The Broken Man Obsesses
Do you ever get an epiphany, a blinding flash of perception where you see things with a mind-blowing clarity and you suddenly understand the meaning of life and everything?
No? Neither have I, but I have often woke up with a grim realisation of what a sad old tosser I have become. What began, as an innocent curiosity about Thailand has become an unhealthy obsession of monumental proportions.
My body may live in West Bromwich but my mind and spirit has taken permanent residence on the Suhkumvit road.
I switch on my computer to access my email and 8 out of 10 of the daily items of correspondence are from Thailand. Of the 8 Internet sites bookmarked as my favourites, 6 are Thailand related and the only dating site I subscribe to now is Thailovelinks. My freezer is full of Thai and Chinese food and a bottle of Nam Pla is the most used condiment in the kitchen. My bookcase contains the writings of Stephen Leather, Jake Needham John Burdett and Christopher Moore.
I check the Stickman site every day, read most of the submissions and have contributed a few modest ramblings myself. I have exchanged correspondence with a number of fellow Stickmanites who are excellent chaps.
Thailand (and those enchanting Thai women) is the only topic of conversation that commands my attention or interests me. Old friends shun my company and dogs avoid me in the street.
I have become a Bangkok bore.
My photo album is full of snapshots of Thai girls, most of them wearing West Bromwich Albion football shirts (in the small youths size). I acknowledge my thing with getting Thai girls to wear an Albion shirt is without doubt a fixation alone deserving of a few sessions on the psychiatrist’s couch if not the employment of a strait jacket. On the other hand showing my photos to fellow baggie fans in the Smethwick end on chilly February match days does much to raise the spirits.
The genesis of my addiction with Thailand was over six years ago when my pal
Phillip was on one of his rare sojourns to the UK for his daughters wedding. Philip is an Asia man of 30 years standing, the veteran of two Thai wives (plus an English one) and renowned of late for winning Stickman’s “Where was this photo taken competition” with alarming frequency. It is also reputed that if he misses a week in the Dollhouse he is required to submit a doctor’s certificate on a subsequent visit.
On that visit his amusing tales of the Bangkok nightlife failed to illicit the slightest interest in me. I was not unacquainted with strip joints, lap dancing clubs and houses of ill repute. As a seasoned business traveller I had experienced the European model in Amsterdam and Hamburg and when working in the USA had frequented the excellent “Windsor Ballet” in Ontario across the river from Detroit.
At that time I was still a fully brainwashed married man, the classic “beast of burden” so perceptively described by Casmeri. I was totally devoid of any personal desires and entirely occupied with attempting to satisfy the infinite and capricious whims of a voracious wife and family.
However on a subsequent visit by Phillip a year or so later, things had changed for me. My wife had left me, my divorce was pending and I was an emotionally mutilated wreck. The numerous and often unnecessarily cruel rejections I subsequently suffered from English women had destroyed my self-esteem. Phillip recognising my situation from years of observed experience strongly suggested I abandon my futile pursuit of English women and pay a visit to LOS, but I remained unconvinced.
Ironically it was an archetypal liberated western woman who finally convinced me to make my first trip to Thailand. Phil’s daughter once worked for me; joining me as a school leaver I mentored her through college and a technical apprenticeship to eventual qualification as a Metallurgist. She achieved acclaim in the hairy arsed world of the casting industry and currently holds a senior troubleshooting position with a major European carmaker. She is the classic product of 30 years of feminism, she is intelligent confident and assertive. At face value all the credentials of someone whom sex tourism would be a complete anathema. However with first hand knowledge of Thailand she had an informed and balanced view of all it entails. At the time we were good friends, she recognised my predicament and strongly recommended me to heed her father’s sound advice and take the trip to Thailand with all good speed.
I made my first visit to LOS in November 2003, which restored my spirit and probably saved my sanity. The events of that first visit I documented in my first submission to Stickman entitled “The broken man is repaired”. It also began my compulsion with the Thailand scene and I made five visits in the subsequent three years. A sex tourist was born.
