My 2019 in AsiaOne: I got paid to eat free food and check out hot guys

A year ago, I was your typical unfulfilled millennial — slaving away at a job that didn’t fit me and dreaming of my next overseas getaway. Every weekday was just a hurdle to cross in order to get to the finish line i.e. the weekend. 

Then, I joined AsiaOne in June this year. I’m not going to lie, weekends are still the best thing ever. But I’ve also got to do some pretty cool things while on the clock. Six months and 170 stories later, here are some of my highlights of the year, all in the name of work.

First off, I’m pretty sure I’m now a certified expert on fried chicken after I ate more of it than any person should, from Taiwanese-style cutlets to Korean-style drumlets. My excuse? I’m just doing proper research by trying every flavour. 

Other interesting “research” assignments included ascertaining if the hawker dubbed Bukit Merah’s Song Joong-ki really resembled the Korean actor (he doesn’t — but his budget-friendly bubble tea is worth a try).

Then again, who needs off-brand Korean stars? I was lucky enough to score the opportunity to interview actual, real-life celebs Kim Jae-wook and AB6IX when they were in town for an awards show. Sure, it might have been one of the most nerve-racking experiences ever (introvert problems), but how often do you get to meet a super-hot actor and an incredibly talented and popular K-pop group?

In all seriousness, besides celebrities, some of my favourite interviews this year have been with Chris, a funeral director, and Dolly, a matchmaker, as part of AsiaOne's Why I Do What I Do series. Not only was it inspiring to chat with people with incredible passion in what they do, I definitely learnt some lessons about life, death, marriage and everything else in between.