Wednesday, August 18, 2010

What The...

I've been feeling rather uninspired lately, and sort of going through a blog existential crisis.  I started out intending to create more of a personal blog about a variety of things.  But somehow along the way it kind of morphed into a "fashion" blog.  Now I'm trying to figure out whether I want to continue down the same path or branch out and share about other aspects of my life - but I'd hate to lose existing reader interest by blabbing about non-petite related things.  And in addition, even if I stay with fashion blogging, my current picture-taking setup is less than optimal.  I've been playing with the idea of investing in a better camera, but DSLRs seem soooo complicated.  I also need a better place to take pics with natural lighting, but I'm too self-conscious to be able to pose outside.

Anyway, sorry for the random rant.  Here's something sort of fashion-related AND personal.  I was born in the year of the pig, month of the pig, day of the pig, and hour of the pig... the ultimate quadruple pig!  So let's just say I like cute pig-related items :)  And I thought this was one of the funniest thing ever:

"Heo" means pig in Vietnamese and sounds like "hell" spoken with a very fobby accent.   Aaaanyways, probably only amusing to Vietnamese people :)  This is a T-shirt sold by a company that makes funny Viet-related designs called AnhOi.  I considered getting one at one point but wasn't sure if I should get the child or adult version, which comes in a hotter shade of pink and also brown:

I can probably fit into a child size 12 since T-shirts run big anyway, plus it's cheaper ($15 vs. $20):

Here's another design that I liked:

Nguyen is a common Vietnamese last name but is virtually unpronounceable by most people, who tend to say it like "win" instead.  I actually had a patient called Nguyen Nguyen once and my 70-year-old British attending thought he came up with this joke and had such a cow with it.  I almost wanted to get him this T-shirt but didn't want to burst his bubble :)

These are a little expensive for novelty T-shirts so I haven't decided yet if I want to pull the trigger... but they look fun nonetheless.  I want the pig one... it's practically calling my name! :)


  1. I think you should blog about whatever makes you happy:) This is your space after all! I'm sure your regular readers will come back for more even if it's about non-petite related posts. If some do not return, then I'm sure you will still gain other followers with the same interests:) Keep up your awesome blog!

    I was born in the year of the pig, too haha These shirts are too cute. You should definitely get one!;)

  2. haha aww the pig shirt is cute and punny :) aaa .. the blog existential crisis. i in fact just had one a few hours ago. i am constantly feeling ashamed actually about my fashion/beauty blog - honestly i don't even know that much about makeup at all. i started off happily with my little personal blog blabbing about absolutely nothing to absolutely no one but it is nice to have readers who interact with you. don't be afraid to get personal! i find that after i blogged enough about fashion whenever i wrote a post just for me, readers would still read and respond to my serious topics :) i know you've read some of my more recent ones.

    it's a tough struggle simply because the people around me don't blog and they certainly don't blog about fashion or makeup or "waste of time or money" topics - at least to asian parents. it's hard for me to fully embrace this intense hobby without doubting and without a lot of support from my real-life friends. i don't enjoy the reactions of "oh .. you're one of those" or "oh .. you spend all your time dressing up and not studying." it's so frustrating to be met with this kind of opposition and it's much harder to resist these downers than a simple hate comment from an anonymous.

    blogging has always been a struggle of identity for me. so weird huh? it's a guilty pleasure and i guess in our areas of work, we need something to keep us going!

    even if you write about the nuances between political parties throughout the world and ages, i would still read. that's dedication! :)

  3. I love your post for 2 reasons: I am Vietnamese (so I can very well related to this post) and my last name is Nguyen :) I am going to get me that T-shirt. It's super cute. Alex Tran looks gorgeous as always. Thanks for the link. I didn't know about this company at all.

  4. LOL I know a few Vietnamese people with that last name so I hear about this all the time. Cute t-shirts!

    Just blog about whatever makes you happy too. The blog is for YOU really right?

