Famous? But I've never heard of it

This may not come as a shock to you, but I'm a bit blur.

I don't know a lot of things.

Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course, since there are just too many things in the universe to know.

But I'm troubled when so many people seem to know something that I don't.

For instance, I didn't know there's a Singapore rapper named Shigga Shay.

Did you?

His real name is Pek Jin Shan and I had never heard of him either.

But many people must know who he is for his song LimPeh to top the local iTunes chart, outselling singers I've actually heard of like Pink, Lana Del Ray and Justin Timberlake.

How did this happen?

I thought local musicians are only allowed to become famous by joining local rip-offs of Pop Idol like The Final 1 on Channel 5. You can be a star only after Ken Lim says you are.

I also didn't know there's such a thing called the Malaysian Super League.

Is this the Malaysian version of the Justice League with superhero members like Cicak Man, Boleh Man, Warna Woman, Green Ketupat and Aaron Aziz?

No, it's the football league that Singapore's LionsXII won last Tuesday by beating Felda United.

Needless to say, I had never heard of Felda United too. I've heard of The Legend Of Zelda though. Does that count?

But I suppose my ignorance of Shigga Shay and regional football is excusable since I'm not a big fan of local music or sports.

Then two weeks ago, The New Paper reported the death of "cheng tng hawker icon" Andrew Lim Seng Ann of Ye Lai Xiang Cheng Tng.

Three weeks earlier, The Straits Times had reported that another hawker, Mr Ng Ba Eng of "well-known" wonton noodle stall Eng's Noodle House, also died.

Then there's the much-hyped SingTel Hawker Heroes Challenge at Newton Circus Food Centre on Sunday night, a bunch of "hawker heroes" were shortlisted to face British celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay.

They were: Mr Ryan Koh of 328 Katong Laksa Mr Tan Chee Eng of Eng Ho Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee Mr Ang Kiam Meng of Jumbo Seafood Restaurant Madam Jenny Lim of Hai Sheng Carrot Cake Mr Ng Chang Siang of Hill Street Char Kway Teow Madam Betty Kong of Kay Lee Roast Meat Joint Mr Choong Yee Hong of New Lucky Claypot Chicken Rice Mr Teo Aik Cheng of Noo Cheng Adam Road Prawn Mee Madam Gwee Guek Hwa of Outram Park Ya Hua Rou Gu Cha Mr Malik Hassan of Selera Rasa Nasi Lemak Mr Haji Mohammed and Mr Al Malik Faisal of Sin Ming Roti Prata Madam Foo Kui Lian of Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice

Okay, my question is, am I the only person in Singapore who has never heard of any of these hawkers (dead or alive) or their stalls?

Well, except Jumbo Seafood Restaurant.

But then the Jumbo Seafood Restaurant guy can't really be called a hawker since, as the name suggests, Jumbo Seafood Restaurant is a restaurant and not a hawker stall.

And it's not just a restaurant, but a chain of restaurants. You might as well call Ronald McDonald a hawker.

I can't wait to see how Ramsay will react when he finds out. I hope the host of The F Word uses the name of his show.

I know I get confused by another F word whenever someone describes some food stall at such and such place as "famous".

How can something be famous if I've never heard of it?

Granted, I'm not K. F. Seetoh or a foodie. But if you have to be K. F. Seetoh or a foodie to have heard of the food stall, then how famous can it be?

Granted, I'm also a bit blur, but... Actually, I have no argument for that.

Just because a food stall is featured in a newspaper or magazine article, or one of the gazillion food shows on TV doesn't necessarily make it famous.

It's only "famous" to the people who happened to see the article and TV show.

But one thing's for sure.

After Sunday night's SingTel Hawker Heroes Challenge with Ramsay, the stalls (and one restaurant chain) of the three "hawker heroes" chosen to face him - Tian Tian Chicken Rice, 328 Katong Laksa and Jumbo Seafood - can legitimately be called famous.

Even to me.

They couldn't be more well-known if Shigga Shay had rapped about them.

Now if only someone could arrange a face-off between Ramsay and Ken Lim, that could be more exciting than a Malaysian Super League match.

SingTel boleh?