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22 August 2014
"I fly here 3-4 times a year for work. I’m coming from Holland and the usual route is right over the Ukraine but this time we detoured. The plane crash was really hard for us as a country. We lost a lot of people. It has really made us rethink our place in the world and whether we are as safe as we believed. Personally it shook me up too. I’ve flown over that war zone plenty of times. It could just has easily have been me. And I’m not ready to go. I still have a lot of living to do."

"I fly here 3-4 times a year for work. I’m coming from Holland and the usual route is right over the Ukraine but this time we detoured. The plane crash was really hard for us as a country. We lost a lot of people. It has really made us rethink our place in the world and whether we are as safe as we believed. Personally it shook me up too. I’ve flown over that war zone plenty of times. It could just has easily have been me. And I’m not ready to go. I still have a lot of living to do."

21 August 2014
"Guys like me are pretty invisible. In some ways that’s a good thing and I’ve even had some guys say, ‘Why do you want to tell the world about us? Isn’t it better to just stay secret and pass?’ But it can be really isolating - to not know anyone like yourself who knows what you’re going through. The first time I met another transman in person, it was like a weight lifted off my shoulders. Trans women are a lot more visible, but there are actually many of us transmen in Singapore. So I’ve just decided to be out about it and I’m going to do a documentary about my transition.

I hope that by making this film and by being visible, that other transmen won’t feel as alone as I did. Nobody has done a documentary like this before - personal stories, peeks into our lives to show that we’re more than just our surgeries. So far the response has been amazing. Lots of people have offered support. But the thing that I feel best about are the emails I’m getting from all these guys saying how just knowing that I’m out there makes coping easier. It’s a real lifeline.

I understand that being out like this might have some personal cost, but acceptance will never happen unless some people are willing to put it on the line. And that’s what it means to ‘Man Up’, isn’t it? Taking responsibility and care for those around you, even if it’s not easy.”

Follow Chris and his project here: Some Reassembly Required

"Guys like me are pretty invisible. In some ways that’s a good thing and I’ve even had some guys say, ‘Why do you want to tell the world about us? Isn’t it better to just stay secret and pass?’ But it can be really isolating - to not know anyone like yourself who knows what you’re going through. The first time I met another transman in person, it was like a weight lifted off my shoulders. Trans women are a lot more visible, but there are actually many of us transmen in Singapore. So I’ve just decided to be out about it and I’m going to do a documentary about my transition.

I hope that by making this film and by being visible, that other transmen won’t feel as alone as I did. Nobody has done a documentary like this before - personal stories, peeks into our lives to show that we’re more than just our surgeries. So far the response has been amazing. Lots of people have offered support. But the thing that I feel best about are the emails I’m getting from all these guys saying how just knowing that I’m out there makes coping easier. It’s a real lifeline.

I understand that being out like this might have some personal cost, but acceptance will never happen unless some people are willing to put it on the line. And that’s what it means to ‘Man Up’, isn’t it? Taking responsibility and care for those around you, even if it’s not easy.”

Follow Chris and his project here: Some Reassembly Required

21 August 2014
Meanwhile at Haji Lane…

"Ever since I was young, like 3 or 4, music has been my passion. I hope it can be part of my career one day. It will be perfect to be able to do something I love every single day.

But for now, I’d just like to make it on youtube.”

So I found her on youtube.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsFoRoGRQSE

Meanwhile at Haji Lane…

"Ever since I was young, like 3 or 4, music has been my passion. I hope it can be part of my career one day. It will be perfect to be able to do something I love every single day.

But for now, I’d just like to make it on youtube.”

So I found her on youtube.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsFoRoGRQSE

21 August 2014
"I take home an average $7500. But sometimes I make as much as $8500.

Now that guy who says he made $7k only drove about 8 hours a day. So he lied. He was sharing a cab. You can’t possibly earn that much when you share. When you share you will make about $2500-$3000.

But if you drive one man show then can… but you must sit here and drive at least 16 hours. Not say 16 hours but that includes eat lunch, take your break, spend time with your friends, talk 2 hours, whatever. You want to earn 7k you have to be serious. You take breaks like that I tell you very straightforward it’s not possible.