  5. Agreed about you blogging about whatever you are interested in. It's your blog and your personal space, maybe this will attract even more readers, you never know until you try.

    I love the t-shirts, especially the piggy one, that's so cute.

  6. awww...I thought you were Chinese all this time!

    Definitely blog about whatever you want. I started out my blog with petite fashion in mind, and now I am slowly branching out into other areas of my life. I really want my blog to be about the quarterlife...the ups and downs of what a 20 something is going through.

  7. Lol! I completely also thought you were Chinese, even though I know your name..smacks head. Not that it matters, I just feel silly for making assumptions. I'm going to share this with my best friend who is Vietnamese.

    And to your original point, it's probably clear that I am losing direction fast as well. I agree with the others to blog about whatever you desire. It's not a's your personal outlet!

  8. Yeah I can sooo totally relate to you about what to post..I now just post about whatever I feel like it that day, I may not have many readers that share the same interest as me but as long as your happy. You should invest in DSLR camera, it's not really that complicated. I got one a year ago and now loving it =)

    I like their "de nghet" or "de thuong" shirts =)

  9. So weird but I thought you were Chinese too! I'm totally guilty of making dumb assumptions since you're in the medical field and I had many classmates in undergrad who were going to med school to fulfill their Chinese parents' wishes. By the way, how would you phonetically spell Nguyen for those of us who aren't Vietnamese?

    But anyway, I absolutely LOVE it when bloggers defect to other topics. Just like bloggers, we readers have varying interests too and because we are already interested in YOU, we'd definitely still be interested in non-petite fashion things. I find that I tend to have similar outside interests with the bloggers' I read. I would definitely encourage you to keep on blogging on whatever you feel like be it fashion or anything else.

    And as for the DSLR. Not complicated at all. I've had mine for over a year and sure there are still several things I could probably stand to learn, but they truly make a difference in picture quality. And learning to use one is actually a very fun experience.

    I can totally relate to your self-consciousness. It's actually what's kept me from starting my own blog because I don't have the best lighting in my apt and I'm way to shy to even ask a friend or roommate to take my pic. Nevertheless, I still encourage the DSLR which has sooo many other benefits to it. :)

  10. I totally understand what you are going through with your blogging dilemma. I was there (and probably am still there lol). My thought was I start the blog to learn about myself again and try to discover what i used to enjoy before i had a baby. Motherhood took a lot out of me (it is the best thing, dont get me wrong). Fashion is one thing that I like but my blog is full of random posts. It is my diary and journey that i want to document and share with those who are interested. I would whatever that makes you happy because at the end of the day it is your blog, it is your diary. You dont want to write to please people, it is all about you and your passion.

    People follow blogs for many different reasons you probably realize. They may follow you with the hope that you would follow them back without showing any genuine interest in your posts. So i am not worried about that personally. Plus I think I have a few special ladies who i interact with almost on a daily basis and that is more rewarding than I could imagine.

    Love those jokes and t shirts. I have always wondered why Vietnamese people have the same last name. I also thought you were Chinese.

  11. Forgot to mention...Dont you agree that we Asians are always curious to find out what other Asians are (Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese and etc.)? My husband said Asian people are weird lol.

  12. ohh blogging is so much fun & it should be fun because it's not a job. i think you should blog about whatever you want or else you'll loose interest!

    i thought about investing in a better camera too, but i think for now my digi cam is just fine for now. why don't you try taking pictures in different settings or have you husband do it for you instead?

  13. I totally support the "blog about whatever you want" thing! It's what I do, and it is so much less stressful! If I have some article of clothing to review, I review it. If I have something on my mind or need cheering up, I talk about that. It might not make for the most cohesive blog, but it works for me! I think it'd work for you too!

    PS: How do you pronounce Nguyen? That was my old supervisor's last name and she said it like NewJen almost. I hope she wasn't playing with me this whole time haha

  14. Hmm as far as blogging goes.. did you start this blog for youself? Or did you start it to gain followers? If it's for yourself.. I don't think you s/b concerned about "keeping" your followers or whether they're interested or not. It should be whatever YOU feel like writing about IMO. But, to each their own. I know everyone blogs for dif purposes..

