TK8315 a.k.a. ANeH (A New Hope) reporting. You might have noticed on my Trooping Record page that quite a lot of trooping missions have been completed the past few days. It was basically 3 straight days of suiting up in armour, from Friday to Monday. Here are the highlights, coming to you from the Stormtrooper’s point of view.
18th Dec – Trooping for Simply Toys at Vivocity
Simply Toys has recently opened up a new branch at Vivocity (on the 2nd floor beside PageOne) and one of our members offered to organize a troop for them to raise a bit of publicity. The Singapore Garrison has trooped for Simply Toys before and were very impressed with their generosity in return, so it went without saying that the Garrison would readily answer any further appearance requests from them.
The event was free-and-easy, we mostly just interacted with passers-by and took photos. Much toddler-scaring was had as usual, but there were also quite a handful of children who were not afraid and even eager to greet us.
Part of the fun in wearing my armour comes from watching the crowd’s reactions to us as we/they walk past. Reactions are varied and sometimes quite funny. I’ve even had grown women and teenagers run away from me before.Pictures here do not have me in it. They were only taken on Day two of the Vivocity Appearance; I was there on Day one when no photographer was present. Credits to Azhari and Esther for the pictures.
19th Dec – Christmas Kettling at Raffles City Shopping Centre and East Coast Seafood Centre
Once again I volunteered to help out the Salvation Army this holiday season to collect donations from the needy. This time around was different though, because I finally could wear my Christmas hat! ^_^
The Raffles City kettling was done together with my beloved brother and longtime friend TD8316. The sight of a clean Stormtrooper and a dirty Sandtrooper standing across a kettling pot was quite interesting, it seemed almost representative of the harmonic balance of Yin and Yang. :P Many passers-by were crossed with the decision of taking a photograph with either the ‘clean Mr. Star Wars’ or the ‘dirty Mr. Star Wars’. (Sometimes they had both. :P)
This time around we both had Santa hats on. I felt a lot better with it on, in some strange inexplicable way. Perhaps because I knew it will get the crowd to understand the cause I was supporting. Perhaps it was a sign that i was keeping up with my big brother. Or just maybe perhaps equipping it gave me +1 Charisma.
We were accompanied that day by a very pretty bellringer lady, whose name is lost on me but not the sly sandie. :\
Later on I headed down to East Coast Seafood Centre for the second and final kettling troop there. Together with two other troopers we attracted crowds to the kettle to make donations and take photos with us.
The fun part came afterwards when our shift ended; we took a bit of time to tour the Seafood Centre area, mingle with the crowds and diners and take a few funny pictures for posterity.
20th Dec – Adidas Originals Promotion Troop at Orchard Road
One of the biggest trooping events of 2009, 30-odd members of the 501st Legion including Darth Vader stormed Orchard Road on a busy Sunday afternoon to promote Adidas’ new line of Star Wars-themed footwear and clothing. Toting Adidas bags and ‘strutting down Orchard Road’ with pride, we garnered the attention of many tourists, shoppers and motorists who sounded their horns in salutation as they watched us march down pedestrian crossings.
We later on had a ball of a time pretending to be shoppers inside Adidas’ store at Pacific Plaza, attracting many onlookers from outside and seizing once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to wear Adidas apparel outside our armour pieces. :P Well, I don’t know about them, but I sure did.
I was elated to find out later that we were featured on a local newspaper, numerous TV channel newsreels including Channel 8, Channel News Asia and Suria, and even Reuters!
I had, days ago, passed by a landmark on Orchard Road which I thought so profound that I promised myself I would one day take a bunch of troopers with me to get a picture taken with this landmark. It was sheer luck that our trooping event took place so nearby to that location, so later on that evening when the official troop was over I brought a bunch of ragtag renegade Stormtroopers with me to fulfill my mission. Donning our Santa hats, we spread the spirit of Christmas to all passers-by along the way, stopping many times for pictures.
And here was our mission objective. The address of Wheelock Place. This picture sort of summarizes the events of that day: the 501st Legion had stormed and conquered Orchard Road!
Much fun as a Stormtrooper was had, but the party ain’t over yet. Next up, End-of-Year 2009!