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Australian rants on TikTok about a man who “reserved” a table in the food court in Sydney with his notepad

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Visit any crowded food court or kopitiam in Singapore during lunchtime and you will come across empty tables littered with personal items – a sign that something has been “hacked”.

Yes, it is a rather strange national custom that has been grudgingly accepted, whether one agrees with it or not.

But Australian TikToker Chloe Baradinski used the platform to ask her followers: “Guys, who is in the wrong here?” before describing an argument she had with someone in a Sydney food court.

According to Chloe, after getting her lunch — a bowl of Laksa — she decided to sit down at a table on which lay a lonely notepad.

“Maybe someone just left it behind,” she explained, assuming the person would come back to pick it up once they realized they had lost it.

Well, someone came back, but he was holding a plate of food. Then he admonished her for sitting at his “chopped” table.

“Reserve a table? At a food court?” Chloe asked incredulously, then explained, “I'm sorry, but you can't reserve tables.”

Chloe says he objected to him putting his notepad on the table to order his food and even challenged her by asking, “Are those your rules?”

To which Chloe answered him with her own question.

“He was like a 50-year-old man who was so rude, so, so rude to me,” she recounted, saying that even after she offered him a seat, he said, “I don't want to sit next to you.”

After saying he would then have to find a new table, Chloe insisted that “you can't reserve a table in a food court when it's like 12:30pm. [pm] on Tuesday Peak lunchtime.

Her video has since been viewed over 585,000 times and received over a thousand comments, many of which seem to agree with her stance.

There were also plenty of Singaporeans in the comments, with many declaring, “This is the norm here in Singapore!” Some even recommended a trip to our little red dot to experience it for themselves.

“Very common in Singapore, it is called 'Chope,'” wrote one online user, before describing the various items commonly used there, such as tissue paper and telephones.

One even hilariously quoted Chow Yun Fat’s character from Pirates of the Caribbean – At World’s End “Captain Sao Feng would say: ‘Welcome to Singapore.’”

Photos: Chloe Baradinski/TikTok, Under the Angsana Tree