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Insomniac x May Ching, archer

Maybe you’ve seen her around, with her outlandish hair highlights in seasonal shades of red, pink or even green and wondered to yourself if the persona within is as flashy as her exterior suggests. Cherie Anne interviews May Ching, a Japanese studies major, on a lazy Friday afternoon, about her passion for archery.

1. What got you started?

M: As a kid, I had an archery centre near where I stayed in Malaysia. It taught me the basic ropes of archery skills such as bow handling with short distance shooting.

C: They let kids shoot real, pointy arrows?

M: Yes, it was all very real but relatively safe as compared to competitive archery due to the distance factor.

C: Did you continue practicing archery from then on?

M: Well, my parents wanted me to do other sports like tennis and squash instead of archery, so I stopped for a while. Also, there wasn’t an archery cca available to me in secondary school. But it didn’t mean that my interest in archery had waned. So, when I came to NUS and saw the archery booth at the cca fair, I thought “why not?” and have been with archery ever since!


2. If you had only three words to describe yourself, what would they be?

M: Loyal, stubborn and weird.


3. What is your favourite aspect of what you do?

M: Well, I have to say that it is the satisfaction I gain from it.

C: From winning in competitions?

M: Not exactly. It is the satisfaction from learning something and getting it right. Whenever I shoot in form, it gives me immense satisfaction. It takes both physical and mental strength to perform well in archery and most of the time, its the mind that affects your shooting form.


4. How do you cope with the ‘wow that’s so cool’ responses you get when people find out what you do?

M: I find it very stereotypical because people tend to view archery as a sport based off popular culture such as being able to shoot an apple off a person’s head or go fire off arrows as quick as Legolas in Lord of the Rings. In truth, its possible to perform the former but its not what archery is truly about.


5. What advice would you give to those chasing their dreams and figuring out their identities?

M: Don’t be afraid to try anything. You may like it and maybe you’d be good at it, it may even change your life forever; you never know.


6. Where do you see yourself in ten years?

M: I’m not sure if I’d still be involved in archery though I hope I will be. Singapore isn’t the most conducive place for archery and recently, the national range was closed down to build more HDBs. But I’d be working, of course and possibly continuing to practice archery in my spare time or maybe I’d even be coaching!


7. Let’s play the traffic light game.

M: Green; I’m looking for my one true love! For the Robin Hood to my Maid Marian!

(*Maid Marian is RH’s wife.)

Insomniac shoots the recreational archer a few quick-fire questions to get those mental reflexes going.

  • Pink or blue?

Blue, because it’s my favourite colour!

  • McDs or KFC or BK?

BK (because its in arts so I see it more often.)

  • Yukata or Kimono?

Yukata (a kimono is horridly complicated

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and expensive – the cheapest is about $5000.)

  • PC or Mac?

PC (Mac is too complicated.)

  • Android, iPhone or BB?

None of the above, I have a Sony Ericsson phone which I bought last Oct.

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