Monday, November 2, 2009

"Don't Play Play" on Singapore Halloween

This past weekend was Halloween in Singapore. Do Singaporeans celebrate Halloween, you ask? You bet.

Well, not most. But enough to make this story interesting.

Leading up to the holiday, I had little idea of what to be for my costume. I had already heard some good costume ideas that my expat friends were being (including a papier-mache fortune cookie - it was pretty intense), so I knew I needed something that could stand up to the other ideas. In the past, I'm not one to take Halloween lightly - I like to put in the effort to get a good costume, even if it costs a few extra hours of searching for the right items.

Anyway, my friend Ana and I came upon an amazing idea for our costumes 48 hours before Halloween. So all around Singapore on the MRT (Mass Rapid Transit = subway trains) are public service announcements made by two of Singapore's most famous sitcom characters. The characters can only be described as follows: loud, obnoxious, corny, hilarious. The guy is called Phua Chu Kang or PCK for short, and the wife's name is Rosie. They come from a Singaporean sitcome called PCK, in which the main character basically runs around Singapore getting into all sorts of trouble because of his use of Singlish. In particular, his main catch-phrase is "Don't play play!"; I still have yet to find someone who actually knows what this means.

So on every single MRT door, you see posters that look as follows:

Notice 2 things about this picture. 1 - his enormous black mole on his right cheek. 2 - his hideously long right pinky nail. And there's one more thing that you can't see in this photo, but his trademark outfit includes giant yellow rain boots, which you can see in the following video: (this video is played nonstop on the MRT as well - it is a rap song by PCK enticing you to be courteous, as he dances around in his yellow rain boots. It is well worth watching.)

I found every detail to this costume. I owned a white dress shirt and black pants, I bought a perfect black wig, got black face paint for the mole, found glow-in-the-dark fake finger nails, got multiple gold chains for the necklace and bracelets, and found an amazing pair of bright yellow rain boots. With costume complete, I set out for the pre-game party before we moved on to club Zouk. See below for a comparison between the MRT pictures and the picture of Ana and I:

So safe to say, our costumes were pretty amazing. Little did we know that we would soon be celebrities though.

Upon arriving at club Zouk, a club we chose because they gave free entrance to anyone in costume, we immediately became swarmed with Singaporeans. Everywhere I walked, anytime I made eye-contact with anybody, all I heard was "PCK! PCK!" Every single local, whether guy or girl, loved the fact that an Ang Mor (derogatory term for a white person in Singapore) had dressed up as their favorite pop culture star. Over the course of 2 hours at the club, and this is no exaggeration, I had to stop for no less than 50 photo-shoots with my favorite fans. Every single group of teenage girls stopped me to take personal pictures with them, and of course I was more than happy to oblige. I wouldn't be surprised if my images are floating somewhere in the Singaporean tabloids right now, because I feel like somewhat of a celebrity after that night. Needless to say, with the massive ego-boost of a succesful Halloween costume, I had a fantastic night. The only downside is that my camera has been broken for the past week and so I don't have any footage from the club, but I'm willing to bet that you'll be able to see my pictures floating around someone's myspace or facebook or even US weekly sometime in the next couple of days. Just keep your eyes open for a white PCK surrounded by gaggling teenage girls.

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