin our health at twice the speed!” said a reader who only wished to be identified as Lui.

I feel so proud. Thank you, KFC.

AT THE SAME time, I can’t help but remember that McDonald’s did a promotion in Taiwan in which they dressed female counter staff as French maids and made them address male customers as “Master”.

I think this is an utterly deplorable example of sexism. So when are they bringing this to Hong Kong? Just asking.

READERS WILL BE amused at the contrast between the Chinese message in the picture (“Don’t throw litter”) and the English version (“Not to parabolic”). The picture was taken by Hong Kong reader Trevira Winterbottom at the Big Buddha of Leshan in Sichuan, China this week.

A parabola is a scientific term for a type of arc made by a thrown ball so it does kind of make sense.

Trevira tried to reconcile the two messages: “Never parabolic anywhere except in the bin.”

Sign in Leshan, China. Photo: Trevira Winterbottom

A thought about democracy.

TALK TO ME. Keep sending ideas and comments! (Otherwise you just get mine.)

Nury Vittachi

Nury Vittachi failed to win the Man Booker Prize this year. He also failed to win the Pulitzer Prize. He hopes to make it a clean sweep by failing to win the Nobel Prize for literature. He does not live on The Peak with 20 cats and a parakeet called Trixy. He is not strange.