Her is coming to Singapore, and no. I am not talking about myself in 3rd person

Her, the most important app in the lesbian universe from Dattch have finally discovered Singapore! Yes, it took them a while to locate our little Red Dot(yes, yes, it can be difficult to locate even with a map and a clear “how to reach” guide), but now they are here – eh almost.

A few days ago, Robyn Exton emailed me (and I am sure quite a lot of others as well) where she asked me if I could help with translating their app into Chinese.

Robyn Exton mass email

Getting an email from the founder of Her, is to me like having two unicorns galloping through my kitchen while Jesus (the guy on the cross, not the Indian homeless guy from down the street) at the same time popped by to ask for a cup of sugar, so it took me a few re-reads before I got past the “it’s soon time for Her to lanch in Singapore”.

And then, I began to wonder about the email and what she wrote? “huh” “are they planning to launch a Chinese version of Her in Singapore?” and I wondered if we really had a large “Chinese” speaking lesbian community that I have missed out on? Sure there are Singaporean Chinese lesbians and bi’s, and I am supposed to be partially part of that group, but why would anyone ever make a Chinese app for Singapore – and then begin to talk about doing it in both Mandarin and Cantonese??

Would they also begin to do it in Hokkien, Teochew and other dialects like Malay and Tamil? That would be a crazy difficult task to do. It would be inclusive and very accepting of them to do so, but it wouldn’t really be worth it, as from my point of view, the queer community in Singapore is very English speaking.

So I wrote back to Robyn, and told her my point of view of translating it into Chinese. Didn’t get a reply. Didn’t really expect it either (oh yes I did!) as I am sure that she is very busy with taking over the world one lady at a time.

What do you think? Do Singapore really need a queer/lesbian community and dating app in other languages than English? Should it be launched in other languages than English or should they just make it available for Singapore now, now, now!

The next question will be if, or when, MDA and the religious community in Singapore will shit bricks and demand that they register the app with MDA as if anything, then this app will probably be seen as something that clearly will corrupt the innocent Singaporean youths minds.

Over the weekend I reached out to a few contacts who are closely connected to Dattch, and from there I could understand that Singapore is not the real goal. Taiwan is, but it were seen as something that could be included with the Taiwan launch. That explanation made it more understandable to me, and is really not something that I take offence to – I mean just make it available in Singapore, and I will forgive you.

I called Her a “dating app”. That is not exactly right. It is more a “lesbian social app” that have a social approach that focus on a social matchmaking experience mixed with Pinterest, that at the same time gives the user a better insight on what is going on in the nearby queer world and It further also promise that it is able to match you up with someone who aren’t an ex of your ex’s ex (good luck with that). You can read more here, here and here, or take a peek at their website here.

Her is only(??!) available to the non inclusive Apple users for now. Windows, Android and especially Blackberry users are left to stay in the closet for a while longer. I guess Dattch, the team behind Her, read this article that claims that women prefer Apple phones over Android? Well, hopefully they will see the light soon and launch on other devices too because Apple in Taiwan only got 9% of the market share.

 

 

 

 

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If she is in the closet, then you are in the closet. Or are you?

Dating a closeted is hard work.

I mean can you hold hands in public? Do you need to think about when to show affection? When are you able to call her dear or darling in public? Are you up to date with all her relatives, friends and co-workers so you can take one step away from each other when you happen to bump into one of them, when you are shopping for cheap wine together at 2am?

So, you just met (the new) miss perfect. Rainbows are brighter, you can ignore strangers or friends kids when they want to be picked up by you just because  you feel so damn giddy inside of yourself. You can smile to the world. You can even smile to the ones who are soo busy looking at your [insert body part here], that they don’t see your smile or that your face shine of bliss. You don’t even feel like screaming at the worst ones.

Okay something felt a little off, you told her on your second date, the day after your first date,  your coming out story and how you were able to handle the world and then were only met with silence and a stare when you waited for her coming out story.

And then she said “uhm, I am not really out to anyone important yet”

She is really amazing, smart, funny and talented in her own way. I mean so much that you halfway made room for her things in your nest, last night while you talked on the phone.

But then there is doubt.

Can you really handle to date someone who has made a life in the closet, when you have fought long and hard to get out of it yourself?

Does it really mean that you have to go through all your things and pack them down.

No more She+She tee’s. No more “gay” bracelets or earrings and begin to panic about if you really got any clothes that does not in one way or another say “gay” about you??