Christopher Moore refers to the infatuation with the Suhkumvit bar scene as the “Sickness” but I fear this fails to fully explain my malady. Korski’s contention that it is a clinic condition better augments the explanation. Contracting an acute and incurable strain of Jasmine fever is another plausible description of my condition.
To an optimist this obsession could be called a mere fascination. My two sons and their pals are quite amused by my antics and feel my tales are considerably more entertaining than most of the boring old farts they have to listen to. My boys are young men now but they fully expect their future stepmother will be a Thai girl younger than themselves.
Most of my middle class, middle aged, middle England, friends however feel I have taken leave of my senses. They consider me a pervert. I try to explain to them but I know they would need to see it first hand to understand.
The difference between a pervert and a sensualist is a visit to Thailand.
The difficulty arises when the single source of sexual activity is a twice-yearly visit to LOS. This situation is analogous to attempting to eat all the meals of the day, breakfast lunch dinner and supper in one single sitting. You quickly become conscious the spirit is willing but the flesh is at times found wanting, a situation that can only get worse with the march of time.
Thank heavens for Mr Pfizer and the products of the pharmaceutical industry.
It is the classic feast and famine syndrome because in between these visits to the land of vertical smiles I have to endure months of celibacy whilst living in England. In fact I have not had carnal knowledge of a white woman for almost four years. I spend many an onanistic evening in the lonely canton of Wanking.
Thank heavens for the left-handed mouse on my computer.
What is more disturbing to me is that my Siamese sojourns are the only source of female affection and attention I receive. Which is quite sad when you consider I live on an overcrowded island with 60 million inhabitants. But I feel I have as much chance of finding a loving partner and soul mate in the UK as I have of getting a star submission from Stickman.
I should qualify this statement. I do have a number of female friends, they are clever, cultured, and a couple are really good mates but they are mostly older than me. My experience with the daughters of Issan has spoilt me. Of the 20 or so Thai girls I have enjoyed, not one has been older than 36. The thought of sexual intimacy with 60-year-old western women fails to excite. I do not feel in the least inclined to be the one to blow their cobwebs away.
Casanundra sagely observed that throughout history as a man grows older he needs a younger woman to revitalise his libido. There is a long tradition in many cultures and societies of men in mid life crisis acquiring a younger model. Even in the west not so many years ago, it was quite common for men in their 50s to be able to attract women 15 years their junior.
But in today’s western society a 50 year old man is invisible to western women younger than 40 unless he has obscene wealth. From my observations 30 years of female emancipation has merely resulted in women using their acquired freedom to sneer at men, binge drink like blokes and vomit in the street. The all pervading L’Oreal “because your worth it” culture of entitlement has also precluded the 35-45 year old women traditionally attracted to men in their senior years. They are no longer available to us as they are preoccupied with wresting money from their current beast of burden or fooling themselves they are still attractive to 19-year-old youths.
Money remains an important dimension; it determines your options and affects your choices. I have been a penniless old fart of late, I lost my house in the divorce, my wife’s accumulated debt soaked up any investments I had and the barrow boys in the City of London robbed my pension scheme. Although I have always had a good career, of late my resources have been limited, which restricts ones choice. You need considerable wherewithal to attract younger western women or to bring a Thai girl over to the west. Without it you are left with old women, invariably older women that other men have already had the best years of and invariably left embittered. Not an appealing prospect I am sure you agree.
Thank heavens for the products of the brewery industry and its anaesthetic properties.
Reading Chiang Mai Kelly’s excellent and disarmingly candid missive about his days as a pimp and a gigolo caused me to reflect on the times I have also considered this route. The idea of catching a rich old widow to indulge me is persuasive, but at 50 I probably lack the bait to hook one and would doubtless fail the medical.
Nevertheless the notion of being a kept man is not easily dismissed. With the paradigm change in western society, many older women now own property in their own right (or courtesy of a previous husband). However this option is not without difficulties if you have to contend with her offspring. You can encounter real hostility if they perceive you are after the inheritance particularly if the offspring is female. You can usually get friendly with her sons especially if you can talk with some authority on beer football or cars. The major downside with any western woman over 40 is her strident opinions and limitless requirements, which result in you generally having to jump through hoops, dig their garden and act as an unpaid tradesman and janitor to their property. Attempting to satisfy the infinite whims of a woman is bad enough when you were in your 30s and your wife was still attractive to you but we are talking here about prune faces and the overpowering smell of liniment and lavender water.
