If you ever doubted Singapore’s place at the global table, the last few days would have been a rude awakening for you. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is on the first official visit by a Singapore PM to the United States in 31 years, and there have been plenty of memorable moments. From President Barack Obama’s Singapore references to PM Lee’s Instagram mastery, here are the highlights (and lowlights).
High: President Obama’s knowledge of Singapore
From his exclamation of “Majulah Singapura”, to name-dropping rojak and durian, his Little Red Dot reference and his greetings in Singapore’s four official languages, the man was in fine form.
Low: Lee Kew Kuan?
There’s a pretty good lesson on dealing with mistakes in here though.
High: PM Lee’s punchline delivery
Comedy! That’s the political change Singapore needs.
Low: PM Lee’s toast
At least Obama went for a “yam seng”!
High: President Obama delivering a Trump dump in front of a Singapore flag
Not to take sides, but that felt pretty good.
Low: PM Lee having to stand around awkwardly for two minutes during said Trump dump
Cue the Curb Your Enthusiasm theme.
High: PM Lee proves he’s an Instagram star
From squatting to get the perfect angle to taking over the White House account for a day, PM Lee can out-Instagram most influencers.
Low: Crying babies ruin everything
Probably upset he couldn’t get into the Shigga Shay-headlined after party.
High: Ho Ching’s style
We dig the multi-cultural threads but it’s her use of a $14.80 purse designed by a student from Pathlight School that really made a statement.
Low: Ho Ching’s footwear
There’ll always be critics.
High: Asian flavors in the White House
Calamansi curd, spiced crab tuile and Asian yams roasted in palm sugar with Sichuan peppercorns. Not bad.
Low: No actual Singaporean dishes
What we’d give to see the two leaders bonding over some late night prata or bak chor mee with matching Milo dinosaurs.