my thoughts and some scenarios (regarding Xiaxue’s post)

i’m supposed to do revision and plan for my trips today, but well, i came across a Facebook post on my newsfeed, which was a reply to Xiaxue’s latest (I think) video about how she is not a feminist. to be accurate, she is not a third-wave/modern feminist.

Before you read this i think i’ll be good to watch XX’s video which is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVspgkYbJl4&feature=youtu.be&a ; lol indirectly promoting her video but maybe that’s one of her goals, ha ha

to make things clear, i would like to start off with a disclaimer: i personally feel i have not read enough to be sure of my arguments and i do not claim to represent every single woman, just myself, on whatever i am about to say. i read the reply, which was pretty long, so i acknowledge that i did not internalise and might have missed certain things that the reply said. however, the reply made me curious about xiaxue’s video so i went to watch it. i kind of get what xiaxue is trying to say, and also get what the reply to her video was saying, so let me just get out my thoughts here, because i believe that writing it out makes my head clearer and also, if this at least makes ONE reader (idk if anyone reads this tbh LOL) think, then it’ll have achieved one of my goals which is to have sparked some thoughts or discussion internally or not.

#1 Definition of Feminism

Honestly, my definition of feminism kept on changing. Initially, i thought it was just about fighting women’s rights to be equal as men’s. Then someone told me it was not just women’s rights but humans rights- so why call it feminism instead of humanism then? No idea, but probably because feminism has such a strong impact and started off with caring about women’s rights instead of men’s; similar to how a word has evolved over the years but perhaps there is less impact if we suddenly start using ‘humanism’ (ok i just googled that word, it has a different meaning from what i thought it would be oops).

So what is THE definition of feminism? I think this is an issue because everyone seems to define feminism differently which is why some people identify as a feminist, and why some people do not. Feminism can include fighting for women’s rights such as abortion and gay rights, but others may think abortion and gay rights is a whole other issue that should not be inside the feminism category so isn’t this already a huge problem? What if I am a person who fights for abortion but oppose gay rights, or vice versa? Am I half a feminist then?

So here we have many different definitions of feminism, and it is hard to say who is right or wrong so it’s kind of confusing. How do we solve this issue? Perhaps coming up with a solid definition of what rights feminism consists of, and like drilling this into everyone’s heads? So that everyone has the same definition of feminism? Even if you can get everyone in the world to agree (which I think it is frankly super hard to do) on the definition, the definition of feminism has changed over the years. So I guess you could define feminism at a point of time but it would not survive the passage of time.

So how? No idea. I think feminism is really a broad term to use, so perhaps it would be better to identify individual issues instead of lumping all of them together because what if one of the issues are no longer relevant in the definition of feminism… do we awkwardly remove it? Many often say “I am a feminist!” or “I am not a feminist!” and to be honest, I have NO idea what they mean. I mean, I THINK i get it but I could be misinterpreting their words. I could ask them, what do you mean by that? “Supporting women’s rights/equal rights”- but what rights do they support in general? Then if you really wanna understand what their intentions were you’d have to ask a series of questions. So I would prefer if people just said specifically the issue that they are concerned with. But what if they support a lot of things? Are they suppose to say all 32 issues? Isn’t “I’m a feminist” easier to say? Well yeah but apparently some people have a hard time deciphering what issues. So i still don’t know if which is better- but I think if you’d were fighting for rights, it is easier to address one issue at a time? I might be wrong, but I mean, man, multitasking is kind of hard (for me, at least).

Wow, i thought i’d touch briefly about the definition of feminism but looks like i blabbered too much…

#2 Equal rights comes with equal obligations / responsibilities

I talked about this with some of my friends a while ago (very fortunate to have people to talk about such issues freely) and I will specifically talk about Singapore’s context, from what I know.

