2017

Hi, I’m not dead!

2017 has been nothing short of crazy thus far – I’ve been silent on this blog since November because I just didn’t have anything I wanted to write about. My heart wasn’t in it, my head wasn’t in it and emotionally 2016 was quite terrible. 2017, I hoped, would be a much better year, and it is.

That’s not to say a lot hasn’t happened in order to get to where I am now. And then from ‘nothing to write about’ life got a little bit crazy and this blog of mine got put on the back burner.

I’m in a much better place now – happier, better clarity of mind and it’s kind of like forcing myself into this situation is helping me progress towards my goals and generally getting my life on track.

bernielow_beanmylife

I started grad school in January and while I’m still quite lost, I’m less lost than when I first walked onto campus and attended my first class. I have one exam and some TA duties to settle before my first semester is over. Time is passing by really fast, and it feels like longer than the four (almost five, now) months that have passed.

I am getting older. There are so many implications in that statement.

I am learning what it means to get older, what it means being in my twenties, what it means to be human.

There is so much to learn.

I really have missed writing, especially when I read someone else’s blog – I love having a place where I can look back and read my memories immortalized in words. There are just some things that need to be written about, some memories that shouldn’t be left slowly fading away in my mind.

So many things have happened in 2017, will be happening in 2017.

And I am not alone in this.

Cheers to a great 8 more months ahead!

Till next time,
xoxo
Bernie

New (Overdue) Vlogs!

I finally stopped procrastinating and posted up two new vlogs on my YouTube Channel! Finally after six months of inactivity. I still haven’t edited the rest of the footage (plus years old footage) which hopefully I’ll get to sometime in this century.

This first one is of GRADUATION DAY!! I made a brief blog post about it (and the hakama) but the video was small snippets of the day itself. It was really quite hectic and I barely managed to meet all the friends I wanted to because it was the only day I had to print all the copies of my academic certs I needed from the machine in school that had a line snaking all the way outside of the school building.

It was also equally awkward because my Thesis Advisor/Seminar Tutor was overseas so I had to crash another Seminar so I could get my certificate. I had to sit in and listen to weepy graduates share their fondest moment in school with the rest of the group while I was awkwardly in the corner hoping to grab my things and RUN (also I knew the people in the room but more on an acquaintance level so really it was no place for me to hear all these weepy nostalgic anecdotes).

BUT YES it was indeed a fun day! I don’t really think it needs its own blog post any more but who knows.

Second vlog is of our one day in Nagoya which basically we did nothing but go to the castle due to Travel Fatigue. Travelling and moving all the heavy luggage to another place is no joke. Plus it was actually the second time we moved. Previously stayed in Osaka, then up to Kyoto then Nagoya before we moved to Tokyo. VERY TIRING.

Nagoya castle was nice! The bushotai/edo period warlord stage play? thing was cool, we didn’t go in and watch but did see the parade on grounds and their demachi which was CRAZY. Those fans man, those fans.

Had some awesome peppery chicken wings which were great.

So yeah, just a realllllly quick update on the new vlogs I finally got up!

I really miss Japan but I need to be back in Singapore plus I’m starting the new chapter in my life in January so….things are happening!!

Till next time,
xoxo
Bernie

When Being Overweight Holds You Back

Nobita from Find Your Love In Japan found my Overweight in Japan video I made a while back, and has featured it and interviewed me via Skype for some videos of his. He wants to emphasize how weight shouldn’t hold you back from enjoying Japan, from dating in Japan.

“Trust me, your size does NOT matter in Japan. The person who cares about your size is ONLY YOU. I know you can’t believe this, but in reality, You are actually very attractive. I’m 100% sure about that. I really hope foreign women don’t hold themselves back in Japan.” – Nobita

He’s trying to drive across the message that size is not an issue.


It shouldn’t hold you back from travelling to Japan. It shouldn’t leave you with regrets that something could have been so much more.

Yet it still does. 

When I look back at that weepy video I did (which will probably haunt me forever, I can’t bring myself to watch it again) it seems like such a silly thing doesn’t it.

A lot of comments agree.

It’s not being fat that is the issue they all say. It is INSECURITIES that are the problem.

“You’re not really fat! You are just insecure!” 
“Fat people just like to blame others for their problems. They’re just lazy and don’t care about themselves”

But where do these insecurities stem from?

From being OVERWEIGHT. 

From how body size is portrayed in the media.

From watching plus size female comedians in Japan being the butt of jokes and laughed at (many times related to their weight).

From being told you are ugly because you look a certain way.

From the branding that fat is a bad word.

From the lack of positive role models.

From being unable to love yourself.

It’s not easy to be positive.

I am scared to do things because I am overweight.