I also have one friend who also did this but he never took care of himself and he died.

He used to have a job in a coffee house. It was a good job. Pay not bad plus CPF and annual leave. He should have kept it. But he saw how much money I made driving cab. So he got his license, quit his job and started driving full time. He was earning $12k a month. Really. But how he drove was terrible. He was driving 22 hours a day. He only slept 2 hours a night. He started at 4am and would finish at 1-2am. He would eat in the taxi, sleep in the taxi. He drove like this for 6-8 months and had a heart attack and died… in the taxi. He was 42.

So I tell you it is possible. But you have to be serious. And you must also take care of yourself.”

"I take home an average $7500. But sometimes I make as much as $8500.

Now that guy who says he made $7k only drove about 8 hours a day. So he lied. He was sharing a cab. You can’t possibly earn that much when you share. When you share you will make about $2500-$3000.

But if you drive one man show then can… but you must sit here and drive at least 16 hours. Not say 16 hours but that includes eat lunch, take your break, spend time with your friends, talk 2 hours, whatever. You want to earn 7k you have to be serious. You take breaks like that I tell you very straightforward it’s not possible.

I also have one friend who also did this but he never took care of himself and he died.

He used to have a job in a coffee house. It was a good job. Pay not bad plus CPF and annual leave. He should have kept it. But he saw how much money I made driving cab. So he got his license, quit his job and started driving full time. He was earning $12k a month. Really. But how he drove was terrible. He was driving 22 hours a day. He only slept 2 hours a night. He started at 4am and would finish at 1-2am. He would eat in the taxi, sleep in the taxi. He drove like this for 6-8 months and had a heart attack and died… in the taxi. He was 42.

So I tell you it is possible. But you have to be serious. And you must also take care of yourself.”

20 August 2014
"I’m a voice coach."

"What’s something about singing that most people don’t know - something that applies to life in general?"

"After all these years, I can say there is no way to know a person’s potential until they’ve had a chance to train. Some people sound good at first but only manage to progress so far. Others might not sound like much but turn out to be fantastic. Never assume someone is good or bad based on first impressions. Give them a chance and they may surprise you."

"I’m a voice coach."

"What’s something about singing that most people don’t know - something that applies to life in general?"

"After all these years, I can say there is no way to know a person’s potential until they’ve had a chance to train. Some people sound good at first but only manage to progress so far. Others might not sound like much but turn out to be fantastic. Never assume someone is good or bad based on first impressions. Give them a chance and they may surprise you."

20 August 2014
"I always wanted to get a degree but my family couldn’t afford it when I was younger. When I got my first job I became the main breadwinner of the family. So now, at almost 40, I’m finally pursuing that dream and I started a part time degree course in June. 

It’s really difficult to return to studies after so long. It’s not just about learning how to perform academically - a lot has changed. Now everybody uses e-books. I find that hard to adjust. While all the others in my class are working off of iPads and laptops, I’m still printing it out old skool. But I’ll do whatever it takes. I’m really determined to make this dream come true.”

"I always wanted to get a degree but my family couldn’t afford it when I was younger. When I got my first job I became the main breadwinner of the family. So now, at almost 40, I’m finally pursuing that dream and I started a part time degree course in June.

It’s really difficult to return to studies after so long. It’s not just about learning how to perform academically - a lot has changed. Now everybody uses e-books. I find that hard to adjust. While all the others in my class are working off of iPads and laptops, I’m still printing it out old skool. But I’ll do whatever it takes. I’m really determined to make this dream come true.”

20 August 2014
"I spend 8-10 hours a day caring for the cats. Between feeding them and cleaning up afterwards, it’s a lot of work. But I love it. I’m 69 now and live alone. It’s bad to stay at home with nobody to talk to… You can get dementia if you are alone all the time. So I come out and care for the cats. They are my family."

"I spend 8-10 hours a day caring for the cats. Between feeding them and cleaning up afterwards, it’s a lot of work. But I love it. I’m 69 now and live alone. It’s bad to stay at home with nobody to talk to… You can get dementia if you are alone all the time. So I come out and care for the cats. They are my family."