Is my blue jeans and white v-neck t-shirt too gay for everyday use if we just need to go down to the local cafe?

******

Some years ago this happened to me and I got to think about it again, when I called a friend to wish her a happy new year and in great details told her about my very crappy New Years eve because I had to urgently work, and then ended up with some people from the profession to celebrate a little bit with.

She of course had an amazing night at the place that I should have celebrated at and where she then ended up with someone who is now supposed to be the love of her life. Well, with the exception that her newfound love is closeted and Iranian (not that being an Iranian is bad), so her family will not, or might have a harder time accepting that she is gay compared to the rest of the world.

How do you handle dating someone closeted?

Are you supporting, can you wait for her without pressuring her to come out faster that she would be comfortable with?

Me? Well, I am absolutely the worst person in the world.

I am horrible, horrible, horrible when it comes to emotional and personal support to someone who is so deep in the closet that she decorated it with puff chairs and painted the closet walls in soothing colors.

I get panic attacks.

I tend to over complicate things and simply try out of the good of it, to be more in the closet myself and will get a rotating neck just for her, while I am on the look for someone she might know when we go out.

And at the same time I will also feel that I am going to explode in frustrations because she is not getting out fast enough.

Guess it is the u-haul person in me who want her to be everything with me, and that I know that she can’t be that person as long as she is not getting out.

So yes, I am just the crazy selfish person who will be supportive until I explode in frustrations and simply leave her, because I am so afraid of getting pulled back into the closet when I had to fight with so many (myself included) to really feel free of it myself.

In Singapore “Lesbian” is a naughty word. But “Gay” is not.

Did you know that in Singapore you can’t register a lesbian domain name, but it is possible to register a gay domain name?

While doing research for a story and a small personal project, I happen to pass by Singapore’s Domain registration organization SGNIC who is part of IDA(Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore) in Singapore. In short it is the people who manage all domain names ending with “.sg”, “.com.sg” and others ending with “.sg” and make sure that domain names are managed for whoever have an interest in registering a domain name representing Singapore.

So I went to their website to see what possible names that I could register that had any relation to my sexuality eh and food.

Well, what happen yesterday was that I got invited to a lesbian dinner event, and it ended up being so fun and interesting that I wanted to bring that idea with me back to Singapore.

The whole idea – or event – is that for you to become a member of the Lesbian Dinner Group, then you need to either get invited to a dinner by an existing member, or sign up by SMS and then host a dinner at a date of your choice and with a dish (or string of) that you believe that you can do. Members of the group can then sign up and get to join your marvelous culinary wonder and get to meet each other at your place as well.

It also got great dating potentials, without feeling like a date (to begin with).

As a guest you can choose to help out in the kitchen. Arrive later and help with the table and service, or arrive on time and then pay a little more than the others who helped out. It is all up to you, with (almost) no group pressure. The only rule there is, is that when you have signed up, then you pay if you don’t show up or find a substitute for you.

I decided to help out with the dinner. Not that I could do much, I knew how to chop vegetables, but didn’t know much about the dish itself, so I could only help out with what I could – and get to know the other women / girls / ladies / whatever, at the same time.

To me personally, I prefer to arrive early if I don’t know anyone, and try to help out with what there is to help out with so I get to know at least some of the other guests before everyone arrives. To me it is also fun to help out with the food and preparations.

Marvelous idea and loved it so much, that I thought that this could be a great, fun, cozy idea to bring back to Singapore. I mean what scary could there be to host a dinner for hungry eyed lesbians who expect nothing less than a wonder?

So with this in mind I went to SGNIC to see what domain names was available because I thought that it would be better to create a simple website for like minded to know about this event, instead of working with an SMS system like the one here. I could of course just have made an Facebook page, and guess that would have been much easier, but I really dislike Facebook.

Initially I began to search for domains that could hint at lesbian dinners and then got curious if the domain “lesbian.sg” was taken and what it was used for? But to my surprise the SGNIC website stated that it was on the reserved list. Meaning that the domain name could not be registered by anyone because it was a banned word.

My surprise only got greater when I then could see that it was possible to register gay.sg and that someone already have done so. It made me wonder what is so scary about lesbians in Singapore compared to gay men?? Are we really that scary??

What do you think?

Would it work out in Singapore?

Would you like to join a blind dinner date with hungry, starved lady loving women?