My insecurities about my weight have prevented me from trying new things because I think I’ll be judged for it. People will stare and laugh – hah, look at that fat person. What, she wants to do -activity name-? I don’t think the equipment can handle her weight!

It’s easy to tell someone not to give a fuck.

It’s easy to say you won’t care what others think.

But when you’ve been dealing with it for years sometimes it’s easier to listen to that voice laughing at you and just curling into a ball and feeling stupid for wanting different.

Having too much time on my hands inevitably leads me to overthink even more than I already do and it also fosters the perfect environment for wallowing in self pity and for the insecurities to hit home even harder than usual. It’s even worse since coming back to Singapore has perpetuated a sedentary lifestyle that had been developing in Japan when my school schedule was sporadic to the point where I only had to leave my room 2 times a week.

Now in Singapore the train station is less than 5 minutes away. The bus stop is just downstairs. Walking is beyond minimal, averaging 3000 steps a day when in Japan it was 10,000 or more daily. Coupled with Singapore’s terrible weather that makes everything a chore and the lack of freedom being back entails.

Most days have developed into routine. Look into mirror. Hate everything I see. Put something on. Hate everything I see. Throw something else on. Also hate it. Realise that everything will look terrible since it’s a terrible base to start with. So fat. Fat. Fat. Fat. Fat. Fat. just echoes over and over.

Me: what a disgusting fat fuck you are
Also Me: fat then fat lo

Me: everyone is going to judge me cause i’m fat
Also Me: fuq it let them see my fat ass struggling wtv

Swinging between each pendulum of self loathing and trying to be positive is draining. I hate myself even more because it feels like it has spiraled out of control, like nothing is going right. Nothing is going to improve. That all I’ve said and thought is nothing but hypocrisy.

Some days it feels like everything is swallowed up in negativity and nothing can save it, while some days I just want to fight back harder and embrace it and stop letting these insecurities get the better of me.

This is my reality.

I don’t take much pictures anymore. I started trying to force myself to go out and walk, attempt to jog. Actively cutting carbs, cooking more. Telling myself I can do this.

Break out of the cycle.

Stop letting your weight hold you back.

It’s so silly isn’t it? Being scared to enter a gym. Being scared to squeeze between tables to get to a seat at an eatery. Being scared to browse things in shops.

But it doesn’t feel silly when you think it. When you begin to limit yourself from things consciously or unconsciously.

It’s easy isn’t it – sitting at home and typing this.

But sometimes this makes it easier to cope with. To deal with when you see the words in writing. Thoughts are fleeting, simply pushed to the back of the mind, deleted. But words, words carry more weight.

I’ve tried before and failed. This time, or at least one time, I want to try and succeed.

And then there can be a post titled “How I overcame being overweight”. Hah.

Till next time,
Bernie

Dining deals, cashback and other online shopping offers at ShopBack!

 

One of the things I’m thankful to technology about is

ONLINE SHOPPING!

It makes life so much easier especially since it’s so difficult to find plus size clothes in stores….and online shopping now gives you access to stores all over the world that you can purchase from!!! I tend to find that the few local plus size retailers either don’t have styles I like or are a bit out of budget so I like splurging on overseas web stores!

But as a broke student who shops too much it hurts the wallet to keep spending although there are so many awesome things I want to buy….so how?

Get CASHBACK when shopping lor!

ShopBack contacted me to do a review of their site which…you guessed it…gives you cashback when you shop with their merchants. I actually heard about the site from my cousin when we were booking accommodation in Japan earlier this year but we booked via airbnb so I made an account but didn’t use it.

This time I went to look at what they have and I realised that they work with quite a few sites I shop at – ASOS, Zalora (sigh I just bought stuff from there a few days ago!!!!) and Taobao Singapore.

If you haven’t heard of Taobao…

Taobao is this wonderful online store directory in China which means everything is really cheap and there is almost anything you could want!! I used to do Taobao sprees with my friends and we bought shoes, accessories, plushies, clothes and a lot of things. It was a lot more troublesome because you had to use an agent so there were a lot of middleman fees.

Plus back then there was no ShopBack and part of me feels a bit sad to have only found out about it so late – cannot claim cashback on all previous purchases 🙁

But better late than never!

So how exactly does ShopBack work? (Step by step here if you don’t want to watch the video)

Quite simple!

And it’s not only online retailers that have worked with ShopBack. There is Honestbee where you can buy groceries from. I personally like walking in supermarket aisles (especially in the big ones like Fairprice Extra) cause it’s quite relaxing but not everyone has the luxury to spend so long walking or taking a trip there. Also admit it la, technology has made us some level of lazy so all these online conveniences are really spoiling us.

