If you haven’t heard of Maggie Lai, don’t worry – here’s your chance to know her a little better. The courageous story of Singapore’s most well-known transsexual inspired local playwright Goh Boon Teck to write Purple, tracing Lai’s exploits from ’80s-era Bugis to Changi Village. The play launched to huge acclaim in 1995, followed by another sold-out run in 1998. Now Purple is set for its grand return, with local actor Shane Mardjuki (previously in SRT’s Twelfth Night) stepping into Lai’s sequins. To help him get into character, we requested an interview with Lai. Here’s what he – and she – had to say.
What’s your favourite spot to find good-looking singles?
Recently I’ve been into Indian cuisine, so I hang around construction sites and Tuas foreign-workers’ hostels. Many great catch, try!
Have you figured out a pick-up line that always works with men?
I usually say ‘$100 only’, and they always say, ‘You think you are Fann Wong, ah?!’
One issue couples have here is wanting to have sex, but they live with their parents.
Me and ah beng boyfriends have no problems – anyway they like to say ‘f**k your mother’, ‘f**k your father’ all the time, so vulgar!
Where are the best, most under-utilised private places in the city?
I am very adventurous – I have tried the Esplanade roof, under Merlion’s spit, inside the Flyer’s capsule and Titanic’d on top of Marina Bay Sands. I’ve yet to scale the Singapore Civil Defence Force offices!
What do you find the most annoying trait about Singaporean guys?
They always wear boxer shorts to hawker centres, sibeh [an extreme] turn-off.
On the flipside, how about guys carrying their girlfriends’ bags?
I was a boy who loved carrying handbags too! Guys, listen to me, it is very in to tie a scarf at the end of the right sling! Try it lah great sisters, come out now!
Where do you buy your lingerie?
Victory Secrets from People’s Park Complex has the best products to wrap my extraordinary and curvy figure filled with Siam silicon. They have promotion on Pink Dot Day!
How do you keep in shape? Do you have any particular skills or flirting techniques you use to woo a potential partner?
Woo? Where got time? I just need to pose by the streets and shoo shoo shoo, all men will come under my skirt! Power, right?
When you go on a date, who pays?
I will never pay, and you have to pay first! Please add $0.50 for the condom. Hotel 881. Room Service where got? Wear air.
Is there ever a right way to approach someone at a bar?
Very troublesome. My ex, Ah Long is inside now. I have to take bus number 2 to bloody Changi, queue at the gate, fill a bloody form and wait for the cute policeman to bring him out. Can only talk 20 minutes…sorry, bar? I thought you say ‘behind the bars’...
Do you think girls really are just looking for the ‘5Cs’ (car, condo, credit card, cash and career)?
So Pasir Ris! This is not 1980s hor! We sisters want 5Bs now: bungalow, BMW, boobs, bangs and bankers!
I’m not sure whether I should ask this, but do you know any good sex shops in Singapore?
They are called CC and RC in Singapore. We get orgasms by reading The Straits Times.
Is it all right for a straight man to wear platform shoes if he wants his legs to look good? I’m just asking for a friend, of course...
My sweet dwarf, it is okay, just nice to bury your face in my silicon valley. Wear your platform shoes if you want, just stop putting a sock in your panties.
Well, on that topic, what’s best to set the mood for my girlfriend: whips, whisky or whipped cream?
Forget your girlfriend lah! I can bring you to multi-level nirvana! Terrible you, is this a hum sup [pervy] question…but I like! It is better to start with whisky, then apply some cream, a good whipping follows, play some headbanging music and crescendo in mind-blowing activity! Call me MAAAAGGIIEEEEEEEEEE!
Finally, what are your thoughts on [actor] Jack Neo?
Please shoot movies, and not amateur actresses! By the way, quick remake ‘Bugis Street: The Movie’. I am okay to star in it. Please remember, I am Maggie, the Queen of Bugis Street!
Purple is at The Joyden Hall from 2-18 Aug. Tickets can be purchased on Sistic.