Xiaxue mentions a few things in her video:

  • Banquet Waitress experience
    • boys have to carry lots of heavy stuff despite getting same pay at work
    • girls just have to smile and serve some drinks
    • My thoughts: I think this is like a specific work experience because you can give examples of gender inequality in many other jobs that favor either genders; and even in her banquet waitress experience, the girl could have wanted to have experience in logistics instead of serving customers on the frontline so it depends on the individual??
  • Boys and national service
    • horror of serving NS for 2 years
  • Blogging industry
    • still managed to rise to the top despite being a female
  • Dating life
    • she did not have to be the pursuer, she just have to wait there to be pursued by males and often get free stuff/didn’t have to pay
    • most likely be able to get alimony from husband and custody of children if divorced

So basically all her points up there are logical, but i felt that it was quite irrelevant because she’s just saying that she had all these advantages of a female, and that females are forgetting that they have these advantages and should be grateful for it.

 

She is not a feminist because some of the issues such as

  • How do you plan to enforce equality
  • Women have all the legal rights that men have, and more
    • e.g. abortion — women make the decision to abort a baby (and men has zero say)
      • uses analogy that you should not steal if you dont want your hands chopped off to counter an argument claiming that the man should not have sex with the woman if he does not want to have a baby
    • e.g. rape — if a woman rapes a man, it is not considered rape (at least in Singapore)
    • e.g. punishment – women cannot be caned unlike men

 

#3 Compensation vs Oppression 

  • Basically, women need these ‘advantageous’ laws to override and compensate for the oppression we feel
    • analogy: women earn less than men, so its fair for men to pay for women (for like dinner or anything)
    • e.g. gender wage myth has been debunked by economists
      • a lot of reasons why women earn lesser than men; one of them is that
        • women choose to focus on their family than their career
          • agree, more women than men choose to focus on their family than their career; therefore statistics need to show people who chose career over family and see if there is any gender gap? dk if it’s been done so could still be a myth
          • men should be penalized for what women choose to do (seems unfair, as she says- which i agree with)
  • In a utopian feminist world, where women earn same as men, XX does not want to go dutch and pay for her own dates ; i guess this is where i differ? wouldn’t mind paying for my own dates if it was a utopian equal world but i guess if you’ve always not been paying for dates then like why would you wanna pay for dates suddenly amirite
  • She acknowledges some things are harder for females, but believes that the meritocracy system is the fairest system so far and will help females overcome it
    • XX states having same pay as your male co-worker is not a right (i agree, this is called affirmative action and i think many people who call themselves feminists are advocating for this- short term benefits but long term it will not work out in my opinion)

 

At this point she starts talking about some ‘dumbest feminist quotes’; not going to rly say anything because i think these are kind of more like opinions but i’ll just summarise it

