|Why do you think listeners are like that?
Patrick: I think one of the reasons could be, as far as radio programmes are concern,
because radio talk show are relatively new in Malaysia. People are not used to having
this platform to air their views, and to discuss with other people, and to share
ideas, to have differing opinions aired. Because for many years, we have had this
big brother syndrome. What the government say, you just say okay. But as we head
towards Vision 2020, we must have the ability to sort of think. "Eh, wait a
minute, I know that's what you are saying, but can you tell me the reason behind
it. Can I offer you my suggestions?" Things like that, they haven't arrived
at that stage yet, I don't think.
There is a certain sense of angst and frustration on your part. Does that contribute
to your personality on air?
Patrick: Actually it's a mixture of things. In person, I'm not like that. In fact,
last night, it was very clearly illustrated. I was at a function with another DJ
(whom I shall not name) who's very friendly on air. So we went to this function and
of course people approach us and say, "Hey, how are you Patrick? You don't remember
me, do you? Slap me on the back, and I tolerate all that. But this other DJ took
offence when these things were done to her. She was actually quite curt with the
people, you know, "I am not your friend. Don't slap me on the back and don't
put your arms around me and say we are pals just because you have been listening
to my radio programme," which quite surprised me.
So on the air, I have this personality that I am very intolerant, but in real life,
I am quite the opposite. I take a lot more shit than I should.
Is that consciously done?
Patrick: Part of it is a conscious effort because it is just a radio personality
that you develop. I think on the radio, people would rather have a character like
that rather than somebody very bland. I have always maintained that radio is this:
Radio is real life, and TV is fantasy.
Patrick: Radio is real life because radio should talk about things that matter to
you; radio is a medium that you can listen to all day---while you are driving, while
you are working, while you are jogging. Radio will tell you things that matter to
you---whether it is hot, cold, raining, not raining, flooding, not flooding, traffic
jam or no traffic jam---things that matter to you on a daily basis. Whereas, television
is pure fantasy. You finish your work, you put the kids in front of the TV. Carry
on, and I surrender my brain to the box for a couple of hours." That's it.
So April Fool jokes should be part of our daily lives, or our yearly lives, at
Patrick: Shouldn't it? I mean, in your work day, sometimes your friends do play pranks
on you, right? On a talk show situation like radio, it is just like people getting
together at a round table or stall and just yakking...talking to each other about
the things that happened to them...what made them happy, what made them angry, what
made them frustrated. At the end of the day, nothing much is solved, but you know,
it is a way of communication, life.
Do you think this backlash, as far as the duck issue is concerned, has anything
to do with you being Patrick Teoh? If Alan Zachariah had done it, for example, would
he have had the same kind of backlash?
Patrick: I don't know whether it will come out sounding egotistical, but I think
to a certain extent, it has. There are a lot of people who don't like me. Worse,
there are a lot of people in the department, I feel, who don't like me.
Which department is this?
Patrick: In radio. I'm not naive enough to believe that everybody loves me.
Patrick: They don't like me for a variety of reasons. Maybe, because I get a lot
of press. Maybe, I do things that they feel shouldn't be allowed or I break the rules
or...so many things. Or I drive big cars, they don't.
Is there a conscious effort on your part to be different?
Patrick: Conscious effort? No, I am not making a conscious effort to be different.
I just loved radio as a medium. I go in there, and I do the best job I can. I have
always love radio as a medium. Otherwise, I wouldn't bother with this Radio 4 shit.
I am not making any money out of it. I mean, publicity wise and all that, I don't
need it. I have a thriving business which is going very well.
Why do you do it?
Patrick: Why do I do it? It is because I love the medium, I love to be on the radio,
I love to talk to people, I love people to yell at me, I love to yell at people.
Well, I mean, just to have a good time, you know.
So the listeners should take you in that light instead of, being a vendetta, for
Patrick: But the listeners do. Like I said, it is not the listeners' fault, you know.
It is the management's fault, I think. Because they look at the wrong perspective.
The listeners are reacting the way I want them to react . You say, "Patrick
Teoh is the best talk show," and you say, "What a load of crap---he should
be taken off and sacked." I mean that's life what.
That's a radio personality, and as a radio station; I don't care, Patrick, if people
hate you or love you. Just make sure they don't become indifferent to you because
it affects my station. Patrick Teoh can be the most hated person in Malaysia, but
because of that, people tune in and listen to my station, my job is done.