Monday, January 20 2020


Click go the shears, boys

Update: April, 07/2015 - 08:45

Some students of class 6A4 at Long Ha Secondary in southern Binh Phuoc Province recently returned home from school with weird, choppy hairdos. It looked like their locks were the work of someone with no aesthetic sense. But one could hardly blame the hair stylist, Tran Thi Huong, as she was basically just a music teacher.

But while she had no training as a stylist, she was once the school's disciplinary overseer. She also had a pair of scissors. Huong said she found student Ho Tat Cong had grown his hair so long that "it almost covered his eyes".

Determined to bring him into line with the school's conservative dress code, she sat him in front of the class and cut off his forelocks . Huong then proceeded to freely style the hairdo's of eight other students to show she was acting with equanimity.

Later, she flashed her scissors again on two more students in class 6A4 - and two more students from class 6A7, whose hair was also deemed "unacceptable". Some students were reported to have burst into tears as much of their crowning glory hit the floor.

Needless to say, parents were furious once they found out what happened to their boys' hair. Huong then apologised to the students - and their parents.

The school's management board said Huong was not even allowed to tell students if their hairdos were inappropriate, let alone take matters into her own hands. The standard procedure apparently is to tell parents that their kids needed a hair cut.

"She used to be in charge of school disciplinary. It could have been a spontaneous reaction on her part," said a school board member. "We are looking into the matter and will decide what to do depending on how much regret she shows."

Honesty: alive and well

Pham Ngoc Minh Thu, a resident from central Da Nang City, felt her heart stop for a moment when she realised she must have dropped her wallet on the way home from a clothing shop. It was nothing short of a disaster for Thu and her family as inside the wallet was an I-phone 5, VND15.5 million (US$730) in cash, and a bank-issued savings book revealing a whopping VND1.3 billion ($61,000).

Still in a daze, she received a call from a stranger who asked to meet her in a motel to return the wallet. Staying on the safe side, her family called the police and asked a few policemen to escort Thu in case blackmail was involved, because of the large amount of money involved.

The entourage arrived at the rendezvous-point early and the set up was what police called a classic sting operation. Two policemen followed Thu as she walked to meet the mysterious stranger.

The finder turned out to be a local student named Le Doan Y, age 24, who was working at a part-time job at the motel. After he gave Thu back her wallet, police revealed themselves and asked him to accompany them to the local police station for questioning.

All the commotion could have been avoided if police had first checked the contents of the wallet. Everything was returned to the victim. Not one single dong was missing.

Thu said she couldn't believe it at first. "In this day and age, I'd say the chance was one out of a thousand," she said. "He just gave it back to me without asking for anything in return."

Have you ever lost something and was afraid that without "compensation" you wouldn't see your stuff again? Did you bring the police with you then? Ah, ye of little faith. — VNS

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