  • most guys will have sex with women regardless of what they wear but most women will not have sex with men who crossdress [her opinion, but i understand where she is coming from- a stereotypical woman would, based on a societal’s perspective, would NOT]
  • a quote about how feminism is raping someone even without their hands- i think its like a metaphor for how the patriarchy is raping females who do not subscribe to it?xx chooses to take it literally and says that because the girl is feeling oppressed by a man he should go to jail for life — i think she’s doing this for the views or smth cause like the quote clearly states ‘men’? (why am i even like spending time trying to mindread what XX is actually thinking omg)
  • some point about teaching women to not walk down a dark alley — XX links it to people claiming that they can do whatever the f they like to do, and to say that is to promote rape culture where you blame the victim instead of the rapist.
    • my thoughts: ok logically speaking i think there has been lots of arguments about this and one of them is the thief thing; you can teach a thief to not steal but ya you can also teach a person to protect their belongings; so i honestly don’t get this. i think the rape issue is different from the thief issue is because you don’t see anyone blaming the victim for getting their items stolen (ok maybe some people would say they are stupid for walking down a dark alley); you see (more) people blaming the victim for getting raped so i guess that’s the difference? idk isn’t it like quite simple to understand- XX is right but irrelevant in this point and actually tbh, many other points too
  • choosing between family vs career
    • xx says women have to choose between family / career
      • i understand her point, and i agree- i do think that because women are still seen as both the primary caretaker of children in a dual-income family which is an issue- the solution is probably more of a marriage issue; the husband/partner needs to understand and like work out an agreement between the both of them and BOTH of them need to compromise lol so again she is right but quite irrelevant (but some may think this is a relevant issue to feminism, thoughts? if educating men to take on a more equal role with regards to taking care of children is considered part of feminism then i might agree it is relevant to feminism)
  • the quote about not wanting to shave and like being whoever they r etc etc
    • i understand her point and ya i understand why she said ‘that’s how the system works’; personally, i think its just quite suay that women have a much higher beauty standard and pressure to adhere to and i’d love to change this standard to something more manageable, so perhaps people talking about such examples may get people to realise this disparity in standards and hopefully try to be more equal and forgiving and less discriminatory when women doesn’t live up to the standards?? i know many men have to shave their beards so they got their own issues to deal with to, but ya it is the current system and like i’d rly love to change it but again, don’t really know how
  • some video about a woman doing yoga with her period and that men should not be disgusted; err in my opinion it is quite disgusting and like, this issue is a little on the gray area because what is considered disgusting? exposed nipples of women when they are breastfeeding? menstrual blood? men’s penises when they are erected? like ya so it is a gray area– if it is disgusting and makes people uncomfortable should you like not show it? well, i wanted to say yes you should hide it, but then i thought about other issues such as two guys kissing- if it is disgusting and uncomfortable to people, should they not show it in public? are you oppressing them? tbh i don’t know what’s the right solution for it but i guess you gotta look at the intention and the situation of the ‘disgusting stimuli’ — if a woman had no time to cover her nipples then i’d think people should not blame her; if she feels proud of her nipples but she lives in a society that hates nipples… what the fk should she do then? should she conform to society and be the greater person and cover her nipples for society’s sake or should she be herself and fight for her nipples’ freedom of expression????? i hate to say it but i think many stuff in the past such as women’s rights, racial equality and so on has started with oppression initially but i think it didn’t gain momentum until a decent amount of people spoke up so in this case…. i guess i’d go with the majority? people did not fight for rights at least until they were aware they were oppressed, so if more people started feeling oppressed then i guess societal rules and laws would be modified and adapted to update societal’s feelings.
  • some other quotes i chose to not include cause i felt it was super irrelevant

 

actually, to sum it up, i think XX was just saying that

  • she’s attacking people who are using ‘feminism’ very vaguely and perhaps abusing the term [she refers to them as third wave feminism but i think even within third wave feminism there’s a lot of different claims to its definition]
  • she does not want equal rights because she does not want the equal obligations that comes along with it (e.g. paying for her own meal, going for NS, able to cry and express emotions without being laughed at)
  • her experiences in this system (i.e. patriarchy) has proved to be fruitful and beneficial overall so she does not want to change the system

logically, and if i was thinking for just myself, and if i was XX, i wouldn’t want to change the system and fight for equal rights as well. i mean, if everything has been working out for me why do i need to bother changing the system? i don’t feel oppressed or anything, i don’t think there is anything inherently wrong enough to want to stand up to it actively. i agree, some females benefited from this system, and some adapted to it, some could not, and some simply didn’t have the option to choose.

so, should we change the system or not? probably 50 years ago, whites were more superior to blacks in a more obvious way- and if that system were still in place, whites would undoubtedly be still on top of the hierarchy and be thriving. should it have been demolished? if i were a selfish white person who thought only for myself, then i would maintain the status quo.

cliche i know but just wanted to end off with this: it is hard to change the system, but it is impossible to change it if you don’t even try.

 

honestly, wtf am i doing writing a post like this when i have a million other things i should be doing..

