Runaway Federal Highway ostrich safe
By Praven Suppayah
PETALING JAYA — Motorists along the Federal Highway could not believe their eyes yesterday when an ostrich escaped from its owner’s car and started sprinting beside vehicles on the fast lane.
For a few minutes, they were spellbound by the grace of the large flightless bird as it headed from Jalan University to the vicinity of the Mid Valley shopping mall.
The runaway bird’s owner Darren Chow, 44, who stopped his car and chased after six-month-old named Chickaboo, finally caught up with it after it slowed down.
Its 50-minute escapade over four kilometres began at 3.30pm as the animal behaviourist was transporting the pet to a farm in Semenyih as the behemoth bird had outgrown the garden at his house in SS2.
The white and black feathered bird squeezed its way out of an open window and hit the road running.
“I stopped the car on the emergency lane and ran after Chickaboo. I thought I might lose her forever as she was running very fast,” he said.
Chow said he started shouting out its name as he was running and that could have resulted in the bird slowing down.
The afternoon drama cause a stir on the highway, with motorists pulling over as they saw Chickaboo in their rear-view mirror.
Motorcyclists had to swerve to avoid the fleeing fowl, which was oblivious to the attention it was getting.
Chow told Malay Mail that he uses his pets, which include ducks and turkeys, as educational tools in schools around the city.
“Chickaboo is popular among schoolchildren. I take all my pets to visit schools often,” added the animal-lover.
“She also tags along with me when I visit the homeless in Jalan Haji Taib. She is a hit among children there,” he said.
Malay Mail Online had earlier yesterday quoted BFM producer Jeff Sandhu as saying the giant bird switched lanes several times, causing cars to screech to a halt.
“It started out on the slow lane, then went to the emergency lane and later to the fast lane,” he said after his video of the running ostrich went viral on social media.
He said the ostrich could have been running at about 35kmh, while pedestrians took the opportunity to capture the unusual event on camera.
“As it ran pass a bus stop, many were cheering and laughing and taking videos,” he said.
Chickaboo was safely back at her home last night after Chow, who had perhaps run out of options, had a change of heart about sending his huge feathery friend to the farm.
Pic: Chow with Chickaboo last night.
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14-year-old Malaysian-born genius
KUALA LUMPUR — Malaysian-born Sharvin Jeyendran has been named by Mensa as Australia’s most intelligent adolescent, with an IQ score above that of noted physicist Stephen Hawking.
According to a 9News Perth programme, the 14-year-old Sacred Heart College student obtained an IQ score of 168 in the
intelligence organisation’s test, eight points above that of Hawking.
“When I grow up I want to be a biological scientist. I want to try find a cure for cancer,” he told the news programme.
“I also want to be a marine biologist to explore the seas and also have my own charity for all the poor people in the world.”
According to the report, the teen was born in Malaysia, but migrated to Australia with his parents, who were both lawyers.
His mother Deva Jeyendran said she knew her son was special when he started speaking in sentences when only just nine months old.
"He started talking like a normal child, like how a two or three-year-old could speak, with the proper sentences and grammar," she told 9News.
"We were encouraging him. I think any parent will do this and need to do this. Kids' brains are like sponges, they will absorb whatever."
Mensa classifies individuals with IQ scores above the 98th per centile in standardised intelligence tests as geniuses. This variably translates to scores of above 132 on the Stanford–Binet scale and above 148 on the Cattell intelligence test.
The report did not state which particular intelligence scale was used to score Sharvin.
Cleaner with generous heart
By Praven Suppayah
PETALING JAYA — Imagine earning a salary less than RM1,500 per month sweeping and cleaning at a theme park for 12 hours a day, and you stumble upon a bag containing nearly RM10,000; seven times more than what you get monthly.
What would you do?
Before you could even answer that question, meet Paruvathy Marutan, 57, a highly-principled woman who works as a cleaner in Sunway Lagoon theme park.
With 21 years of service for the same organisation, she was put in a situation by fate on Wednesday when she discovered an unattended bag on a bench within the theme park’s vicinity.
The bag contained RM1,850, 7,244 Saudi Riyal (RM7,778) and three passports.
Paruvathy, who was going for lunch, noticed it. Inside, she found a thick stack of money tied with a rubber band.
She approached other tourists nearby and asked if they knew the owner of the bag.
“I suspected it belonged to an Arab because I saw a key chain that looked like it had Arabic writing on it,” she said.
After her futile efforts in finding the owner of the bag, she sent the bag to the lost and found counter.
“I did not earn such a big sum of money. I do not feel good about stealing it,” she said.
“It was not a ‘lucky day’ as many of my colleagues had told me. I felt like God was testing me that day.
“Although I have not been out of the country, I know how important passports are. Tourists may have to go through a lot of hassle when they lose their passports.”
Paruvathy said she respects every tourist who visits her second home, Sunway Lagoon. She has so much passion for her work and she knows the theme park in and out.
“I want them to come to my house (Sunway Lagoon), have a great time enjoying the fun rides and water park and leave happily. I would make sure they have a safe and fun time when they are in the theme park.”
She believes honesty is the best policy, no matter the temptation. The area where she found the bag has no closed-circuit television surveillance and she has advised the management to install them.
Paruvathy said she would not only have lost the trust of tourists but also Sunway Group founder and chairman Tan Sri Jeffrey Cheah and the management of the theme park if she had taken the money.
“My aim is to make sure Sunway Lagoon a great tourist attraction where visitors can have plenty of fun.”
When asked what she would do if the tourist gave her the money as a reward, she said: “I would accept it because it’s a generous gift. I will not reject such offers, but it’s unethical to take the money without their knowledge.”
Sunway Lagoon operations executive P. Gunalan praised Paruvathy, a senior cleaner, for being a gem of a person among the 40 staff members at the theme park.
In recognition of their services, Gunalan said the company would present awards every month.
“We have awards such as Integrity Award, Attendance Award, Employee of the Month and so on. We also give them a token of appreciation in the form of cash like a mini-bonus,” he said.
Paruvathy, who is unmarried, said she was not expecting any kind of reward but hoped her kind deeds would inspire others to do the same.
“Despite the media attention I get, the handshakes and congratulations from my supervisors and colleagues mean more than anything to me,” she said.
Paruvathy shows the bench where the bag of money was found on Thursday. — Picture by Zuraneeza Zulkifli