Like how we can order delivery from so many food places now, a few years ago there was only fast food delivery. So if you want to order food delivery you can also look for a FoodPanda voucher on ShopBack!

They also worked with sites like Booking.com and Groupon so you can get cashback when buying all sorts of things. I know quite a few people get credit cards with rebates but you need to spend a minimum sum before you get those rebates and not everyone can reach that so it’s good to have an alternate option.

Finally don’t say I bojio

Anyone who likes shopping will know the best word to hear or see is….

SALE!!

There are always flash sales, time sales, holiday sales, end of season sales…any reason under the sun is an excuse for a sale or some holiday (not that I’m complaining).

Like how 11.11 looks like two pocky sticks so it became Pocky Day but it also looks like two single people (??) and became Singles Day as well…and it’s also a nice day to find online shopping deals at the upcoming ShopBack 11.11 Sales.

shopback 11.11 sales

Easy enough to remember too.

So next time you’re shopping consider using ShopBack and using the $$$ rebates for more shopping!

Till next time,
xoxo
Bernie

New Chapter(s)

2016 has been an okay year and somehow it’s passed by so fast I don’t even remember what happened at the start of it and when I think back I realise I started the year still in Japan and now I’m back in Singapore for good (at least for the foreseeable next few years). I can’t remember what I did for new years or Christmas.

Oh it seems I watched Kohaku Uta Gassen, got a pizza then lay on the floor and cried while eating bread. Fitting.

But a lot more has happened than I actually realise:

  • I finished my undergrad thesis (through so many meltdowns and anxiety attacks) and submitted it on 7 Jan.
  • Then two months later I Graduated from University on 18 March.
  • Applied for Grad School and got accepted into NUS

and you know, small other things like the end of a relationship, having to go back into the dating pool then deciding guys are generally jerks and leaving, took a part time job at a relatively small company then quit a while later due to terrible office politics, making new friends, getting closer to existing friends, saying goodbye to a BFF who moved away for work, having to adapt back to SG life…

It’s so surreal because my life was Japan, Japan, Japan for so long that having to come back and now I’m feeling the disconnect from life in Singapore. I did a curating stint on the hellofrmsg twitter for a bit and reading my now SG filled timeline made me think and realise I don’t really know SG outside of my small social circle. I go to r/Singapore and I don’t know how to reply to questions there. I read what fellow Singaporeans are writing and I feel left behind sometimes.

I also feel stuck in ennui.

After quitting that part time job (I submitted notice the day NUS emailed me) it’s just been chilling and taking things easy. I started playing Animal Crossing and L4D2, and recently been playing Crush Crush, an idle dating sim for lack of a game to play to keep me entertained.

I reached 1,000 subscribers on YouTube early this year and then went inactive for six months and counting. I’m at 1,400 now and chances are I’ll get to 1,500 before anything else is posted.

It feels like I’m half-assing it which is a disservice to the viewers.

I have video footage that will probably never go on YouTube because it either contains people I no longer associate with, parts are missing, or they were shot so badly my terrible editing skills probably can’t save it.

But I do enjoy vlogging. I enjoy videos. I’m just not good at them and too concerned with how I present myself.

I just sent back some online shopping I did because the clothes were either too small or too big (even though all tagged the same size) and I love online retailers but not being able to try on clothes physically makes me sad. There are so few options and it’s so difficult to find clothes in the style I like.

You can argue that every person has difficulty shopping because of the large variety of body types and combinations of problem areas but it is still easier to find clothes if you tend to fit the most commonly available sizes that clothing lines tailor to. At either end of the spectrum you lose – too petite, too rotound, too tall, too muscular yada yada yada.

Ice cream and food was my comfort in emotional times this year so now some of my favorite clothing pieces don’t fit and now dressing up becomes a problem of “what clothes do I have left that don’t show my disgusting fats?”.

So I should take this time off before school starts to get my shit back together, right?

Cannot just keep waiting for motivation, need to start forcing myself to do things.

I have been watching vlogs on YouTube to try and get a sense of how to edit my own vlogs. Let’s see if I get it together enough to start the new series I want to start maybe next year.

Hmm.

P.S. Anusthing is possible – my queen of snakes just ssssslayed this year and I am so happy.

Till next time,
xoxo
Bernie

I have weird dreams

I tend to dream rather frequently, and it’s usually quite vivid and while I love it sometimes it also terrifies me and I’ve woken up too scared to go back to sleep. I’ve only ever messaged my friends about these dreams but Sherilyn has been bugging me to keep a Dream Journal and because I’m too lazy to make a new one just for them, I thought I’d just chronicle them here.

