SURPRISE ME SINGAPORE – Am I not ‘pretty’ enough?


The inspiration for ‘SURPRISE ME SINGAPORE’ was conceived yesterday because I didn’t get a role I auditioned for and my immediate thought process was, “Of course I didn’t I’m too dark, I don’t look like…” But the truth is, the overwhelming desire to voice my sentiments about the local media scene, TV, print & film to be exact, has been growing since I first participated in a beauty contest for a local magazine years ago. The winner of that contest would make the cover of the magazine. Funny how I innately knew that I would not win even if I brought my A game, yet some part of me just needed to be proven wrong.

Did I think I was pretty enough? Hell yeah! I’m not even going to pretend to be humble. Did I think I had a rocking body? Yes definitely. Did I think I would be one of the best looking girls in the competition? Without a flicker of doubt. Despite how sure I was of my appearance, I was equally sure that I didn’t stand a remote chance at even coming in third place. Why? Because no one with my skin tone had graced the cover of a local magazine unless he or she was fairly famous. Needless to say, my gut was right. Not only did I not make top 10, the winner turned out to be a short, plain looking, light skinned girl who’s looks paled in comparison to the other 9 other finalists. I don’t hold it against her. She was a nice girl and went on the become a relatively famous singer but I will confidently say she was in no way ‘magazine cover’ quality.

Here’s where you rebut, ‘beauty’s in the eye of the beholder’ and I will agree with that. She was probably beautiful in the eyes of the magazine publishers who knew what their readers wanted to see on their magazine cover. In fairness to the magazine (no pun intended), I was the only one called back for the main photoshoot with the winner and the rest  of the finalists, even though there was no reason for them to do so. I guess they found me attractive enough and wanted me to at least know. I was so grateful and confused at the same time. But it was all good. Got me thinking though.

Then I went on to join other competitions. I always came very close to winning and was told that I had great potential but never won. What bumped me out was in most instances, the winner was never pegged as the winner by anyone else except by the people with the power to choose her. And with the few auditions, contests and competitions under my belt, I noticed a running theme; no one who looked like me (I’m referring to the colour of my skin here) ever landed the gig. Coincidence? Hmmmm. I don’t know because I haven’t put myself out there enough to know if I’ve been discriminated against or that I’m just not pretty, tall, funny, smart, cute or sexy enough to land that role, get that gig, grace the cover of that magazine. Most will probably say that I’m not famous so why would I deserve those opportunities in the first place but that’s a chicken or the egg situation isn’t it? How does anyone who was never given the opportunity became famous? Duh!

So here’s what I’m getting at. Maybe I am not good enough and that is why I am not Joanne Peh or Fann Wong or Rui En or maybe I am not any of these women because I don’t ‘look’ a certain way. My guess is as good as yours. I love my country and my fellow Singaporeans and this is why I am going to give Singapore a chance to surprise me. I am going to do my homework to find out how baseless or justifiable my views are. Follow me. It’s going to get really exciting. All I want is to be SURPRISED!


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