#youwearwhoyouare

#youwearwhoyouare is a social media project for a UVic digital storytelling class, using primarily Instagram but supported with Twitter and Facebook. I chose pieces of clothing with personal significance and provided the backstories. I included a teaser video optimized for Instagram and social media venues that autoplay video without sound. The hashtag is to encourage others to share stories about their clothes.

Share your story. Mention me and use the hashtags #youwearwhoyouare #writ326 #yyj #uvic #ootd.

A video posted by Hugo (@hugowongphoto) on

This Hardy Amies suit jacket, made-to-measure for my father in November 1983, fits me like a glove. Our physical similarities (coupled with a resurgence in 1980s styles) have allowed me to wear a lot of the things he used to. It’s inspired a lot of Macklemore jokes, and rightly so, but over time, I’ve realized that this piece in particular is sort of a “costume” for me, something that lets me pretend to be someone else — a better variation of myself. The well-padded shoulders and stiff canvas/haircloth chest piece make me walk straighter. It lets me fit right in at bars and parties where I feel out of place. I’ve always felt like an impostor as a writer because it does not come naturally to me, so this helps (because of course this is what all writers wear…). When I was in a leadership role, it made me look older, which gave me more confidence. The fact that it fits me like no off-the-rack jacket ever could is a big part of it, too. It's a bit anachronistic in its shade and in the shoulders, but it fits so well otherwise that it stands out just enough in a sea of charcoal, navy, and grey. In a sense, I aspire to live up to this jacket, which is odd, because I know these qualities aren't woven into the fabric necessarily, but right now it seems that way. I'll keep it in rotation for another thirty years, so at some point, I'll hopefully solve that mystery. @hardyamieslndn #youwearwhoyouare #ootd #yyj #uvic

A photo posted by Hugo (@hugowongphoto) on

Some people are surprised to learn that I was a musical theatre geek in high school. I’m not a bubbly person, but the two musical productions I starred in (the other being The Mystery of Edwin Drood) gave me a chance to escape myself and inhabit someone else. I relished it, but The Sound of Music was particularly challenging. I learned to dance (it didn’t last), played the bosun’s whistle (does it need to?), and faced a high school theatre geek’s dream/nightmare: stage kissing — which is honestly the least glamorous thing. I figured that stuff out, but it didn’t change the fact that my "kids" looked nothing like me. When I learned I was playing von Trapp, my race was the first thing I thought of. In case you don’t know, I look NOTHING like Christopher Plummer circa 1965 (or any year for that matter). The people playing the children were mostly white, though someone of Korean ancestry played Kurt, so that was close, I guess? I struggled for days to figure out why I was chosen, and whether I should decline the role because of it. At the first table read, the director addressed this after someone else brought it up (I wasn’t offended because I was just as baffled but didn’t want to say anything). She cited the 1997 version of Cinderella, which didn’t feel the need to explain its multi-racial cast. The matter was officially put to rest, but I never really got over it. I never saw myself as a plausible romantic lead, partly because there were no male Asian romantic leads in mainstream Western media at the time (2009) and partly because I had no personal reference to base my character on. von Trapp was everything I was not. I lost something like seven pounds due to stress alone. When the performance dates rolled around, I was so busy couldn’t think about any of this, which was probably for the best. I heard good things, but I'll probably never watch the DVD to find out for myself. I'm glad I did it, and I'd like to do something like it again, but I think I'm better equipped now. People love Glenn on The Walking Dead. I have a better haircut. #uvic #yyj #youwearwhoyouare #ootd #writ326

A photo posted by Hugo (@hugowongphoto) on

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