Until we feel alright

I’m really so blessed to have grown up on music like Fall Out Boy and Panic! At The Disco, bands who even after 10, 15 years in the industry are still making waves. To be able to see how much their sound has matured and changed over the years, and to see the way they’re influencing a whole new generation of teenagers with their music… is just indescribable. I mean, that was me, not too long ago (give or take 10 years, ahem), sitting at home and putting A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out on repeat, listening to demos on my crappy old Zen, and feeling like I’m part of my own little club. Listening to them again now definitely takes me back to that time.

Since their formation in 2004, Panic! has whittled down to two members and finally, now, just the one. Can I just say, I am living for Brendon’s energy onstage? Holy, backflip. It always makes me smile when performers look like they’re having the time of their lives on stage. Oh, just another day, getting paid to do what I love~

Eye can’t believe this

The strangest thing happened to me this morning. It all started when I woke up with a start at 9am when my McDonald’s surprise alarm rang and I realised I was going to be late for work. I quickly washed up and hurried to put on my contacts but then saw that they weren’t in the case. Where could they have been? The last time I put them on was on Thursday, when I had work. Could I have thrown them away? But there was still more than a week left to the end of the month! What a waste. Nevermind, no time to ponder. Moving on. I grabbed a new pair from the box, figured I’d put them on before work and rushed out of the house to catch my uber ride.

The whole time in the car I was looking out the window, feeling totally stumped because there’s no way I would’ve thrown the lenses away, not when the month wasn’t even up. And then… as I looked out at street signs, I realised that I had no issues making out all the words and oh my god, even license plate numbers were suddenly clear as day. What’s happening to me? Could this be the work of divine intervention? Did I suddenly have 20/20 eyesight? Was this like the time my brother broke his glasses in a boating incident and miraculously developed perfect eyesight and didn’t need glasses anymore?

With my heart pounding, I whipped out my mirror to double check… only to find… that my contacts were in my eyes. They were in my eyes ALL ALONG. I cannot even begin to describe how unbelievable this is. I mean, that would mean I haven’t taken them out since I first put them in on Thursday, THREE WHOLE DAYS AGO. Seriously, what in the world?! What were these magic contact lenses and why have my eyes not shrivelled up and fallen out of my sockets yet? Could I have woken up today in a daze and put on my contacts without realising? I don’t even know. Weird day.

So here’s the tea

Sometime late last year, I got completely hooked on RuPaul’s Drag Race, after watching a long clip of Adore Delano‘s best moments from Season 6. I watched the clip of Adore expecting nothing, but since then, I think I’ve watched it at least 3-4 times, I just adore Adore so much. She’s a queen. She’s hilarious, charming, so beautiful and confident, and always, always keeping it real. Love her. She actually did a show at Tab in February last year, and I’m kinda upset I never knew about it, or even if I did, I probably wouldn’t have been interested either.

“It is a competition but you don’t have to sabotage anybody on the way there.” – Adore Delano

Drag wasn’t something I knew much about but after this clip, it made me curious to find out more about this whole new world that I was so unfamiliar with. There are so many misconceptions about drag and drag queens, and coming from a third person’s point-of-view, I’m not exactly the best person to educate but I’m so fascinated about the art of it all – it’s not just about a bunch of guys putting on pretty glittery dresses and trying to pass off as girls, it’s about the performance of it, the character and the story behind their drag, the amount of effort and commitment that goes into it. Everyone has their own reasons for doing drag, and that’s the beauty of it, really.

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With that said, Season 8 just started and like with any reality competition, I already have my favourites. This is the first season I’m watching fully because I only watched behind-the-scenes and ‘best of’ clips of the previous two seasons on YouTube. Season 6 was awesome because you’ve got huge personalities and talents like Bianca Del Rio and Adore Delano, and I guess Season 7 was lacklustre in comparison because the queens weren’t as funny or memorable. I did love how cool and laidback Pearl was and Violet Chachki‘s looks were always spot on. Plus, those two were hands down some of the prettiest queens I’ve seen on the show.