I remember a few years ago being intimate with one divorced woman at her house. I had hardly disengaged it from her and she asked me “have you got a power drill?” It really can be most disconcerting.
I am being facetious but I have heard it suggested that Viagra is such a success in the west not because men cannot get it up per se but because western women are so fat and ugly. I cannot hold with this as I would hate be considered a misogynist! (Why are you laughing?)
Thank heavens for Thailand or at least the little bit of it I know.
In Thailand the old values remain or at least appear to. Asian women and women from developing countries in general, instinctively recognise and understand the implications of a man’s midlife crisis.
I had always been sceptical of the view that young Thai women prefer ageing western men to young Thai men. I have never fully accepted the premise because it implies that there is some genetic disorder in Thai girls that somehow makes ugly old fat western men attractive to them. I acknowledge the principle motivation of these girls is to rise out of poverty or improve their lot in life. I have however begun to modify my views slightly and suspect some Thai women do have a real interest in middle-aged western men that extends beyond the economic imperative alone.
Chiang Mai Kelly explained his views that young men are at a disadvantage because they don’t have the experience of marriage we veterans have and fail to understand it is short lived and only lasts 7 years on average. Thai girls however intuitively understand this and see benefit in avoiding younger men and the associated anguish and actively seek middle-aged men.
Frank Visakay observed that although Thai girls generally don’t get past grade school they are still smarter than western women when it comes to attracting men, they tell you what you want to hear, it sounds good so you believe it.
Western women on the other hand have no interest whatsoever in what you want but they will tell you what they want at every opportunity and in no uncertain terms. I am sure many will agree the perception that they are entitled to have everything they desire is extremely tiresome. That they consider this entitlement requires no effort on their part is particularly exasperating.
Western women have unfortunately lost the plot.
In previous submissions I have discussed the horrors, anguish and futility of Internet dating in the west. Their unrealistic aspirations and very specific and exacting expectations defy belief. Even a token perusal of the profiles submitted by the majority of women on dating sites evokes despair. I will forever remember one, which I feel, epitomises my point, which read, “All I want is to be treated as I think I deserve to be!”
Imagine trying to please her!
I call this the “Louis Lane syndrome” after the girlfriend of Superman. Her boyfriend is a superhero, the ultimate physical specimen with superhuman powers. He is also sensitive and selfless. He habitually saves the world before breakfast. But she is still not satisfied, as he doesn’t always give her his full attention she feels she is entitled to. Mind you would you trust a guy who wears his underpants over his trousers?
Like the other 10 million or so western guys of my ilk who visit the kingdom every year I am seeking a girl like the wonderful Ploen who Stickman so appetisingly described in a recent weekly column. Realistically men who only visit a few weeks every year do not have access to these delightful ordinary Thai girls. The time constraints of a vacation limit the development of a meaningful relationship with “nice” Thai girls who allegedly will not even kiss you until they have known you 6 months. I also believe you need a circle of Thai friends to affect introductions to these illusive creatures. The Suhkumvit and Pattaya scene provides too easy an option for men in my condition within the time constraint.
There is however always the Internet.
I have dipped my toe in the water of Thai Internet dating for a few months and although my experience is still somewhat limited, it has been enlightening. I was inspired to examine this medium by the essays of Stadler and Waldorf. He appears to enjoy great success particularly with the ordinary girls that occasional visitors like myself would never have access to. Once you accept his unashamed hedonism he is a very perceptive and gifted writer. His eloquence is all the more amazing as English is not his native tongue. He is probably the definitive authority on chat lines in Thailand.
Within a week of posting my profile on a leading Thai dating site I received 23 hits! I once subscribed to three UK dating sites and it took me 18 months before I achieved 10 contacts.