9 August 2014
"Hello Uncle"
*music*

"How are you doing? What’s your name?"
*music*

"OK have a nice day. Take care."
*waves* *music*

Best conversation ever. Every reply was music to my ears.

"Hello Uncle"
*music*

"How are you doing? What’s your name?"
*music*

"OK have a nice day. Take care."
*waves* *music*

Best conversation ever. Every reply was music to my ears.

9 August 2014
"I grew up in Singapore but then we moved to London when I was 6. We are back after 10 years away and now I have 2 years to learn Singlish before NS starts! I like it a lot better here than London. In London I needed permission from my parents to go anywhere because it’s not safe. Here they are happy for me to take public transport and cabs so I have a lot more freedom."

"I grew up in Singapore but then we moved to London when I was 6. We are back after 10 years away and now I have 2 years to learn Singlish before NS starts! I like it a lot better here than London. In London I needed permission from my parents to go anywhere because it’s not safe. Here they are happy for me to take public transport and cabs so I have a lot more freedom."

9 August 2014
Thanks to everyone who has been a part of making Singapore the amazing place that it is and for making National Day special.

Thanks to everyone who has been a part of making Singapore the amazing place that it is and for making National Day special.

Faces of Sungei Road Theives Market - the government has announced that the market will close sometime in 2017 when the MRT currently being built in the area is opened.

Faces of Geylang Serai on Hari Raya - Domestic workers, mostly from Indonesia, gather for a day of celebration

5 August 2014
"I don’t pick people up on the street anymore. I just use Easy Taxi or Grab Taxi. They pay me $3 for every booking - so every time I pick someone up on the street, I lose $3. You see I don’t even on my company system anymore.

Comfort lost a lot of call business so they don’t like it. But the small companies don’t mind if you use the apps.

Every day I do about 20 jobs from the apps - that’s $60/day or an extra $1800 per month. Why would you pick up from the street when you can earn an extra $1800 per month?”

"I don’t pick people up on the street anymore. I just use Easy Taxi or Grab Taxi. They pay me $3 for every booking - so every time I pick someone up on the street, I lose $3. You see I don’t even on my company system anymore.

Comfort lost a lot of call business so they don’t like it. But the small companies don’t mind if you use the apps.

Every day I do about 20 jobs from the apps - that’s $60/day or an extra $1800 per month. Why would you pick up from the street when you can earn an extra $1800 per month?”

4 August 2014
"On the last day of Ramadan, my mobile phone was stolen from the room I rent. The police did an investigation and caught the guy very quickly. It was the cleaner. He was from Sri Lanka and would go to jail or be sent back. He came to me crying. He said he was sorry, to please drop the charges. We Muslims learn it is important to forgive people. I don’t want this man to suffer so much for his mistake. So I dropped the charges. I didn’t get my phone back, but I will make the money again and buy a new one some day if it is meant to be."

"On the last day of Ramadan, my mobile phone was stolen from the room I rent. The police did an investigation and caught the guy very quickly. It was the cleaner. He was from Sri Lanka and would go to jail or be sent back. He came to me crying. He said he was sorry, to please drop the charges. We Muslims learn it is important to forgive people. I don’t want this man to suffer so much for his mistake. So I dropped the charges. I didn’t get my phone back, but I will make the money again and buy a new one some day if it is meant to be."

4 August 2014
"We walked around the market and asked people to give us food they didn’t want - stuff that couldn’t be sold. After we gathered it all, we prepared it and went back around giving those same people what we made. It was a little experiment in reciprocity and sharing.
At first everyone thought we were just some crazy ang mohs. But when we came back with prepared food, they were really happy. After that we had even more offers of food and drinks.”

Welcome to Singapore where 
Shared food = Instant community

"We walked around the market and asked people to give us food they didn’t want - stuff that couldn’t be sold. After we gathered it all, we prepared it and went back around giving those same people what we made. It was a little experiment in reciprocity and sharing.
At first everyone thought we were just some crazy ang mohs. But when we came back with prepared food, they were really happy. After that we had even more offers of food and drinks.”

Welcome to Singapore where
Shared food = Instant community