Most of them verbatim from how I text my friends about it

30 June 2016:

IN WHICH BERNIE DREAMS SHE IS RICH

Ok so last night I dreamt that I was rich (likely influenced by the reality tv show denise sent about rich Chinese girls and our conversation)

It starts like quite randomly like I can’t remember why but I came back from being away from home for quite a while and I have no idea why. So I’m at like a welcome back party or something? Then I think I’m at a counter or like bar or what when suddenly this guy (who is ripped for the GODS and super handsome af, Asian? possibly mixed?) comes up and puts his arm around me and then I am thinking like vaguely oh is this my bf HAHHAHAHAHA (like is more like oh I have a bf but i vaguely have forgotton who it is)

But ya ok is the bf can. so he welcome me back la, and for some reason when first see him his shirt was pulled up and can see the six pack which weirdly looked a bit too fakely sculpted on HAHAHAHA

Ok then go another place and it was like super atas af yet we had to climb the stairs to get to the apartment on the 30 floor and he offer to carry me and i am like is ok la dun need hehe

Then reach already the door unlocks (some woman who was at party w us? unlocked it) then we go in and it is HUGE and has it’s own concierge and everything is like a hotel inside that floor itself and supposedly is either owned by me or the bf or both of us?? So then we go and play in the fountain in the lobby or what

And there are those water spouts that can shoot things up if they are on top of it. Then i accidentally am on top and it shoots me up into the sky and I am like OMG! and then tell the guy “TAKE PHOTO!!! TAKE PHOTO!!!” Dream Bernie still desperate for that instagram shot wtf

So he take photo and it turns out to be like those jump shot in mid air kind except I posing with water and stuff

Then it changes to me being SINGLE AND KICKED OUT (? or parallel universe?) so I have to bunk with 2 couples (all my friends) then suddenly like our relatives brings a kid for us to take care of in the cabin or what.

Then the kid is scared the place is haunted and we see the panels on the doors start shaking and gonna come of and hands sticking through the doors and the boy screamssss but turns out is his relatives hiding behind the barsto pretend to scare him

Then I wake up…..

24 May 2015:

IN WHICH BERNIE IS TERRIFIED AND CHASED BY A SERIAL KILLER (+DETECTIVE! MATSUJUN)

(Verbatim from my Facebook post) Woke up from a nightmare all shaken. Here goes:

Ok so there is this psycho serial killer on the loose and the first part of my dream I witness her getting away from the police because she plastic surgery and then she very brutally killed her hostages and I witnessed it. Like she cut open the stomach and sliced the neck open and all the blood flow out. Then second part of the dream I was escaping home but still scared so had people accompany me back to the house and then turns out the police were there and we all had to stand around with hands up as they rounded up and caught some criminals who where the gang mates of that psycho killer. Then after they catch le The policeman said don’t worry we catch all of them liao… Well all except the leader psycho lady then I got DAMN SCARED. Then I noticed a lady in a stewardess outfit walk into the room and I noticed her FACE that she is the psycho lady and I knew she was going to kill all of us so I panic and tell the police who said I am talking rubbish so I run out and tell the other policeman but he take a syringe and inject sedatives into my shoulder so all I can do is CRAWL away and I see people screaming and panicking and I’m like OHNO I AM GOING TO DIE!!! Then someone drags my body away on the floor and I am shouting “HELP ME” and crying then the person drag me to a corner and I am hiding and panicking (this is where I wake up)

Ok but the best part was that one of the detectives was MatsuJun!! And he was talking in English that was very weird so I couldn’t help sniggering. Then he had this very ornate jacket that had all the medals and badges from successful cases. So I went to talk to him. I addressed him by a name he wasn’t too fond of so I then said “Yappari MatsuJun (de yonda) hou ga ii ka na” (I guess calling you MatsuJun is better!) and then he started talking to me. Which was when the Bad Thing happened……

5 November 2014:

IN WHICH BERNIE WAKES UP IN A PARALLEL UNIVERSE WITH A DEAD BODY?

I wake up in my dream in the exact same apartment that I lived in in Nishinomiya except I know it is my room, but it isn’t the same room. It’s a lot darker and it feels like my skin is crawling and I’m generally really scared and it doesn’t help the curtains are drawn and there is this extremely ominous atmosphere. I reach for my phone on instinct and it’s MY PHONE and I see my face staring back at me but it’s not me. It’s another version of me that somehow I’ve woken up into this reality of and the room just feels so cold and I’m so scared.