 

 

 

 

Manchester (25/1/17-28/1/17)

So i’m gonna write about my FIRST trip outside of Sweden!! Writing it because well when people ask me what I did I honestly could not remember other than ‘Oh we went to this place. Eat. Slack around. Eat. Come back’ when there are actually lots of other mini things that my brain just conveniently forgot! Apparently many of these things aren’t “memorable” enough; but I say they are worth writing down because ten years down the road, I am gonna read this and think, ‘THANK GOD I WROTE IT’. Or I could be like ‘Why did I write everything down…’

So this trip was kind of a last minute thing. My sister was called up to do a Singapore-Manchester-Houston flight, and told me about it. I was suppose to meet her during March instead, but I was like heck why not just meet her now since I wanna escape the cold for a little while (but as it turns out…well, read on).

So I booked the flight tickets a few days before I went off. Which was expensive for a student, but reasonably priced. Used skyscanner, the individual websites of SAS, Norwegian,etc, and found that SASYouth offered a balanced option- cheap and convenient. Just 1 hour bus ride from Flogsta (including one bus change). Decided to fly back from London (Gatwick) instead as the tix back from Manchester to Arlanda was 85+ euros itself already, while the one from London was 50 euros. Even though I kind of planned for overseas trips before, this was my first time doing everything by myself and honestly, it felt quite overwhelming at first. Checking and comparing prices, timings, seeing if my schedule fits- and the fact that I am flying from London meant that I had 3 days alone- meaning I had to find things to do that can be done alone. In London. #lonedon. I also conveniently forgot that I would be alone during CNY and miss some CNY dinner back in Flogsta 😦 but all is well as I think my trip was worth it in the end!

Enough of my blabbering- I decided to go find my sister as well because… freeee accommodation heh heh. For the first 3 days in Manchester, I stayed in the Midland Hotel. It is a pretty high class hotel. What did I dooooo?

DAY 1

As it was my first time going on a plane alone, I decided to be super kiasu. By that, I mean waking up at 3.30am when my flight is at 7.25am. Leaving Flogsta at 4am, taking bus 5 to Uppsala Centrum and then bus 801 to Arlanda airport. Total cost was 66 SEK. I reached the airport around 5.15am? As I already checked in online via SAS i didn’t need to print a boarding pass, but did anyway at the SAS booth because I never boarded a plane using mobile boarding passes before lol and also because its free. The customs queue was short, and waited at the gate since 6am- so I was early by ~1.5 hour. Wow. Earliest I’ve ever been. Its okay. Also, the reason why I am so kiasu is because I missed a flight quite recently- back in late December 2015, from Taiwan to Singapore. The shock I felt when I saw the gates closed, the staff denying us entry to the plane, and finally, the plane flying away from us, literally, right in front of our eyes… LOL. But anyway, that’s another story. Omg, I haven’t even reached Manchester yet I am already talking so much irrelevant stuff. Anyways…

16423139_10154426223765819_215053151701706314_o
Time to charge my phone i guess.
16473849_10154426223770819_7794690829960050433_n
Yay free tea from SAS!
16487259_10154426223755819_7909339654771151783_o
Chose the window seat, yay!
16300411_10154426223775819_3491764319241108113_o
Train to Manchester Piccadilly!

I know when I look back i’ll be like ‘this is so lame’ but then again it’s my first time (ALONE)!!! Taking a bus, plane and then train to another foreign land… it is quite magical by itself heh. I don’t think I have pretty pictures, but I know these pictures will be second chances to walk down the memory lane again, and that is what I cherish the most.

16427287_10154426223980819_2758094518903118031_n
Found this really nice because all I’ve seen for the past month were frozen waters.
16387447_10154426224325819_321367233134194536_n
Can’t remember whats this but its a building nearby a world war II memorial.

16472967_10154426224340819_7261857933136213222_n1Basically walked around the main town area- i.e. manchester hall, manchester art gallery, john rylanda library [interior is quite cool but the main part was closed for filming :(].

