Taxi Driver with PhD, dont play play okay

Taxi Driver with PhD, don't play play okay

Chanced upon this blog written by a guy who professed to be “probably the only taxi driver in this world with a PhD from Stanford and a proven track record of scientific accomplishments”.

The man, Cai Mingjie (as identified via Tomorrow.SG), wrote in his blog introduction: “I have been forced out of my research job at the height of my scientific career, and unable to find another one, for reasons I can only describe as something ‘uniquely Singapore’. As a result, I am driving taxi to make a living and writing these real life stories just to make the dull job a little more interesting. I hope that these stories are interesting to you too.”

The blog was started on 6 April 2009, early this year. In his first blog entry, the man described how he used to a principal investigator at the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IMCB) at ASTAR Singapore, a place where he had worked for 16 years. That was till an influx of foreign talents came in and he got retrenched from his job. Although he was informed of the retrenchment in 2007, he was unable to secure another job even till his termination in May 2008. By November 2008, he decided to become a taxi driver.

The blog reads like a novel of sort, about a scientist-turned-taxi-driver, diligently documenting quirky observations he made while driving on the road – the passengers he met, the various changes coming to our society.

I do not know this guy in person, but I like his 能屈能伸 attitude. I feel for his plight though. It is a waste of human capital when skill sets and academic qualification do not match with the job a person is holding. Definitely not a healthy trend if we see more and more Singaporeans in such a predicament.

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