#TREJournal July 10, 2016

To de-stress and to somewhat soothe my anxiety of school re-opening on Monday (and of other various challenges both online and offline), I had planned to go toy-hunting yesterday Saturday afternoon!

This started with a distinct task = to hunt for a "Ken Kaneki" Pop!Vinyl (to go with my Touka, from "Tokyo Ghoul"), and I'd thought to visit the Simply Toys outlet at Bugis Junction (first chanced upon while toy hunting with Marine while he was in town sometime back), and since they are the official distributors for Funko in Singapore, it'll be a done deal, right? Or so I had hoped...

And while all manners of anime-related Pop!s were available - from Astro Boy to Dragon Ball etc - there were no "Tokyo Ghoul" in sight (I asked and was told it was "Sold Out a long time ago"), nor any idea of "Vinyl Idolz" line too (*befuddled*), but there were some yummy Dorbz to be had tho …

Am I to give up hope to find Ken in SG? And turn to online purchases instead? #frustrating

Singaporeans love themselves some Pop!Vinyls, methinks! The short while I had lingered on in the shop trying to eye me some Ken, peeps sauntered in consistently, and loved stopping and standing in front of me to gawk and not bothered I was looking at the shelves?

Welcome To Singapore, folks! LOL

Pop!s have literally flooded the local landscape, from rent-a-shelf shops, to video game and electronics outlets, to even cinema snack counters - and while tis heartening to see folks here giving it shelf-space (SG-peeps love earning $$$ too, no doubt LOL) - it'll only work if you are looking for mass-market character figures … ironically, I was gagging for a Deadpool Pop! after coming out from watching the film in the cinema, but could't find any … now, tis all over the place again hahahahaha

Back to the hunt-at-hand … amidst some new Suicide Squad and Dark Knight Returns Pop!s, I walked away with a Battlestar Galactica set instead! Man, do I heart me some old school Cylons!

… anyways…

And of course I had to visit Action City - and thank goodness I did - as they had special discounts on select Artist Mix vinyls - and I could finally match my Ant-Man Cosbaby with Ant-Man Artist Mix set featuring designs by TOUMA! My first A.M. figures too!

I cannot deny that I have become am a "cheap shopper", but the reality of the Suggested Retail Price-points rivals that of any "art toy" standards available, and while I perhaps might understand the concept of "Cost Of Licensing", to me personally it cannot equate the basis of "Mass Production Quantity".

With a SRP of around SGD$50-55 per, at a 50% discounted price, is more my speed, IMHO.

But of course I am not a regular income earner, and no doubt the scene is thriving beyond my financial understanding of the masses :p

And how could I be at Bugis and not make the trek to my old haunting grounds (since back in secondary school in the mid-80s too); Bras Basha Complex! I aimed to check out the Hobby Point shop (mum took pictures of the shop for me, that's why I knew it existed lol), and I could also visit the acrylic shop on the 2nd floor, to look for "steps" for use in my display shelf for EVA#priorities

Sadly, the acrylic shop has since vacated the premises, and the hobby shop could not sate my toy-desires …

And as much as businesses and geography might change, so too might one's own tastes evolve and change too, I suppose...

Bobble-heading #Antman by @toumart x #Hottoys #toylife

A video posted by TOYSREVIL (@toysrevil) on

Funny how I whined on about NOT visiting Basheer Bookstore at Bras Basah, in case I go "dead broke", and still went up to the 4th floor (hoping to find some random art toy lying around - hey, it happened before, okay?!), and walked away with a "CANNABIS WORKS 2" art book by Tatsuyuki Tanaka … needing much inspiration to jolt-start what I hope to be doing "next" in my life, I had hoped this would do the trick … and I am met with AWE.SOME.NESS!

TWO spots I recommend any visiting friends to Singapore = (1) CSC / China Square Central for "TOYS", and (2) Basheer Graphic Books in Bras Basah, for the designer/art-books inclined.

And while I fear the existence of CSC for Sunday flea markets and toys in general might be a "memory" soon (Much like Clarke Quay Flea Market was yonks ago), as the locale is apparently earmarked for conversion to a "hotel" (???), Basheer has been in my memories since over 3 decades back, while I was in design school in VITB.

They used to wheel a luggage/suitcase to our classes, and within it were filled with design reference books, and we'd pre-order or reserve them, and be able to score them on the cheap(er) rate, as compared to buying them in brick-n-mortars … then when they opened up their present shop, familiar faces and purchases were met with straight-up discounts, without even asking for them.

From my interior design days, to my obsession with illustration and designs, and even through an animation-phase, and I even bought my first Clutter Magazine there too! Basheer is always my GO-TO spot for references!

I haven't been visiting the shop much lately these lean years, having been unable to afford the books or magazines, but walking in is ALWAYS a breath-holding thrill, and still is :)

Admittedly, I am a sentimental-sort of person, so notions like these appeals greatly to me … similar to "toys" too, in so much the search for more of the "feeling of collecting toys in the past", versus what's just "new and hot", right now in my cross-roads of my #toylife, I reckon :)

Don't get me wrong tho - there are plenty of awesome new collectibles out there now, but in my particular instance, a "pretty aesthetic" might not appeal as much to my dwindling finances, than a collectible with a "connection" - psychologically or sentimentally, IMHO.

I Like what I Like. Being able to afford all that I like, is another story altogether … a story no doubt shared with many a collectors out there, and far removed from folks who can afford whatever they want … these days, "sourcing" for toys is no longer an issue - a coupla clicks and you are sorted! Heck, I enjoyed that immensely myself, during those buntiful and carefree days of spending ... aaaahhhh! But somehow nothing beats the physical "hunt" of it all, ever a caveman in search of a tree branch shaped like a character toy lol

More of both Cannabis & Ant-Man Artist Mix in future posts, 'natch :)

#Cylon Pop!Vinyl in front of page from #cannabisworks2 by #tatsuyukitanaka FTW #toylife

A photo posted by TOYSREVIL (@toysrevil) on

Although the "anxiety" was quelled for a short few hours, the feeling at the bottom of my gut echos still, and perhaps will continue to after the semester ends, or whenever plans I have come to fruition … funnily enough, I am familiar with these feelings, as they have been with me all these years already … so perhaps "going on the toy-hunt" was all an "excuse"? Heck knows I've always missed my Saturday toy-runs!

Meanwhile, have decided to stay-in on Sunday to relish the quiet, before school begins a new term tomorrow!

I am a simple man, with simple plans and needs :)

Thank you for reading, and have a toy-tastic Sunday ahead!


(Do check in with your own retailer(s) for availability and pricing)