    I like the last t-shirt.. brings back memories of teachers failing horribly to say my friend's last name. They would say "nuh-GOO-yen"!

  15. I agree with PAG's advice..."It's not a's your personal outlet!"

    So how do you pronounce "Nguyen"?

  16. This post made me laugh...especially the t-shirts...gotta get one for my sister- she married a "Nguyen"..LOL

    As far as your blog- you can do whatever you want and write about whatever makes you happy! I use it to de-stress me from my business!!! :)

  17. Blog whatever makes you happy. It might take a couple of mistakes, but you still learn what it takes to write a blog that reflects who you are and your vision. It shouldn't stress you out or make you think that you'll lose followers. People will follow if you write content that you love, not just to fill the page (so to speak).

    A DSLR isn't complicated, you can just use the Automatic settings. But if you experiment with the Manual settings, you'll definitely get more out of it. I have a regular point and shoot, but I try to push it to its limit to get the most out of it, whether it's through different effects, angles, lighting...there's so much you can do without a DSLR. It's nice to have, but it's not mandatory for taking great photos. It's the person behind the camera that matters most, not the equipment.

    As for the shirts, they're cute and definitely a novelty, go for it if you'll wear it! =)

  18. @Nelah, you are hilarious for pointing that out. Why is it that asians are so curious about other asians? I can never meet another asian and just be friends for years until we just discover the other's race naturally in a conversation? hahaha. Your husband is is so weird!

    These tshirts kill me softly but when you have Miss VN global Alex Tran modeling them w/her cute dimples, gorgeous complexion, and her short pixie haircut (that I think only a beautiful face like hers can pull off), she can make anything look good.

    I think branching out to other topics will allow your readers to identify with you even more.

    I look forward to a blog about your shopping experiences for a DSLR! (wink wink)

  19. I've been wanting that WTH shirt for a long time, but that NguyenNguyen shirt is awesome!! Can't decide which one I want more...

  20. Just to tack on my raised hand of embarrassment, I also thought you were Chinese. The way us Asians are really ... always wondering haha.

  21. I love those shirts :) I remember an oi clothing from a while back, I just never had a chance to order. Such a fun gift for siblings & cousins ^_^

    I didn't know you're Viet!

  22. Completely cute shirts. I lovely reading through all your explanations even though I am not a Vietnamese. I agree with what everyone else is saying. It's not a job, it's your outlet. That's what's fun about a blog. Hey, you are not getting paid by it, so you can do whatever you want with it. :) Looking forward to future posts, whatever the topics are.

  23. Thank you everyone for the supportive comments! And yes, I'm 100% Vietnamese even though I consider myself an honorary Chinese too because everyone thinks I look Chinese and I actually majored in Chinese in college! I don't know what it is either, but I'm also always curious in what kind of Asians everyone is too!

  24. the owl's closet - Yay for another fellow piggie! :)

    Angie - I know what you mean about non-bloggers not really understanding the experience... I haven't actually told any of my real life friends about the blog because I don't think any of them would appreciate this kind of thing and for some reason I feel more uninhibited this way... no worries about being judged and like you said, sort of like a guilty pleasure!

    PetiteLittleGirl & AubreyOhDang! - I had no idea the girl was famous! Thought it was just a random model... I guess I'm not too informed on my Viet culture stuff :P

    PAG - I'm sure many will agree with me that you do everything so well that I love all your posts, whatever it happens to be on! :)

  25. R.L. - I think it's safe to say that parental wishes for a doctor offspring is pretty much a universal Asian stereotype, not just a Chinese thing!

    Nelah - I've had diary-type blogs before and they never lasted because it was boring to keep up without any reader interaction. Having actual readers and interacting with the petite community is actually what keeps me going, and I'm afraid if I veer back towards the 'diary' type of blog I'd lose that. But maybe the key is a balance of both! :)

    Ping - I've tried other places in the apt and nothing really looks that great. Might have to resort to using hubby but he's not too keen on it (thinks I'll be too critical/OCD about getting things juuust right) and plus I feel a little embarrassed posing even in front of him!

