Readers' Submissions

Barkeep

  • Written by Anonymous
  • September 9th, 2004
  • 4 min read


Black Pagoda Patpong Bangkok

By Jazz


Stick, (all Stickman readers cumulatively) so the world is changing? Imagine that! Soi Cowboy will see its last sunset for sure. But so will we. Timing lad, just pure simple timing of it all is what we fret about.

Stick, you’ve forgotten one of the basic tenets of life, no good deed goes unpunished, thus Thai bar girls and many Thais in general, but not all.

I was unhooked up with a straight Thai girl, lovely girl, not much to look at really but then what the heck neither is yours truly. We had known each other for several years during the time she finished up her university work and started her career. I had visited Thailand several times and had really enjoyed her company. There were aspects of her that troubled me some, but then on the other hand, she was the joy, I was the misery.

After about 5 years and her settling into her career it came time to make some decisions and she decided that our age difference was too much. Broke my heart, more than she knew I think. But, folks are folks and life is life. Never was there any talk or even hints about money. She was a good-hearted person who was kind to me in everyway.

I visited Thailand again, with curiosity about how a visit to the Kingdom would come off without this connection. Empty would be the best description. Kanjana had melted my heart and spoiled me before I entered into the bar scene. She was a good person yet just one of the masses of Bangkok. I miss her dearly. May her good merit earn her health and happiness always.

The bar girls will try to run the game on us, sure they do, just as we would probably try to run some down on them. Only thing you can hope for in that game is a tie, because if it isn’t a tie then it’s you who loses, tic-tac-toe and they always get the first move. But so what, you have a fall back position, retreat plan, they don’t, so they nip you for a few baht, so what?

It’s only in our minds, as you have told us time and time again Stick, that anything other than this game is reality or even close to life. If you play with them, do so with the knowledge and understanding that it was you who voluntarily went to Thailand to get something and maybe something for very little. And know that it’s not going to happen!

Barkeep! At your leisure, one for me and one for my mate

Look, Thais didn't just fall off the turnip truck. Neither have they been waiting for our arrival. Life is suffering. We suffer in your world and Thais suffer in their world. If you change someone else’s suffering are you expecting the world to change directions? Will up be down and left be right? If you do then you’re expecting compensation for an act, right? So anticipate that others will act the same as you. They will expect compensation for acts.

I need not tell you Stick about philosophy, in fact after these few well-earned brews, I’m thinking the only theory is the bottom of the mug theory. But putting that one aside for a moment, there is another one that most visitors, and at the end of the day we are all just visitors, seem to forget. It goes something like Act and behave as if your actions will become the laws of nature. (Categorical Imperative forgive my drunken soul – Kant)

You have your agenda and they have theirs. Are we so unsophisticated to suppose that even if we were able to get our agenda ideas across the cultural divide to anyone that the receiver would have even the slightest interest in transforming their beliefs into ours?

Thai people, at times, may not have a clue what we are saying and thinking, and we are equally, and at times quiet a bit more so, clueless about the totality of their experiences. Basic example Buddhism versus Christianity we cannot ever know how to see the world though the eyes of someone who was raised from infancy as a Buddhist and a Buddhist might never be able to study enough to appreciate the Christian outlook and feel for life. Whether one lives either of these outlooks is not the point, but both would have an influence on the core of a person.

People frame the here and now using many different references. Not good ones, not bad ones, not right ones, not wrong one, just many different ones. We are not one big happy family, we all breathe and we occupy a singular tiny plant in the universe, and Stick my friend, that may be the only commonalities.

Bottom line: Eat, drink, be merry, catch the flight home and welcome back as often as you desire to come back. Life is what life is.


Stickman’s thoughts:

Yes.