16403064_10154426241780819_7021411327675255816_o
jus tryna admire some art yea
16300022_10154426252325819_1689329428418112765_o
some room in john rylands library
16387899_10154426239945819_4468564228491199318_n
its me again LOL appreciating art pt.2

also.. saw the iconic red telephone booth that i thought was only located in London and decided to run to it like a tourist and take a photo with it. but well, my conclusion is that its nice to see but aint nice to smell.

 

img_2911
The smell of pee/poo mixture turned my smile upside down

 

Had some thai food afterwards @ Try Thai Bar and Restaurant. The food is a little pricey for a student, but it is generally not bad. AND the main purpose of it is to satisfy our cravings! Wew. I miss Asian food so so so much. Our food is featured in a little video I made, which can be found at the end of this post!

 

My sis heard that the manchester museum was one of the top attractions so we decided to walk there (but took a bus back cuz we were tired n it was quite far from our hotel)

img_2928
after a long walk, we’re finally here!
img_2927
just for memories

 

img_2923
random gorilla in the museum
img_2920
I always wanted a lion as my pet. btw, this is a liger [male lion+female tiger]
img_3581
Saw this pretty graffiti wall (among others) so here’s some ootd shit

16403310_10154426224935819_128290530135924666_o2

There were some CNY decorations too because it was well, CNY.

We also went to PRIMARK! I think the stuff is really quite cheap, but of course, I am not sure about the quality. Bought a down lightweight pink jacket for myself for 15 pounds- and so far its been quite good. Oh and a cute little unicorn hot waterbottle which I unfortunately have no picture of (but you can see a glimpse of it in the video).

[wow its rly tiring to blog… i dont think i can keep up with this man]

DAY 2
ALSO as I said at the beginning of this post, I wanted to escape the weather at Uppsala [which was, now that I think of it, not too bad- it was around -3 degrees when I left.] BUT I THINK I BROUGHT THE COLD WITH ME because Manchester the previous day was like 7 degrees but the next day it went down to -1. While Uppsala went up to 5 degrees?! ASDIOASFJOSAD. but all is good because i am prepared!!!!

Ok so day 2- we went to…

16423030_10154426249460819_5529702917624867673_o
Old Trafford!

for those who are unfamiliar (like me before i went this place), Old Trafford = Man Utd (football) Club stadium. So i think Man Utd fans will go crazy. unfortunately, there wasnt any match on, so we went for the stadium tour which was pretty cool too! the guide was very enthu about giving the tour and evidently a very strong supporter of man utd haha. 16422689_10154426252300819_6354324591266616130_o

16387002_10154426248345819_6724842585344438158_n
one of the few footballers i actually know hahaha
16402692_10154426249440819_8958080687008729606_o
yo ho i dont know u but u r a good man

 

so after the museum tour, walked towards the river, near Mediacity UK, but lol the views was kinda meh and if we could do it again we would skip this [perhaps it would be better in summer. everything is.]

16402832_10154426249465819_8228431118026064814_o
its just too gloooomy

anyway!! we went to eat korean food after that, near our hotel. wooohooooooo

16388021_10154426240850819_649931408904121783_n
some of our pre-kbbq stuff

once again, cravings satisfied!!!! 😀

went to watch a musical, Sweet Charity that evening. omg lol honestly…

16487439_10154426240410819_5025444104486904943_o
the theatre was so small.

i am gonna sound ageist but there were mostly older people in the theatre and i was quite doubtful of the show. plus, the theatre isnt the typical musical theatre you see in Singapore’s MBS or esplanade- its like a circle theatre. Like so small. Its 3 levels.

16300393_10154426240590819_6031385066304365207_o
outside the theatre

and im glad to have been proven wrong. it was such a nice experience, the theatre small but this meant you could see everything (as compared to when you get cheap seats for a normal theatre and cant see shit) – and the actors were re-used several times but this just shows how multitalented they are. i loved it. in fact, i’d put it higher than Cats. Wicked is #1, Phantom is #2, Sweet Charity would be my #3. [at the point of writing, i’ve watched 2 other musicals in London – Matilda and Kinky Boots but i shall not mention them until i write about London]. I thought the show was gonna be lame. maybe it is an expectations kind of thing. i love the italian guy, i love the main lead, i love how the interval break was carried out- the actors walked in from behind, carrying a torch and saying the words ‘to be continued’.