“I have too much class to be trying to tell somebody that they don’t deserve to be in the Top 3. I’ll tell you why I deserve to be in the Top 3, I’m not gonna like, throw someone under the bus and try to tell you why you don’t deserve this.” – Pearl Liaison

We’re two episodes into the new season and already, I have had it with Acid Betty. She’s fierce and she consistently turns it out but I hate people who don’t show any respect for others because they think they’re more superior. I remember the first challenge in Episode 1 was to do a photoshoot with the past winners and she was all sarcastic about it during her personal interview, “Yes, RuPaul, very intimidating…sitting next to these wannabe-ass drag queens…” And when she was told that she was blocking Sharon Needles in the shot, she actually replied out loud, “Well. Then she should move.” …Rude.

These are past WINNERS you’re talking about, queens who’ve all proven themselves already and this is literally your first challenge since stepping onto the show. That’s just not the right attitude to have. It’s good to be confident about yourself, but there’s no reason to put others down in order to make yourself look better. So even though the judges constantly have praise for her drag, if you’re a shitty person inside, sooner or later that’s just gonna come back and bite you in the ass and you’ll have no one to blame for it but yourself. Truth.

On the other hand, Kim Chi is possibly the sweetest, cutest little anime thing to ever walk the earth, except maybe minus the little part because she is 6’3. But I just love her LOVE HER LOVE HER. During the same photoshoot in Episode 1, the photographer told her she was blocking one of the queens and she just went, “Oops! Sorry!” and scooted a little in the opposite direction. Adorable. And in Episode 2, she was struggling so much with the team dancing challenge because of her two left feet and felt soooo bad because she didn’t want to let her team down. She ended up in the bottom but still made it a point to comfort the other two girls who were likely gonna lipsync for their lives. Bless her soul. You just can’t help but root for her.

I love that a lot of the drag queens this season seem to be genuinely nice, good-hearted people, who don’t always have it out for the others. Others I like and would like to see more of in the coming episodes are Bob the Drag Queen, Thorgy Thor, Naomi Smalls and Cynthia Lee Fontaine. Argh, is it Tuesday yet?!

Travelling and other things, but mostly VIXX

April 19 is the date of my final presentation of my final university semester but April 19 not only means freeing myself for good from the shackles of school life, because now it also means a new beginning in more ways than one…….VIXX comeback!!! *sad trombone anti-climactic sound* Sorry, if you were expecting something more profound and philosophical. Feeling just a little overwhelmed here because finally, a comeback! But more importantly, it’s happening as the same time I’ll be in Korea!

It’s just so amazing to me, how of all the times to make their comeback, it happens to coincide with the 4 weeks out of the 52 weeks in a year that I’ll be in Korea. There can’t be any other explanation for it… it’s… it’s fate. My destiny to see them during a promotion cycle. I guess I have no choice but to accept this fate. *proceeds to rewrite entire itinerary and plan it around VIXX’s schedule* Okay fine, I guess I’m only half-kidding…

I’ll be in Korea from April 27 and fly back on May 24, but will be spending the first few days in Busan with my mum. I’m actually really excited to be going back to Busan! I wonder how much it’s changed… It’s still quite unbelievable to me that I spent an entire four months in this beautiful city.

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All the huge lilac clusters that stretch out for miles are all cherry blossom trees!
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Igidae Park was torture to climb but holds some of the bluest seas I’ve ever seen

This place will always hold special memories and it’s gonna be that one thing that’ll likely bond Kiat Jiun, Gen and I for a long, long time, even despite not meeting up as often as we’d like to now. Busan will forever be what connects us together, and I love that. Sometimes I’ll see Kiat Jiun in class and we’ll catch up now and then, but most of the time, I have no clue what’s going on with her… which is kinda strange. To think, for a period of time, we spent practically every single day together as both classmates and roommates. We took almost all the same classes, had the same circle of friends and went everywhere together – even travelling to Japan! Life can be so amazing and unpredictable sometimes.

