The Hello Kitty craze


Singapore Memory
Hui Ling

I don't think any Singaporean can forget the McDonalds' Hello Kitty Craze.

McDonalds introduced the Hello Kitty and Dear Daniel couple dolls available for sale with the purchase of any Happy Meal, and the nation went crazy queuing up for hours buying them. I, too, went to the McDonalds nearest my HDB flat at six am one weekday, queuing up till eight am, when I had to leave for work. Even for two hours, I couldn't get the dolls before I had to leave for work. I refused to give up after the two-hour-wait, and decided that I'll just be late for work.

Suddenly my dad showed up, berated me for queuing up over some useless dolls, and said he would queue up in my place, just so that I wouldn't be late for work. I was still late anyways, and colleagues laughed when I told them the truth. But they too shared stories of how they asked friends to buy the dolls for them and how some friends they knew took leave at work to queue up for the dolls.

Such is the kiasuness of Singaporeans. When I think back the foolishness of those days I felt stupid, but knew nothing would change if I could turn back time. I'm Singaporean, we are kiasu but we are hardworking, and we are passionate and share the same national culture, even if its for the Japanese Kitty dolls!