16425880_10154426240035819_6290759760992150970_n
couldn’t find any proper poster to take a photo with so yeh this will do

 

 

i would really recommend anyone to watch this if you 1) have only watched the conventional musical type of style 2) love great live voices

oh one thing i realised was that the band was live, but it wasn’t real. meaning- it was done by 1-3 people. they used programs, synthesia, etc, but it sounded really good and i really respect their work- i sometimes wish to learn how to do this kind of things haha. so yay!!

DAY 3

so we kind of did most stuff in the town area and wanted to go out of town and thus a trip to Lake Windermere launched~

Took a train from Manchester Piccadilly (changing at Oxemholme) to Windermere, I think it was about 20 euros for a return tix but i can’t remember.

Even though Lake Windermere was known more for activities in the summer, it was still a nice place to go for a hike or walk along the lakes/mountains in late January, where it was about 5 degrees celcius.

Went to Orrest Head, a short 20minutes walk/hike from the station.

 

Orrest Head

 

The weather was definitely quite foggy that day, but I still felt very at peace

 

Foggy skies won’t stop us

 

This tree reminded me of Singapore’s “Instagram Tree” before it was struck by lightning

 

 

We then passed through the small little town en route to the lake (seen in the video).

 

Super a lot of ducks/swans/birds in general. This one was so close to me, I thought it was gonna attack me.
Our dinner! (5min walk from the station)

 

 

 

 

DAY 4

And for my 4th day, I hobo-ed in Manchester until it was time to take the night bus. During the day, I bid farewell to my sis and embarked on my first solo trip…!

Hobo-ing around the hotel for its free wifi, I went to check for directions  to get tickets for Billy Elliot the Musical; my plan B was to go to a standup comedy by The Comedy Store. It was raining heavily but I didn’t bring any umbrella so I just put on my hoodie and when I reached the Palace Theatre, I realised it was closed and that tickets were also sold out. Sad. Its okay, I still have plan B right? Walked for quite a while towards The Comedy Store, only to find out it is still closed. Looking back, I should have checked the opening hours or bought the tickets online. Not wanting to do nothing at night, I managed to grab a discounted ticket online for ~13 pounds.

I wanted to explore somewhere new in the day so I went to buy an all-day tram tix for 5 pounds and boarded the tram from St Peter’s Square to Bury.

 

The town of Bury – a random building 

 

I was so hungry by the time I reached Bury (about 35min tram ride?) and I wanted to try their black pudding as well so I ordered a breakfast set for myself!

 

Breakfast set @ 5.5 pounds. VERY FILLING, i couldn’t finish it. Free coffee&tea refill if I’m not wrong. 

 

It was super shiok and delicious but having a small stomach, I could only finish 70% of it (and that is after taking breaks). This was my first meal alone, and it felt weird. But i think it felt weird because the seat I was sitting at, was facing the cashier with no barriers between us; while the other seats were in a 2 by 2 kind of seating arrangement (facing other). I felt quite pressurised to eat quickly and couldn’t really enjoy taking my time (I eat super slowly). But anyway, the breakfast set that I got can definitely fill up 2 people’s tummies.

Having replenished my energy, I went to explore a little bit of Bury- and since it was a saturday, they had this huge market going on whereby I swear, if I was still hungry, would have bought more stuff to eat. They have cheap, grilled, whole chickens for only a few pounds and their one pound shop was so so so cheap! I regretted bringing so much things because I couldn’t buy it back. Their markets have everything- clothes, electronics, food, random stuff. It would really have been nice to come with a group of friends so I could buy more varieties of food to try AND an empty bag so I can bring it back to Sweden hahaha. The only thing I bought were some chocolates.

