The Stickman site started as a small hobby website and grew in to site that became iconic. What started as a personal homepage for friends back home to keep up to date with what I was up to in exotic Thailand became something rather larger.
I enjoyed writing about life in Thailand and the site soon developed its own structure with three distinct sections, "Living in Bangkok", "Teaching English in Thailand" and a page I cheekily called "Naughty Nightlife in Thailand". Each section was a lengthy essay on each of these topics, nothing like the full-length articles you find here today. Photos did not come until late 1999 when I picked up my first digital camera, a basic Kodak DC240, 2 megapixels and almost no features. It cost a cool 32,000 Thai baht!
The naughty nightlife section was the most popular part of the site in the early days. I was fascinated by the naughty nightlife, particularly how poor, modestly educated Thai women from rural Thailand made educated, worldly Western men fall in love with them and go on to make some really questionable decisions.
In 2000 the "Travel In Thailand" section was added. Back then it was pretty basic and to be honest, I have not put much time into it.
In 2002 the "Naughty Nightlife" section was removed. I felt awkward about publishing a lengthy article on that subject and would often receive some really bizarre emails from readers who were obviously visiting Thailand for the nightlife. I didn't want to be involved with them in any way, so I removed it.
The first photo gallery was added in 2000 and many followed. Due to bandwidth constraints, I took most of it offline. That has been an unfortunate hallmark of the site over the years, parts go up, and then later get taken down as I reflect on how I have changed and what I am comfortable with.
The turning point in the site's development was the introduction of the Stickman Weekly column, in April of 2001. It was created so I could include news and views that were time sensitive and perhaps only really relevant for a short period of time. Each column was dated so it was obvious if the column was read at a later date that the news and views expressed were not necessarily current. There was so much happening that I wanted to write about, but which wouldn't really fit in to the larger sections of the site that I had to create a new section.
The weekly column became the most popular part of the site.
Not long after the weekly column was born, the readers' submissions section began. Readers contributed their own stories, anecdotes and thoughts on life in Thailand. This section started when I received an email so powerful that I just had to include it in the site. There was nowhere on the site where it quite fit in so I started the readers' submissions section.
Other sections of the site have been added over time, including a section with interviews of Bangkok personalities which was later incorporated into the Stickman Weekly column. In 2006 I started what has now become the most up-to-date and comprehensive listing of free wi-fi internet connections in Thailand although with mobile internet now ubiquitous the wi-fi section is basically redundant.
My life has changed a lot over the years and this has been reflected in the site. I think it's fair to say that in the early days I used to be rather cheap, and the site read like a Cheap Charlie's guide to Bangkok. That's very much because when I first came here I was on a limited budget, didn't know many people and earned around 30,000 baht per month. I had to learn everything myself. Internet resources were scarce and you had to discover stuff for yourself.
I spent a long time studying Thai and reached a high level. That made life more enjoyable and rewarding and helped me to better understand Thai people.
No-one is perfect and mistakes happen. If any information posted anywhere on the site is factually wrong, please let me know with a link to the page and the specific error so it can be amended, edited or removed. Please also note that if you happen to appear in any photos on the site, or anyone you know appears in any photos on the site and you would like the image edited (such as the face burred or distinguishing features blurred out) or removed, drop me an email and I will action that.
In 2014 I announced the site would end in 2015! I wanted a change and I no longer enjoyed running the site. The weekly column is the most popular part of the site and many people see that as chronicling the bar industry. Frankly that has zero appeal for me and I would rather be writing about the best of Thailand – and the bar industry is certainly not the bar industry. I don't want to be running the site any longer and that is why Q1 of 2015 will be the end.