  26. Erin, R.L. & Michelle - It sounds sort of like "nu-wien" but as one syllable instead of two. It's so hard to pronounce because people can't replicate the "Ng" sound, so I think each Nguyen person goes by a different version to make it easier on others :P

    sophia - I started the blog for myself, but also to be able to interact with other petite bloggers. And the more followers I get, the more I feel like I "owe" it to everybody to contribute interesting/useful things and not so introspective if that makes sense.

    stylepint - Your pictures are so good, I'm a little surprised you don't use a DSLR! I agree with you that a good camera doesn't necessarily make better pictures - but I love the DSLR-quality pictures! But it IS expensive and I'm not sure I have to time to tackle figuring out all the in/outs of photography. I tend to bite off more than I can chew in general :)

  27. I totally feel you about the pics thing. I have a hard time finding the time and a good backdrop during the day :( I also live in an apartment so I have no private backyard to take them in as well.. so much for natural lighting!

    And about your content, I do worry about readers/followers as well but at the end of the day, its refreshing to have an outlet for introspective thoughts! It's nice to get to know a blogger better too. Readers come and go and we shouldn't feel obligated about blogging. :)

    As for DSLRs I'm really liking the Lumix GF1.. I haven't even read the manual yet and I'm already taking some great pics. Plus there is a setting for easy pics.. Food, Parties, Objects, Portraits etc. and no need to fiddle with any fancy DSLR stuff! It is expensive but I find its SO worth it.

  28. those shirts are cute :)

  29. i started out as personal blog too but started to lean over to the beauty side but i think that you don't need to separate what you write into different places. if they don't want to read the personal stuff they can skim over it and if you want to say it, you should! it keeps your blog as your place and keeps your personality in it ;D

    & most of my viet friends' last name is Nguyen, i never pronounce it right and i spelled it until two years ago LOL, how do you pronounce it?

  30. I've been silently lurking in the background :), but I love your blog.

    I think that you should write about whatever excites you and makes you happy. Though, I do also understand how the interaction with other bloggers makes things more interesting to keep up with.

    Hope you keep writing!

  31. I still haven't figured the right way to reply to people who comment me.. through my own comment page or personally.. but I like it this way so I know that my replies are not lost via the internet! hehe.

    Yes, baby shampoo is a very common brush cleanser. I don't have that so I used dish washing liquid, which is a bit harsh on my brushes but it was the only thing I had handy. hehe

  32. The "It's a Nguyen Nguyen situation" is hilarious as it happens to be my last name. Thanks for sharing that website. I might actually have to buy a t-shirt...

  33. ellandish - Hubby and I keep flipping back and forth between whether or not to get a DSLR... and also deciding which one to get requires a lot of research too!

    cocoabee - I can't really describe how to pronounce it... but here's an audio clip!

    aspiringminimalist - Thanks for reading and for your support! I've seen you pop up here and there so you're not quite the silent lurker you profess to be :)

  34. Well the reason why I got it was because of 1) Japan trip 2) Etsy shop product photos and 3) taking more pics of my dog since hes getting old

    I think taking really great photos with friends 'n family is totally worth the cost of a good camera. Or even just everyday memories.. like food! eheh. Now that I've upgraded from point-and-shoot I don't think I'd ever go back... sigh there goes my money. haha.

    Also, you always have the option to return it after trying it out if you get it from a store with a good return policy :)

  35. :) i'm glad someone shares the love for antm! i'm impressed you've seen all the seasons. it will be my guilty pleasure show as i'm chugging through my neuro classes. i'm excited for semester to start and yet want more summer too.

    yeah .. 5'7" pfft that is like king kong in asia hahaha :D

  36. haha I've heard of Anh Oi before. Their shirts are hilarious! I want one!


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