Anyway, decided not to explore so much of Bury because I went there for the East Lancashire Railway- I heard it was pretty nice to go on the train and hike up at some of the stops. Apparently, there are two types of train- the steam-powered type or the normal diesel one. I took the diesel one there because of better timings, but honestly, when I came back via the steam-powered one, it looked pretty much the same to me and I was not really that impressed.

So i arrived at Ramsbottom (reminds me of Ramsay Bolton lol) and was ready to head towards the Peel Monument!!!

IT started off well. I was following the signs, and the weather was quite nice. But somehow, I got lost. Amongst the roads, where cars speed like mad. It started drizzling. Then raining. The path I was following didn’t make sense anymore. It looked so slippery and like, it was so ulu. Honestly, if someone kidnapped me nobody would even know. Maybe i’m being dramatic but it was really quite scary for me, since it was my first time travelling solo. The path eventually led me to a war memorial place, which made for a nice break and also like a good sign because at least I’m not stuck in some foresty shady area.

I then saw the peel monument. However, I wanted to go back because I was afraid i’ll miss the train back, so I asked for directions back. However, perhaps a part of me wanted to just continue on despite the odds, so somehow, I walked towards the path towards the monument. It then started pouring. I was rewarded with a nice aerial view of the town when hiking up, but well, I was also rewarded with a little too much rain.

 

 

You can’t tell but I’m actually forcing this smile
Thumbs up cause I finally reached this stupid tower. (PEEL MONUMENT)

 

Finally made it, but well, it isn’t so impressive. But people are still coming here, jogging, with their dogs as well!! Its so nice to see dogs all around and running so freely, and it just makes the hike up worth it :’) Also, that’s how I got this photo haha. I was like trying to take a selfie but failing miserably, and I think this dude saw and decided to help me take HAHA. Also, sometimes the monument would be opened and you can actually go up and see an even better view of the town and its surroundings. That day was obviously not such a day.

Hiked back down, trying a shortcut path. It was slippery but quicker indeed. Thank god i did not get lost.

The train!! Not to Hogwarts Express unfortunately but to Bury.

Later that night, watched a stand up comedy. Apparently, it contains lots of British humor because like I don’t freaking get it half the time. I find myself laughing only at jokes that doesn’t need understanding of British contexts. I also found that some of the jokes were quite crude- like, it wasn’t really a high level of humor, but I guess maybe its just me. However it was quite an experience and I think people around me really did enjoy it because they were laughing at almost everything (but when I found the non-British jokes quite funny, others found it SUPER FUNNY. don’t know if it’s just me not being easily impressed or having no sense of humor/wit :O).  There were 4 or 5 acts, and an emcee. but i didn’t really like the emcee though, felt like he was being rather crude.

 

Standup comedy but I think i’m the biggest joke for coming here

 

 Click HERE for the Manchester video(excluding last day)!

Anyway, went to the national express coach station to wait for my midnight bus to London… which I will talk about in my London post soon 🙂

 

My thoughts about Trump

So erm it has been 3 weeks since I went for exchange, and it has been such an experience so far. Although, I admit that the winter depression is real. Haha. But I’ve learnt a lot as well, and made quite a few friends. Anyway, my post today isn’t about exchange but about Trump. Donald Trump.

I don’t read much, and I don’t think I am confident at all about what I am going to say. But i’m going to say it because I want to note down how right or wrong I will be, when I look back in the future.

Firstly, I hear the media portray Trump as a racist, sexist, bigot. And some of his words really hurt. Which is why I do not like him. I feel that, because he has a big influence as the POTUS, his words WILL be harmful. I read Xiaxue’s blog post about it too and I wonder- maybe, and also hopefully- we are all fools and he really has a big plan- uniting America against him. Making himself the enemy so that the world will spread love in order to fight against him. If this is truly the case… how often has this plan worked? And how long till it works? I would hope, sooner rather than later.