And then I remember feeling like something is SO VERY WRONG and it terrifies me and it feels like I shouldn’t be there and I remember kind of just shaking and then realising there was something on the ground. It was either a body or blood but it was a big vague blur then and now

I FOUND MY FB CHAT LOG SO I WILL JUST DUMP IT HERE:

I just had the worst nightmare
It freaked me out so bad
So like I was sleeping then suddenly there were like these weird noises like you know the type of machine noise like sounds or whatever like the static etx
Then like I couldn’t move
Like my whole body was paralysed and felt like got pins and needles all over
Then the sounds kept getting louder in my head and freaking me out
Then finally I could move my hands
Then I was desperately panicking and trying to wake up. Like I would see this ugly scary face thing forming in my mind and to push it away I focus v hard on friends faces
Then I finally wake up. It’s in the same room but the furniture is different and I have a lot more plushies. Like giant Pokemon plushies that cover the window/ keep the light out like they were all pushed against the wall by some psychic force
So then I’m like wait what is this this is not my room etx I don’t have these plushies
Then I’m freaking out and want to call someone
So I reach for my phone
THE CONTENTS IN THE PHONE ARE DIFFERENT
like it’s pictures of me but different pictures I don’t remember ever taking
And different places
I’m freaking out like mad and can’t swipe properly
Then I find the contacts/phone and start calling
Then there is more light in the room and I can see what is going on
THERE ARE BROWNISH MUDDY LOOKING STAINS ON THE FLOOR
I am fuckinh freaking out like mad
Then I turn to look toward the bathroom
And I panic
And I’m so freaked out
THEN I WAKW UP DOR REAL
And like I really very very shaken now
Like it felt so real wtf

like I was so scared
To reach for my phone
Like when I opened my eyes for real I was damn scared it would be that room
Like that reality
I looked toward (the toilet)
CAUSE I SUSPECTED AOMEYHING BAD
Like I killed someone
OMG

Friend: OMG i was thinking maybe alternate bernie got killed

Thoughts on ‘The Real Reason Why Women Drink’

Today a link popped up on my Facebook timeline and I went to give it a read and now I am just quietly sitting at my desk at work not knowing how to feel. It is a mix of emotions I cannot quite place in words as if my vocabulary is failing me, and these words somehow hurt like a slow numbing pain and leaves melancholy in its wake.

You should read it too:

Giving up alcohol opened my eyes to the infuriating truth about why women drink” by Kristi Coulter

It leaves me feeling hollow and sad and also leaves ripples of realisation because I start to think about my own life; reevaluating my actions and trying to reassess the meaning behind why I did them. For all the glasses, cans and bottles of alcohol I’ve reached for in the past and will probably continue to crave for.

“But knives and booze, yoga and booze, 13 mile runs and booze? What’s next to be liquored up: CPR training? Puppy ballet class? (Not really a thing, but someone should get on it.) Is there nothing so inherently absorbing or high-stakes or pleasurable that we won’t try to alter our natural response to it?

 

Maybe women are so busy faking it — to be more like a man at work, more like a porn star in bed, more like 30 at 50 — that we don’t trust our natural responses anymore. Maybe all that wine is an Instagram filter for our own lives, so we don’t see how sallow and cracked they’ve become.”

How many times have I thought Damn I need a drink! in hopes of ignoring the root of the problem but instead using getting drunk as a means to forget and escape from it? As if plying ourselves with alcohol takes away from the realities of life where we are mistreated at work, feel that we are deserving of less (be it due to gender or age or experience) or any bad situation, when instead all it does it throw on a filter that makes it seem less bad than it really is. Throwing on a filter that masks the injustices, thinking that ignoring it is better in the long run, thinking that using booze can make us happy, even temporarily so that we can somehow feel better about ourselves?

The magazines telling me strong is the new sexy and smart is the new beautiful, as though strong and smart are just paths to hot. The Facebook memes: muscles are beautiful. No, wait: fat is beautiful. No, wait: thin is beautiful, too, as long as you don’t work for it. No, wait: All women are beautiful! As though we are toddlers who must be given exactly equal shares of princess dust, or we’ll lose our shit.

 

And then I start to get angry at women, too. Not for being born wrong, or for failing to dismantle a thousand years of patriarchy on my personal timetable. But for being so easily mollified by a bottle. For thinking that the right to get as trashed as a man means anything but the right to be as useless.

And it just makes me think of all the times when I have been told to accept I cannot do something because I am a woman, being told I to accept that something happened because of my gender. In Japan, I was told I have to accept that men will treat me a certain way because of how I act. That I cannot judge them for how they behave, cannot criticize them because it is a product, a consequence, of who I am.

I was told off for calling an ex-boyfriend too clingy by an older Japanese man. “He is just being protective of you.”, and later he went on to say that “You are a strong woman so only weaker men will like you.” and I felt so offended but I could say nothing – he was a student at where I was working, the customer is always right, so all I could do was try and change the topic of conversation. (Supposedly, it is no different here in Singapore. Me being fat, opinionated and non-submissive throws me down into the dredges of the dating pool’s unwanted.)

