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Everything posted by Gadfly

  1. I don't post much anymore, but I recall thousands of posts about corruption in Thailand here - often just annoying but sometimes far worse. I stumbled a across a site and app you can now download to instantly report corruption. Its here :http://th.bribespot.com. First thing I noticed is that the corruption reported on that site is the same old nonsense that we have been complaining about for years. Good news its that its not on adult site and its available in the Thai language. In others, a venue to vent to a much larger audience. And so interesting to see how the petty scam we were complaining about 10 years ago are now appearing and what appears to be a professional anti-corruption website.
  2. The story is hard to believe as reported for many reasons. But, since Ms Kakanang is a diplomat, we may never hear her version of what happened. Another Thai mystery.
  3. "There are many other ways to welcome foreigners and tourists after the launch of the AEC," he said. He suggested improving Thailand's tourist attractions and promoting Thai culture would be a more responsible approach. This old pipe dream will never die.
  4. I checked the thermometer outside my condo about an hour ago and we hit 43 Celsius today.
  5. It's been uncomfortably hot for the last week. This afternoon when I checked (around 1 p.m.) it was 39.5 C. Everyone, including the Thais, seems irritable, but maybe that is just me.
  6. I am not out much these days (hence, less posting), but I was out in Soi Cowboy late last week, and Dave the Rave is right about what the Man from Iran (like that phrase) is charging for beers at his places. The other thing I noticed was that most of his bars had few, if any, customers while the bars on Soi Cowboy that do charge reasonable prices were pretty full. I don't understand the Man from Iran's business plan: buy bars, jack up prices, drive away customers and (almost certainly) reduce revenue? I don't get it? In any event, when I do go out these days, I almost always end up in NEP.
  7. I don't think I have ever had a drink in a NEP bar before 7 p.m. Are the bars typically open this early, or just on election days?
  8. Munchester - Take out the "s" and "i" in your second word and consider the family for a gourd, go on a bit or take out a bite, and you'll have it right.
  9. This is the first time I have seen this in either a Japanese or foreign place. I am not keen on trudging back to this place and making scene, but I will give it a a thought. If its happened to me, but presumably happens to others. The local management were not threatening, but took the attitude that since she was caught and not able to take anything nothing happened. That sort of attitude not only rubs against the grain, but creates a perverse incentive for girls to do this. If they caught, nothing happens. If they don't get caught, the come out a thousand or so Baht richer.
  10. Fortunately, this wasn't quite so bad. I don't know if the management was in out it (I suspect not), but they way the responded - totally defensive - says something about Thailand generally and this place specifically. Since the management is more concerned about face than having thieves as employees, its best avoided. The clientele is mostly Japanese and maybe they put up with this stuff. No idea. Perhaps this is the Apple of some Japanese venture in Thailand. But irrespective, this should be shared. We're all in this together, and candid information is our best - our only real - defense.
  11. But for the Minister of Culture opening his mouth, this would have faded away. But now, having fueled the fire, its news in a real newspaper, the New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/31/world/asia/31iht-thai.1.7330826.html?_r=0
  12. Wisdom of the staircase: Wasn't the father of the Minister of Culture - the guy leading this "charge" - against SNL and the YouTube video recently imprisoned to serve out a 25 year murder charge? Didn't the Bangkok Post call him the "Godfather of the East" recently? Or am I thinking of a different Minister of Culture? We can be sure this isn't a case of misdirection where a Thai official is trying distract domestic attention from a tremendously embarrassing local incident by banging on about an alleged slight by Farangs. As we all know quite well, that sort of thing never happens in Thailand.
  13. Gone from Thailand, or totally off the air? Someone outside of Thailand will need to let us know if they can access it. If it was actually pulled, I can see SNL doing a bit about that. What is the Thai government going to do to them?
  14. I think most here are familiar with the massage parlors on that small soi between Soi 24 and 26 (closer to Soi 26). I suspect that naming the place would be frowned upon (think green and what a doctor recommends you eat once a day), but today, while exiting the shower, I caught one the staff with my wallet open and a 1,000 Baht note in her hand. She screamed, dropped the wallet and the bill, and I scooped up both. Let's just say that ruined the moment. Although wet, I was able to dress and get out of the room and downstairs faster than her (Thai women don't dress quickly). I complained to the management, but their response was: "no harm, no foul." In other words, since she hadn't actually been successful in her larceny, I had nothing to complain about. No refund of course, and I didn't press the issue, since there was guy Thai there within about two minutes with his hand in his jacket. No idea what, if anything, he had in his jacked, but figured it wasn't worth finding out. The most annoying part of this is the absolute impunity of the perpetrators. Never had this sort of thing happen there before, but lesson learned.
  15. This will, of course, lead to another video spoofing the Thai government's (or anyone else's) efforts to ban the spoof. That, in turn, will make the SNL spoof more popular. My hunch: the authorities (at least now) are smart enough to realize this won't work, are making this demand to play to a domestic audience. They need to be seen to be doing something, even if what they are doing is futile and likely to backfire.
