It has to be well-paying too for what it is worth, since the money has to go into my Stormtrooper armour costume, for my admission into the Singapore Garrison of the Internationally-recognized 501st Legion, which will arrive from the US in mid-June (and I must pay for and collect it as soon as possible).
Furthermore, I had hoped that it would be a no-stress affair, something I can do that is fun, enjoyable and would relieve me from my revision stress.
Seems like I hold very high expectations for my part-time job, eh? What are the chances I can find one that fits all three stringent criteria?
Months ago I had considered doing saikang (shit-work, basically you are tasked with an extremely mundane and tedious workload) at a sports complex of which a freind’s father of mine was boss. $9 an hour, if I worked 9 to 5 over two five-day work weeks I would hhave just enough to cover all expenses. But that would mean having to sacrifice precious time which could have been used for studying. The situation looked desolate, and I was ready to submit to it.
One fateful night, after a photoshoot outing with the 501st at Merlion Park, the gang and I hung around for a while. And that was when I got acquainted with Movie Mania, through a charming individual with a burning passion for the things he loves. He was a former 501st member, and was the first Darth Vader costumer in Asia.
Now I make temporary minimum wage by putting on costumes and putting smiles one peoples’ faces, old and young alike. My appearances are mostly on weekends, the pay is reasonable, and best of all, I have so much fun doing it. :3
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. I remember, it was only 3 years ago when I first encountered the 501st. Back then all I could do was gape in awe at how these fellers could bring a silver-screen element to life, and take pictures with them like any other fan would do.
Last year at STCC, I went with my then-classmate Ron, another Star Wars fan, and met up with the Gordonator, whom then I associated with as an active Singaporean animeblogger. Both of them had intentions of joining the Singapore Garrison. We inquired about it, and I was daunted by the cost and the dedication required to build up these armour kits (just as I was surprised at Ngee Ann Civic Plaza two years ago when I heard the same thing from the guy manning the booth). Nevertheless, I eventually signed up as a volunteer together with the both of them (Ron had actually successfully compelled a very reluctant me into joining).
Fast forward to today, both of them are trooping around in their Stormie outfits, and I serve as an active volunteer, photographer and personal assistant to the two them, as well as the other costumers in the 501st wearing more badass costumes like Boba Fett and Darth Vader. From the 501st I’m getting premiums and collectibles, photo-taking opportunities, developing friendships with like-minded Star Wars fans, and even invites to parties and family gatherings (where I show up at the door and get responses like, “oh, you’re with the Star Wars right? Hey [insert name here], your star Wars friend is here!”)
Still, what remains was my passion for wearing costumes, pretending to be some character from some TV show or movie which I like, and entertaining crowds with my gimmick. I did not want to limit myself to just Star Wars in the 501st. So God bless the fact (yeah I’m semi-Christian now) that I met Reno that night, and got contracted as a costume ‘talent’ under Movie Mania.
The first step I took was joining the 501st. Many steps later, I’m doing what I love and getting rewarded for it with Movie Mania (and still with the 501st). Just goes to show how important taking the first step is, eh?
Back to my part-time job. Over the next few weekends (and a few weekdays here and there), I’ll be making costume appearances at various locations in an Optimus Prime costume, as the MM gang and I pave the road to the Transformers 2 Gala Premiere at the 22nd of June. If you’re in Singapore and wanna meet up some time and take pictures, feel free to contact me.