Background information of storyworld
Traditional Teochew yam mooncake making
Dying tradition of Teochew/dialect pastry bakeries
(read more: https://www.tnp.sg/news/singapore/keeping-traditions-alive)
Wearable thermoelectric generators for human body heat harvesting. Researchers at North Carolina State University have developed a new design for harvesting body heat and converting it into electricity for use in wearable electronics. The experimental prototypes are lightweight, conform to the shape of the body, and can generate far more electricity than previous lightweight heat harvesting technologies.
(read research paper: https://www-sciencedirect-com.libproxy1.nus.edu.sg/science/article/pii/S0306261916312594)
A discriminating and divided society where heritage tradition practitioners (traditionalists) are scorned and ridiculed by modernists who think they are too cool for traditions. Exacerbating the issue is a law that ruled all forms of traditional/heritage arts and crafts illegal. As a result, all physical spaces and shops for such practices were seized by the government. Passionate traditionalists who refused to succumb and let their practices die out developed a wearable studio for their own practice. They continued to hone their crafts in the dark, while being wary of the modernists and heritage breakers (police force that apprehend traditionalists who carry out illegal practices) constantly hot on their heels.
Selected microfiction of the 3
A hot piping traditional Teochew yam mooncake sits in the middle of Yun’s palms, warming her hands as she wrapped her fingers around it. It is December, and the murky water of the underground sewage was still as rock, frozen. However, Yun’s heart was warm. “There is nothing like home and heritage,” Yun muttered under her misty breath, smiling as she gazed earnestly at the traditional pastry that she is so proud of.
“Damned traditionalists!” A hostile voice pierced through the silence and broke Yun’s gaze of fondness. Without hesitation, Yun packed up her equipments that she used to make the mooncake in mere seconds. When she developed her own wearable studio for making traditional Teochew yam mooncakes, she has already prepared for the worst scenario, and made sure that the design allowed her to keep the items quickly and efficiently while escaping from modernists and heritage breakers. Yun ran in the opposite direction of where the voice came from. However, she was soon surrounded by a team of modernists who left her with no escape route in the dark.
“Stop!” Yun cried to no avail as the modernists seized her wearable tools while pinning her to the ground. One of them took her glove with thermoelectric generators, attached the sensors that harvest human body heat rapidly to himself, and started burning her equipments while laughing menacingly. Yun can only watch helplessly amidst the tears forming in her eyes. “You are next, vermin.”
Complete revision (background information)
In an idealistic world where weaponry and militarism are obselete, when conflict arises, people settle their differences through a battle of traditional heritage pastry making. The one who is better at the craft wins, and the other accepts defeat without argument.
As a result of such conflict resolution methods, traditional heritage pastry making became the gentlemen’s arts. The trend of making traditional heritage pastry revived and went rampant. Everyone wants to hone their craft so that they can win during challenges. Seeing an opportunity for consumerism, a capitalist company, The Hare, developed a wearable studio and tools, called GentleHare, for making traditional Teochew yam mooncake. The wearable studio and tools were an instant hit and sold like hot cakes. People can now battle one another on the go in the streets to resolve conflicts, instead of being restricted to the kitchen.
Complete revision (microfiction)
“Let’s settle this like gentlemen, and let our craft speak for itself,” said the man in front of me. I nodded my head, straightening my GentleHare fedora and vest, ready for battle.
I was out to buy a birthday present for my Mum. While picking out a pendant in the shop, another man eyed the same piece of jewellery and both of us reached out to it at the same time. Unfortunately, that pendant was the last piece, and I really wanted to buy it for my Mum. I figured that the other guy must have really wanted to purchase it for his loved one as well. Unable to reach a compromise, we knew that there was only one way out – to settle this like gentlemen.
“10 minutes start now.” I proceeded to make a traditional Teochew yam mooncake, confident in my skills imparted to me by my Dad. After all, my Dad is a renowned chef and pastry maker, dubbed as the “Gentleman of all Gentlemen”. He has never lost a single challenge. To add on, I have the latest edition of GentleHare that boasts improved thermoelectric generators for harvesting human heat more efficiently. This allows me to save time off the deep drying process to focus on the other steps. There is no way I would lose. I remembered my Dad’s words like the holy grail, and made sure that every single step of the mooncake making process is flawless. As I stole a glance at the other man, he stumbled over making the spiral shape of the mooncake. At that moment, I knew my victory was secured.
Teo Zi Lin – A0160163R