Another time – I was told off for my appearance by an elderly Japanese man. It was again, at work, at an international party type thing with free flow booze and light snacks. I had dyed hair then and was wearing coloured contacts and had been feeling happy and pretty until he came over and decided to stomp all over and criticize my appearance. He sneered at my coloured hair tips, calling them terrible. “Your hair looks so dry and unhealthy.” before giving his look of approval at the ‘typically Asian looking’ staff next to me, praising her non-dyed black hair, her brown eyes, and asked why I was hiding my real eye colour, scoffing before he proclaimed that “Natural is best.”

Again, there was nothing I could say. So I took another swig of the can of chu-hai to try and remind myself that what he said didn’t matter. Like how I always had a can open, or a bottle ready for that day when I felt upset and needed something to nullify the pain.

I wish I could present my thoughts to this article in a better way, but I can’t because it hasn’t fully sunk in yet. There is so much more to mull over.

I will need to let the words sink in, read them another few times, and then, perhaps, I will have something better articulated that I can write about it.

So till next time,
xoxo
Bernie

Playing Pokemon Go in Singapore!

IT FINALLY RELEASED IN SINGAPORE! Somehow, even though I am usually terrible at waking up in the mornings, I woke up at 9am on 6 August – the exact time Pokemon Go released in Singapore. After frantically downloading and logging into my account, my first Pokemon (after the starter which I’d set up almost a month ago) was an Exeggcute, which was caught…in my toilet.

I remember that first morning as I scrambled to change and get into gear and rushed out of the house to explore. It’s here, it’s here! And as I wandered around the neighbourhood finding Pokestops, I can never forget that first time I ran into another trainer at a Pokestop and our eyes met; in that moment we shared a look of acknowledgment, we both knew we were playing Pokemon Go.

Fast forward to 10 days later and Singapore has been completely taken over by PoGo Fever. In 3 days I had made it to level 16, but have since slowed down the pace and somewhat plateaued at level 21. Friends in Japan and the US were a bit baffled by how fast I, and other Singaporean players, had progressed. Aided by how Singapore is a small city state and there are only a few truly rural places, most areas are peppered with PokeStops and Gyms and Pokemon spawn at a decent frequency that allow players to surge through and level up quickly.

beanmylife Pokemon Go Status

Current Pokemon Go status – my nicknames are terribly unoriginal

Not to mention how every single business has seemed to jump onto the bandwagon and capitalize on this craze by providing unlimited lures at malls and restaurants, or some PoGo tie in promotion. ‘Show a screenshot of a Pokemon you’ve caught in our mall/restaurant/cafe (with AR on) and get a free voucher!’ is now the norm and we’ve seen a PoGo Dating Event (Dating Go!) and even a supposed ‘Pokemon Master’ job up for grabs. Ahh, capitalism.

Pokemon Go Singapore Lures Pokestops

Malls dropping ‘unlimited lures’ to attract players: Vivocity (left), Orchard area (right)

Plus just knowing how behind we are due to the late release of PoGo in Southeast Asia only adds more fuel to the flames and drives up our levels of kiasuism to the peak. Kiasu, literally “afraid to lose”, is one of the characteristics that defines Singaporeans – we hate losing, and therefore become competitive to catch up with and surpass others. In other words we have no chill and just want to be the very best like no one ever was.

But the best part of the game is how it’s become a form of bonding activity – for the young and old, for all walks of life and in the crazy hordes of people rushing for that rare Pokemon spawn, you somehow feel like ‘yes, I’m a part of something bigger’. It’s probably just how everyone just wants to be a part of the hype, though for a lot of us it’s also about reliving our childhood dreams.

Pokemon Go Singapore with Starmie

“Am I standing next to it?” Even my mom now knows about Pokemon Go and gamely wanted to pose next to this Starmie I found.

My colleagues play PoGo with their children, I see aunties and uncles in the neighbourhood playing, and now going Pokemon Hunting has become a legitimate activity among friends. Last Saturday I spent half a day at Vivocity catching Magikarps in order to reach the 400 candies needed to evolve it into Gyarados.

Pokemon Go Gyarados Evolved

We both evolved our Magikarps after farming candies! We named them “Joseph” and “Schooling” respectively after Singapore’s Olympic Gold Medalist Joseph Schooling 😀

And just our luck, a rare Vaporeon spawn took place that night and sent us scrambling onto the rooftop terrace to try and catch it. A horde of people had gathered in that one spot where it spawned and we rushed over to try our luck before the Pokemon disappeared off the map, and I almost tripped over a plank in my hurry to get there. Oops.