I have now exchanged correspondence with almost 40 Thai girls. My observation is the non-bar Thai girls below 25 have similar attitudes to western youngsters. They are equally as shallow and vacuous, they know they are in demand and feel their fannies are lined with gold. To quote my sons “they have their head up their own arse”. This is normal behaviour expected of young adults and is understandable and acceptable particularly when one considers this adolescent narcistic behaviour extends up to the age of 45 with western women.
Many of the older Thai ladies in the 30-45-age bracket I have met on the site are fascinating creatures. Those who live in Bangkok are generally better educated and appear more sophisticated. Outside the capital the women are charming but less urbane. The posted profiles and notes received are often “I want to your friend” and “I good woman not game”. The most delightful girls are from Surin and Burinam and I am currently besotted with a teacher from Ubon Ratchathani. The Northern Issan cities of Khon Kaen, Udon Thani and the province of Nong bua lamphu appear to have an endless supply of heart stoppingly beautiful women. I have had entertaining and sometimes surreal interchanges with some lovely girls across a spectrum of age, vocation and standards of education. Some of the conversations I have on MSN are enthralling but occasionally appear to be as if we are having two disparate dialogues on parallel lines that will never meet until infinity. You could lose your heart to these wholesome country lasses as easily as some guys do with bargirls because they are ostensibly from similar backgrounds. These exchanges are enchanting and I have made a few friendships but they are almost certainly futile as I am unlikely to travel much outside Bangkok or Pattaya on my next visit. I suspect I will only visit Issan when my future (as yet unmet) bride drags me up there to pay the sin sot to her grasping parents.
In the past few months I have developed friendships with three very bright career minded independent girls from Bangkok and four educated girls from the provinces. They are all as bright and switched on as any western woman and considerably less conceited. I exchange some rational and sometimes bewildering correspondence on a weekly basis with them. They are all in their late 30s/early 40s and genuinely do not see my age as an issue. In fact they express surprise that I am conversing with them rather than with younger girls. My motivation is maybe on my next visit a civilised dinner date with one or two of them would make a pleasant change from spending my time exclusively with bargirls. Even if the relationship remains platonic and unconsummated.
I could be in danger of having my mongers certificate revoked.
I have read Dana’s recent thought provoking treatise on wasting the time of decent Thai girls and his perceived ethical dilemma. Whilst I acknowledge his premise and can accept his views, I have sufficient respect for human dignity to never wittingly hurt another human being and as such reserve the right to use my own judgement in this issue. It is not inconceivable that a connection made with an ordinary Thai lady could result in a successful relationship of mutual benefit. I will certainly exercise discretion but I am reluctant to totally preclude ordinary decent Thai women from my options.
Although I accept my experience is limited I sense there is a blurring of the distinction between bargirls and some ordinary girls at times. There appears an expectation that the farang should give them money even if the girl is not a professional. I suspect the idea generally comes from her workmates who may entertain misconceptions of farang from half formed anecdotal evidence. Peer pressure is a potent force with women in any walk of life anywhere on the planet.
Two years ago I met a delightful girl at the Thermae who during the week worked as a receptionist in one of the international hospitals. She was the very epitome of coyness and respectability in the week but the last Friday of the month saw her sleeping with western guys in order to pay the shortfall in her rent. She saw no incongruity with this.
In June 2005 I spent some of my months vacation with a 25-year-old bona fide ordinary Thai girl who was a relative of an old friend. She worked in an office in Prapadang and joined me at weekends. She had never worked in a bar and I believe I was the only farang she had been with but her expectation was I should give her a “gift” of money every few days. This was in addition to the meals, clothes and little presents I was perpetually buying her (and she still called me Keeneow). Again she saw no problem with her actions and would have been grossly insulted if I suggested she was no better than a bargirl accepting money for sex.
My only suggestion to determine if a girl is an ordinary girl or a bargirl is that bargirls tend to shave or trim their mudgeons whereas office girls are apt to remain hirsute. Which I agree is not a lot of help whilst you are in Starbucks.