Also, I guess I feel a little more relatable to this whole Trump thing because so far in my exchange, I witnessed a protest in Stockholm, then a march in London just a few days ago. After taking a video of the protest, I had this Irish guy (he claimed) telling me that Trump is a good man, and asking me if I thought Trump was racist, and if so, is it because of the (social) media? He started talking about US-Syria relations, and another guy overheard so he interrupted and corrected him through some “facts” (I don’t know if its true or not, wasn’t paying attention and I am not well-informed). They started arguing, but the second guy had to rush for his train so he left abruptly, while I casually slipped away, not wanting to get involved in this. Thinking back, I should have perhaps tried to tell him that I thought Trump appeared racist. Maybe he could’ve enlightened me, or maybe I would not have believed him either way. It is quite bewildering at first, to think how Trump supporters can support the very man whose words have hurt and harm many. But I am trying to understand, and I do think that (some) media has exaggerated their claims about Trump. Yet, I do believe that all these arguments are just arguments- you only need to see the real life consequences of Trump’s actions. For instant, my current neighbour (I am living in Sweden for exchange) is born and raised in Sweden, but is an Iraqi, and isn’t allowed to go to US due to the travel ban. Such consequences- perhaps is sufficient to protest against Trump? I was slightly motivated by Xiaxue’s post. I saw her tweet reply to Shannon Woodward (a West World actress!!!) and got curious about it. I googled, after reading Xiaxue’s post mentioning about the muslim ban that Obama placed previously, but some articles are telling me that it isn’t true. Honestly, I think this is a real problem because I HONESTLY don’t know what is “real” or “fake”, or an “alternate fact” anymore. I try to be open minded, but then how do I know who to believe? Factcheck? To have the ability to tell what’s the truth or not is something I would truly wish for at times. Also, one of my courses in my exchange university had a guest speaker on. She sheltered lots of refugees, for more than 35 years, and I felt she genuinely helped people. I felt she had somehow the qualification to talk about whether the government should do more or less about refugees. When asked about Trump, she did not have a good impression of him, mocking his ‘Alternate Facts’. She acknowledges some people voted for Trump because they wanted a change- but it is scary how they do not know what type of change it will bring, and hopes America wakes up soon, and that it won’t affect the rest of the world as much.

Once again, I do not claim to know the facts, and this is just my (unresearched) opinion and experience.

Exploring CAFE FOOOOD! (Wild Honey Review)

So I went to this cafe in Scotts Square: Wild Honey. My friend made a reservation in case it got crowded- we went around 3pm and it was almost full. The ambience was quite nice, with artistic paintings and a casual vibe. But I’m not the type that knows how to appreciate the beauty of such art fully and was more interested in the food so I dived right into their menu. 

The cafe was known for their All Day Breakfasts (according to my friend la). I ordered a European set, while my friend settled for the Norwegian one. It was about $23-27 for each set. Wah damn expensive for me can, I don’t know how people can always go cafe hopping every other day. I think I can only afford to do this like once every 6 months.

All ready to eat liao, this better be worth it (European set + Strawberry milkshake)

I ordered a strawberry milkshake too- it tasted… quite standard? As for the European set, I thought it was nice too but I didn’t really know how to eat it in a nice way (the ingredients like dropped from the bread and the whole thing became very messy and chapalang. I’m just not a very civilised eater la). Also I felt quite full after eating like one out of the two pieces and had to rest for 10min LOL before I continued. Maybe you can share a meal with your friend and order something smaller (snacks?). But then again, I’m a light eater. 

Norwegian set

So yup, I probably wouldn’t come here again because though the meal is good (all their ingredients r rly nice) and ambience great, there is no unique factor about this cafe that makes me want to come back. In addition, it’s quite pricey to me (being the cheapo me, any meal above $10 is ex). But it is still good ok so yup do give it a try! Maybe their target audience is not students la but like working adults looking for a chill place in town. 
ps: Not affiliated with Wild Honey or any of its associations so like please don’t kill me for writing down my own personal thoughts.