“Eh eh you got it? Vaporeon! Vaporeon!” came the cries from the crowd and we excitedly searched our screens for it, tapping in a frenzy at the spot where it spawned and felt the adrenaline and anxiety as we threw Pokeball after Pokeball, Berry after Berry to catch it. Nearby, a solemn cry of “NOOOOOO” erupted from a group of guys and we felt their sorrow as we imagined how painful it was to have the Pokemon run away.

After the victory of catching our own Vaporeon, suddenly the flurry erupted again as cries of “Dragonair!” echoed in the crowd and the frenzy intensified. That day was my first sighting of the elusive dragon Pokemon and I was beyond ecstatic to have added a Dragonair and quite a few Dratini to my collection.

Pokemon Go Singapore Vivocity

We ended the day watching the sunset in the distance and just basking in the atmosphere – around us phones were alight and trainers were busy catching as many as they could or just showing friends what they got, and there was this sense of satisfaction and joy. The whole day I had been buzzing and running on adrenaline, excited beyond means at every spawn, every rare Pokemon caught and every moment spent pretending to be a trainer just like in the games I’d played as a child.

While there are people who have been dismissive of the game and who have been closed minded twats who make remarks such as “so old already still playing” and someone who told me I need to “grow up”, the general response to the game has been rather warm and welcoming.

Pokemon Go has been such great fun – creating community, a way for people to bond and to get out and explore parts of Singapore we would have never thought of or wanted to. And for me, it’s also an excuse to get out there and walk lots more. I went out in the afternoon to take a walk around the neighbourhood after hearing a tip off about a rare Pokemon spawn. While the tip off had led to nothing but a lie, when I returned, my mom asked me “So how many did you catch?”. I never thought I’d experience a day when my mom would even know about one of my interests, let alone my love for Pokemon.

In the words of the show’s catchy opening theme, Gotta catch em all! by travelling across the land, searching far and wide indeed.

Now excuse me if the posts start getting even more infrequent, I’m probably out hunting to fill my Pokedex.

Till next time,
xoxo
Bernie

Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita Review

Let me just say I am a makeup noob. My makeup is terrible. My eyebrows are uneven, I can’t seem to replicate eyeshadow on the other lid properly and I only started wearing lipsticks a month or so ago. I do like makeup but it’s going to take some practice to get good. So I’ve been using the extra time I have to get ready for work to experiment a bit more with everyday makeup looks that go a bit beyond just foundation and drawing my brows.

Recently I’ve jumped on the trend of matte lipsticks and decided I needed more.

I feel in love at Sephora with the Kat Von D liquid lipsticks. I had gone in with the intention of getting some matte shades from Nyx that wouldn’t destroy my wallet, and I was hoping to find a perfect purple lipstick as well. But after doing swatches of both the Kat Von D and Nyx liquid lipsticks, I decided that I couldn’t find a Nyx shade I didn’t already have something very similar to, or they weren’t exactly what I was looking for.

I picked up the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in the shades Lolita and Susperia, the latter of which I am excited to try out soon!

The look:

beanmylife kat von d liquid lipstick lolita

The iPhone camera isn’t great at picking up eyeshadow unless it’s reaaaally dark so you can’t see it well, and yes, I have a zit on my chin and it’s terrible too but the lipstick was the real MVP today I was so excited and happy to try it out. I decided to wear what makes me happy – which includes wearing whatever makeup makes me happy.

Eyes:
Makeup Revolution’s Fortune Favours The Brave Palette (Creme, Buffer, Caffeine Fix, Sunset Hour and Golden Coins)
Brown Eyeliner by dodo

Brows:
Eyebrow pencil from DAISO

Face:
Missha Magic Cushion Moisture
Kate Mineral Loose Foundation
Makeup Revolution Ultra Contour Palette (for Bronzer)

Lips:
Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita

I generally don’t wear blush nor mascara because my skin is pretty red, and mascara just gets in the way when I wear spectacles which is almost all the time.

BUT LET ME TALK ABOUT THAT LIPSTICK.

Ease of Application & Comfort, 8/10:
It’s a wand applicator and glides so smoothly on my lips it’s amazing. A little goes quite a long way! It dries and goes matte pretty fast – you can kind of feel it drying initially but after that you barely feel it on at all.

Staying Power, 7/10:
It does have pretty great staying power – I ate Duck Rice for lunch, and that was greasy and fatty but only the inner parts of the lip were gone after lunch so I only needed to reapply that. After which, it lasted all the way till dinner before it disappeared as I devoured my food. It’s not really a lip stain so it doesn’t stain my lips (unlike the Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lipcolor in Passion which stains my lips the entire day and then some) plus it’s more on the nude shades spectrum so I wouldn’t expect it to do that.