I believe tourism in Thailand will face some difficulties over the next few years. The Thai government seems hell-bent on discouraging sex tourism but the security scares in western airports will dissuade many of the “quality” tourists they hope will replace us. The perception of greed and price inflation in Bangkok along with reports of attacks on westerners in Pattaya will reduce the attractiveness of Thailand as a holiday destination.
But we mongers are made of sterner stuff and I suspect will continue to arrive undaunted and undeterred. Thailand is still excellent value. To procure a woman in the UK of the quality you can obtain in Pattaya for 2000 baht long time would cost you the airfare from London to Bangkok. Nowhere in the world is there such a seemingly endless supply of absolutely divine creatures as the ladies of the Issan.
Aged 50 I am acutely aware of tempus fugit, the prevailing issue is the march of time. I am conscious of wasting precious time living in the UK. Every moment not spent in the kingdom in the arms of a soft skinned beauty is valuable time lost.
I made a few serious attempts last year to find a job in Thailand but my efforts were unsuccessful. I was initially disappointed; I am a professionally qualified engineer, and an educated manager with global experience. I have some fairly exclusive skills related to the manufacture of high integrity castings, I have taught a variety of operations management subjects’ part time at my local college and have a proven track record for people development. Transferable skills I imagined would be in demand in a developing country but apparently skills not needed in Thailand, mai pen rai.
I am also aware of the difficulties living in the kingdom presents. I am guided by my pal Union Hill in this matter. In one submission he defined the demands and sacrifices necessary to live and work in Thailand, he makes a persuasive case for only doing so if you have an exceptionally strong constitution, are prepared to abandon your integrity and morals and are slightly mad.
There is one remaining alternative, which is to take a Thai girl back to the west. This is not without its problems. I envisage you need considerable resources to take care of everything, as they are unlikely to be capable of earning a living in the west, at least initially. You have the ubiquitous problem of Asian girls very quickly adopting the less salubrious values of the west and probably leaving you if a better offer comes along.
But once you are smitten with Jasmine fever an Asian girl it has to be.
I have always loved Stick’s metaphor about women and cars. A young Thai woman is like a Masseratti or a Ferrari; aesthetic lines beautiful to behold, an exhilarating ride but difficult to handle in inclement conditions and expensive to maintain.
Sticks contention is for everyday use you need something more practical and reliable.
I have a notion that to minimise the risk of unfaithfulness and other associated problems I should develop a relationship with an intelligent Thai lady in her early 40s rather than a younger model. A slightly older Thai girl would be like a second hand Jaguar, still good to look at, a more comfortable ride, a lot more practical and maybe easier to handle. You can probably leave a Jaguar out in the street without it getting stolen.
On the odd occasion you may need a vehicle that is even more robust and appropriate for heavy lifting. However in those hopefully rare circumstances you would simply borrow your friends Toyota pickup. These occasions are best avoided. I have learnt that the secret of a long and happy life is; never lift anything heavier than a ladies petticoat, never live further north than Wolverhampton and if you must move your piano wait until your friends come around to help you.
I am beginning to dig myself out from my difficulties of the last few years and at last can see a significant improvement in my financial situation and prospects. I know I will have to stop prevaricating soon and do something. I acknowledge I was once very indecisive but now I am just not so sure.
However I do have a bit of a let out. Around the time of my divorce I consulted a psychic who told me from my “aura” that I was unlucky with women (she could have ascertained this merely from a glance at my ugly mug). Nonetheless she was emphatic I would find a new love who would come from a distant land (good call), who would make me deliriously happy but it would not be for another 5 or 6 years. She also jokingly (I assume?) informed me I would meet my demise in bed with two women! Which is the reason I have avoided what Union Hill refers to as the Siamese waltz on my visits to the kingdom.
With only a couple of years to go by her schedule before I settle down, I should give careful thought to how I should spend it productively. I could spend it saving my money carefully husbanding my resources, generally improving myself and doing good works? No I think not!
The decision is made, another couple of year’s whoremonging in Suhkumvit and Pattaya before I hold my metaphorical bat in the air and declare.
What is the point of a good obsession if you cannot indulge it?
No time for me to comment on the long submissions at this point in time, sorry!