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Three Musketeers teehee

But I digress. After my mum leaves, I’ll spend a day and a half by myself (hopefully VIXX has something on or maybe I’ll try and make it for Leo‘s Mata Hari arrival just for fun) before Cindy, Fel, Alex and Mel arrive in Seoul. Squotongs, unite! Buuut if I’m being completely honest, I’m a little wary about travelling together as a group of five because I feel like there’s going to have to be a loooot of compromising.

Because I’ve been to Korea, I’m quite clear about what I want to do or don’t want to do (not that the list is very extensive), especially since I’ll already be doing some of the things with my mum the week before. So I’m afraid I’m gonna end up feeling like the bossy hard-ass that tries to impose her opinions on others (which is kinda a new feeling because on most travel trips, I’m pretty hands-off when it comes to the itinerary). Either that, or because two of them are first-time visitors (and thus willing to try everything) and the other two can be more free with their money, I may end up feeling obligated to spend on food or activities that I would probably prefer to spend elsewhere. Team player and all that. And I’d hate to keep harping on money, so I might just go along with it (as I weep on the inside).

Of course, I’m still really, really excited about spending time together in a place we all love, but I can’t help but worry. Travelling and living together for two weeks is a lot different from occasional outings to the mall and one another’s houses. But now that VIXX has entered the (love) equation (hurhur), I think it does make things a little easier! We can bond over that no matter what, and we’re all keen to try and make it for some schedules while we’re there so that does fill up a chunk of our two-week itinerary. Yep, gonna be lugging all my official Starlight merch there. No doubt about it.

And if anyone’s been counting, yes, that does leave quite a few days where I’m by myself (hashtag HanSeoulo). It’s mostly an opportunity to prove to myself that I can do it. I haven’t decided yet what I’ll do during this time but I’ll probably try and go to all the places that I didn’t manage to in the three weeks before that. And if VIXX happens to have a schedule too… well. :-)

Nailed it

These days, I’ve been obsessed with nail stickers. They’re nothing new, but I guess it’s only just hit me how convenient they are, and with a ton of designs to choose from, I’m kinda kicking myself for not having discovered them earlier. I’ve played around with nail stickers previously of course, but never really took to them because they don’t seem to stick on too well on my nails. I first tried Etude House’s ones long ago (didn’t like them), and then gave them another try using some other Korean brand (I think it was Aritaum). Meh, still not convinced.

Recently though, Cindy passed me some Hello Kitty ones that she got off Taobao. I tried them on with little to no expectations, and was really pleasantly surprised! They were so easy to stick on, and looked super cute. I was too lazy to put on top coat and instead of filing the excess sticky part away (so that the edges adhere to your nail better), I snipped them away with nail clippers. Big no-no. When I woke up, most of it had folded down and stuck onto each other, so I had to remove them completely, which was such a waste. But hey, at least it was a learning curve.

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Not the best application technique, but…

Since then, I’ve bought like 8 different designs off Taobao. I put Doraemon ones on earlier today and look how adorable they are! The trick is to put on base coat before sticking them on. I prefer to do one hand at a time, because usually by the time I get to the second hand, the base coat is too dry and the stickers don’t stick on as well. After you choose the stickers that match the size of each nail, stick them on and file away the excess (don’t clip them off!). Finally, finish off with top coat (I usually do two coats) so that they last longer. They usually last about a week, like this. :D

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Hello Kitty and Mickey Mouse nail stickers!

For those who are interested, you can search nail stickers on Taobao and you’ll get a ton of results. I bought mine from a few different sellers and they were all ~$1 each. They have all sorts of designs, not just character ones like the ones I got. I’m still figuring out what’s the best way to remove these stickers, without leaving behind a sticky mess or ripping the top layer of your nail right off, so if anyone has any tips for me, I’d be more than happy to hear them!