Staining, 7/10:
It barely stained my straws or cups. Barely, but there were specks. You know how like paint when it dries sometimes a few specks flick/flake off? It was something like that so there were some small stain spots on the white styrofoam cup I used but nothing like actually full on lip stains so that was great.

Price, 6/10:
It retails at SGD$31 at Sephora, kind of ouch, but not too big of a hole to burn in the wallet. But I didn’t mind parting with the $$, especially for Susperia which I hope I’ll have a look for soon. In comparison, Nyx costs $13 and Revlon is $20. You can probably get Colorpop and others online for cheaper but there’s always more satisfaction walking into a store and swatching it on your hand…

Overall, I really like it!! It’s not too light, and not too dark yet still stands out nicely when I decide I want a more neutral/natural brown look. I was on cloud 9 after my purchase and couldn’t stop gushing over it with Tea. Ahh, makeup and retail therapy.

I know it’s kind of random to suddenly see a makeup post on this blog but it’s such a mish mash of everything and I just had to talk about the lipstick. My life has pretty much been work, sleep, work…and now it’s also filled with POKEMON GO. YES, IT FINALLY REACHED SINGAPORE’S SHORES ON SATURDAY AND I HAVE BEEN HOOKED. I’m Level 16 and in Team Mystic! There will probably be a post on that soon, as well as on Singapore’s 51st Birthday!

Till next time,
xoxo
Bernie

Control (and an ode to a friend)

Last night I was hit by a wave of melancholy that lasted a good 15? 20 minutes? and I lay down as I stared at the blank ceiling and felt confusion as the hot tears flowed and flowed and flowed. I questioned why why why was this happening and wiped them away as another few slid down my cheeks. I watched food videos, scrolled Facebook, twitter, but it made me increasingly empty and the sadness echoed ever more so.

I googled a shouting into the void phrase that popped up in my head which made me feel even more terrible and I just let the feeling wash over me as I sunk deeper into the melancholy.

why why why

Somehow I managed to sleep – a nothingness and when I awoke the lethargy crashed all over me again and the sluggish day began. “Good morning :)” read a text and a faint smile. Maybe today will get better. I still wanted to know why why why. I felt drained, physically and emotionally.

Friday saw me down with a 38.3 degree fever and my first “sleep paralysis” and hypochondriac induced panic. I had been flung into a hysteria upon experiencing something like sleep paralysis when I tried to sleep after taking my cold/flu meds. My limbs felt numb, like I was losing feeling in them and if I feel asleep I feared losing any control over them at all. It felt like my consciousness was being concentrated only in my torso and I had to keep physically moving my limbs to remind myself they were still there and I flew into the panic and started crying and crying and crying Will I Be Okay I Need To Be Okay I Will Be Okay and crying and crying. I had to sit up and force myself to fight the drowsiness for fears sleep would rob me of something.

I calmed down eventually until yesterday’s sadness attack possibly triggered by a vast variety of emotionally draining issues, on top of how being ill was draining me physically. I barely ate and even when my body was sending me pangs of hunger I couldn’t bring myself to eat, I was getting used to the feeling of being hungry and in the back of my mind I was hearing this small voice echo how I could get used to this constant hunger.

On another note:

farewell

Unofficially saying goodbye yesterday could have been a trigger. Could have. Maybe that was it. Sherilyn is JET-ting off at the end of this week and it is saying bye bye to a Makan-kaki, to a best friend, to someone who understands me and someone who knows the best things to say.

We ate at Dian Xiao Er, shared the roast duck, kai lan and hot plate tofu. Laughed ourselves silly with conversation and ended up sitting at an open rooftop area by a library. Just lepaking, as we’d say in Singlish, and I didn’t know when I’d last felt such unbridled joy.

“Isn’t it nice that you can just lepak at a place like this? I’m going to miss this in Japan.”

It was fun catching up, with people who know you, who you can be yourself around.

“Are you sure you want to post that on snapchat with that terrible laughter?” and Sherilyn chimed in with a “OH I have an audio recording of an even worse laugh!” and I vaguely remembered when it was recorded.

Sherilyn and I became friends due to our mutual love of Japan, via a Facebook message she’d sent me seemingly out of the blue. She saw a comment a mutual friend posted either about me or on a post I made and said hi. We began chatting and met at the Fall Out Boy meet and greet, which turned out to be way more eventful than we could have imagined.

Two? years later and it’s hard to imagine that there was a life, a time, before I knew Sherilyn with how seamlessly she’s been integrated into the routine of my life. Isn’t it also crazy how now I’m back in SG from Japan now she’s off on her own journey in Japan, the land that connected the two of us?

It’s going to be a whirlwind of a journey and it’s going to be great, and you’re gonna be great.

I’ll miss you Sherilyn!!

All my love, live long and prosper.

Bernie