  16. I heard several complaints about this in the office today from the local staff. I thought it was funny, but didn't say so. One guy was talking about organizing some sort of web campaign against this YouTube Video; said it should be banned. (Hello: that won't stop the rest of the world from accessing it, but I kept quiet and didn't mention this obvious flaw in his plans.) Funny, of all of the things posted and said about Thailand, this one seems to have created the most contention in my office. What is that expression from Shakespeare (which I am about to butcher): "He thinks the lady does't protest too much"?
  17. NEP went through a period of decline while Soi Cowboy improved, but I think, for now, that trend has changed. NEP probably is a bit edgier and will probably remain so, but right now it has more bars and more girls. They also, finally, seem to putting money into fixing the place up a bit. Soi Cowboy is where the both BTS and MRT and Asoke and Sukhumvit meet and I suspect we'll seem more neon and possibly even more upscale venues, but with that more Coyote dancers, higher prices, etc. I notice more Farang women venturing into Soi Cowboy as well (not complaining, just saying), and I suspect that because its more accessible and less intimidating than Soi Cowboy. Different horses for different courses, but for a late night out of carousing I will almost always end at NEP (its also closer to Soi 11). For a tamer experience where I plan to get home reasonably earlier, Soi Cowboy seems to be the better bet.
  18. One more comment: cartels are notoriously unstable because there are strong incentives for individual players to cheat. Once one player cheats, it has a domino effect with other players cheating to compete with lower priced competitors. For a cartel to succeed, there usually must be some mechanism to enforce the cartel's rules. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in reality in the months to come.
  19. I have heard the same about rents in NEP, but not about the cartel. We'll see. For plain old entertainment and good restaurants, I prefer Thonglor and Ekkamai, but I don' t think you are going to find anything close to a go go bar. Perhaps there are freelancers, but I am always very cautious about this in that area.
  20. Is that what its all about? I honestly would not have guessed, but its hard to see how the arab bar business model attracts customers or makes money. But they do look nice and expensive. If that what it is all about, all the more reason not to name bars. If you read my post closely - gee, I have that odd feeling like I said this before - at one least one bar will be obvious.
  21. The bars with the coyote girls were all, I think, arab bars. Plenty of neon and flash, but mai-sanuk. Many were deserted. How does he make money? The vast majority of customers I saw were packed in a few bars, and I am pretty sure the arab doesn't own any of them. Does he just rely on the occasional scam working?
  22. The bar where they did a try on with a padded bill was, I think, an "arab bar". Prefer not to use names. Recall my description recall my description of the bar. The popular bars at the end of the Soi (not arab bars as far as I know) was where I was hit the outrageous sums for a ST.
  23. And although I don't go out much these days, I will weigh in with my opinion. I used to think that Soi Cowboy had exceeded Nana in terms of entertainment value, but after two nights out in a row (a rare event these days), I have to say Nana is far better. Why? In many of the bars of Soi Cowboy the best looking girls simply aren't available. They're coyotes dancers, perhaps available after closing hours, but I am not about to wait until 2- 3 am on an off chance that I might be able to reach them. Plenty of chunky older ones available, but who wants them? I went into a bar, whose name sounds like something you've heard before heard before, and the coyote dancers, mama-san and the handful of presumably available (chubby) girls that were available pestered me to death with drinks demands. And I used the word "demands" intentionally. I bought one drink for myself and one drink for a coyote dancer and, when I left, was hit with a bill just north of 1,000 Baht. I voiced some concern, and they quickly knocked it down to - the still expensive - actual price. A real try-on. But they presumably only do it because they do get away with it sometimes. There are a few bars with attractive girls, but they are jammed pack and every attractive girl I met demanded 2,500-3,000 Baht, upfront, for a short time. But what was far worse, was the attitude of absolute entitlement. Maybe it was a bad night, but that didn't seem like the Soi Cowboy I knew and loved. Nana had plenty of hawkers pestering me to get into bars, but the pressure to buy multiple lady drinks was nothing like Soi Cowboy. It didn't have as many hot looking coyote dancers, but plenty of 7s and 8s were available and willing for far less than the available 3s and 4s of Soi Cowboy. More bars too. And other more upstream entertainment venues available on Soi 11 if you wanted to do more than simply hop in the sack. I have not been on this part of the site for awhile, so perhaps this has already been discussed to death, but thought I would throw my two satang in after my long hiatus.
  24. I have known a few BGs that went off to work in Hong Kong. All of them were 26+. Their English skills were strong, most (probably all) had had Farang boyfriends/sponsors before, but they felt they could no longer compete in Thai bars against younger Thai BGs so they wanted to move on to where there was less competition and their language skills and familiarity with Farang ways were advantage. If they are representative of the Thai girls working in Hong Kong, you'll find older Thai girls in Hong Kong with stronger English skills and more familiarity with Farang "ways".
  25. Seeing this thread continue made me curious (who is Tussinee?), so I read the first few posts and checked the vids (I cannot access her site from Thailand). Perhaps it's because the internet is slow here, but because of the buffering, I had several longish looks at her face before getting bored and moving to another site. Before I saw the exchange of posts on her age, I had concluded she was at least 25 and maybe even 30. She may be small, but she has the skin of a Thai woman in her late 20s. If she really is 18, she has serious skin problems.
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