Brokenman And Silly Tarts In Thailand
I must admit to having had a slight crisis of confidence whilst writing my last couple of submissions and almost didn’t submit them. I felt a little how Monica Lewinsky’s next boyfriend after Bill Clinton must have felt. You know what to do but how on earth do you make it interesting?
However my pals Frugal Phil and Union Hill reminded me that having nothing interesting to say has never stopped me in the past. A sense of perspective was therefore required. At the end of the day my missives are either just field reports on my mongering activities, a record of the rejections I receive from the flower of British womanhood or misogynist rants about the worst excesses of modern feminism. I am not trying to win a Pulitzer Prize or more importantly a Stickman green star submission. So I removed my head from my posterial orifice and submitted them.
One of the great things about writing submissions to Stickman is the subsequent correspondence you have with some wonderful blokes including luminaries of the site, particularly Lookpapa, Cassanudra Marc Holt, Frank Visakay, Hian Baw and Thai Ties to name a few. Even the Sainted Dana has exchanged notes with me on rare occasions.
Now I have (quite rightly) been admonished in the past for being a bit of a name dropper but I must explain why I do this. Some years ago, before I became an old has been I had a few technical papers published in learned journals. I know this is difficult to believe on reading my current output of semi literate ramblings, but they were specialist articles on metallurgical and casting subjects and of no pertinence to this audience. I learnt very quickly that you could get away with a fair degree of plagiarism (or more accurately pinching other people’s research) if you attributed it to them in the text.
It was a chance aside by Lector that prompted my current muse, a throwaway line, when he remarked “I have a fund of stories about the behaviour of farang women whilst in the kingdom but I am keeping them for a session over a few beers”
Some of the strangest and most bizarre behaviour one can ever witness outside of a mental institution (or the UK House of Commons) is exhibited by that most paradoxical of creatures; the western woman in Thailand.
In a previous rambling I described a scene we have all witnessed; the archetypal middle aged western couple sitting in a gogo bar. The man would sit totally enraptured with a smile that if it got any wider his face would fall in half, whilst his beloved would sit scowling with the demeanour of a bulldog chewing a wasp.
The other cliché is the western guy walking with his white lady in Pattaya amidst the bevy of firm breasted dark skinned lovelies. He realises what a big mistake he has made bringing a white woman to Paradise. The comprehension that he is seriously encumbered by his wifely burden amongst this feast of available beauty is almost palpable. He has also recognised that he has no chance of his wife ever allowing him to come alone on a future golfing holiday now she has also witnessed it first hand. The expression on his face says it all…. “Please kill me”.
I believe that there are many contributors in the Stickmanite community who have a tale or two to tell about their own experiences with this weird and wonderful sub species. It is my intention that by presenting a few anecdotes from my own limited experiences it will prompt discussion and a few submissions.
Now there are two ways this enquiry can be conducted. Firstly I could approach it scientifically as an Anthropological study. I could present well researched data as valid evidence for any hypotheses proposed. Or I could as usual just make huge sweeping generalisations in support of my prejudices and in furtherance of obtaining cheap laughs for the amusement of my reader.
It will come as little surprise that I opted for the latter.
The principle issue with western women in Thailand is they are completely out of their environment. As the proverbial fish out of water they generally can not cope with what they observe and exhibit some quite extraordinary behaviour in response.
A fundamental difference between men and women is men live in a world as it is and develop strategies for coping with the situations they encounter
Western women generally inhabit a world how they would like it to be and develop strategies for manipulating the people in situations around them to that end.
It has been suggested (unfairly or not) that with Thai women everything is about money. But with western women this is no longer the case. In the prevailing social environment of the Western world the need to strive for basic economic security has been removed, as far as western women are concerned it is now a given. They are entitled to everything they desire.
With western women everything is about control, it is hardwired in their DNA.
The initial shock and the tipping point
As one contributor sagely observed “The big difference between the East and the West is that in the West she decides if we go home together and in the East I decide." At what point in a visit exactly do the western woman realise the tables are turned?
I think they very quickly realise Pattaya is not the tropical paradise the travel brochures suggested. They soon grasp it is nothing like that utterly banal film “the Beach” and they are unlikely to meet Leonardo De Caprio strolling down Walking Street.
The natural reaction of an English woman to seeing a man happy is to ask “are you enjoying yourself? Well stop it immediately!
But they become conscious that being in Thailand is not like when they are at home or when holidaying in a Mediterranean resort, they are no longer in control. With the ever pervading presence of exotic Thai womanhood, they are not the centre of attention.
The tipping point which really sets their teeth grinding is when they see beautiful young slim feminine Thai girls are not scowling angrily at the elderly gentlemen ogling them, (as they consider they should be), but are actually smiling with them!
The sisterhood shuffle
It is in the gogo bars that western women feel the most threatened and are at their most vulnerable. This is where you witness aberrant behaviour at its most perverse. There are two reactions they exhibit. The older ones sit with a permanent scowl as one friend observed “with a face like a smacked arse”.
She is thinking “my husband is never ever going to get sex again with me for the rest of his life”.
The other reaction usually with younger women is the sisterhood thing. Apparently they and the bargirls are all sisters united together. The urge is to show the Thai girls what 30 years of female liberation has done for western women. They do this by showing they can drink more than men, laugh more loudly and generally behave with less decorum than a Turkish matelot.
You may have yourself seen the spectacle of raucous farangettes standing around the stage forcing tequila slammers or vodka and Red Bull on the bemused bargirls. Then they do their stupid little dance, elbows bent they pump their arms upwards in an alternating action keeping each arm parallel to the other. This continues for exactly 8 seconds then they laugh uproariously, take a pull on their cigarette and a swig from the drink in front of them. In some way this sisterhood shuffle is supposed to express solidarity with their sisters on stage. I am sure many of you have witnessed this curious spectacle on more than one occasion.
Aussie women on the bus
Now I am probably the archetypal English man but everyone knows my great admiration for the men of the Antipodeans. I have never met an Aussie or Kiwi guy in Thailand I did not immediately warm to. I love their no nonsense philosophy on life, their ability to drink and find their wonderful sense of humour is not dissimilar to my own.
But as for the Sheilas, I find them equally as strident and opinionated as the very worst of British womanhood. <Sadly, I have to agree – Stick>
A couple of years ago I found myself travelling with a group of Aussie couples on the bus from Pattaya to Bangkok. The guys were quite happy talking about sensible things like cars, sports and lawnmowers leaving the wives to chat amongst themselves. They however were all trying to outdo each other boasting about previous expensive vacations. When this subject was finally exhausted one lady began expounding on Thai culture and the bargirl scene. She spoke with great authority on how she had made devout friendships with some of these bargirls and had gained a deep understanding of their psyche and lifestyle.
I could have taken this claim seriously had I not seen her doing the sisterhood shuffle the previous evening in Angelwitch on Walking Street.
An Apocryphal tale
I am usually in a bar when I hear it but I have been told the following tale a few times now. It invariably “happened to a friend of a friend”. It concerns a young guy in Phuket who was approached in a disco by a very attractive English girl who was obviously having a hard time with the lack of attention she was receiving in Thailand. She almost threw herself at him and intimated that she and her mate were out to get laid. By her own accounts she and her friend hadn’t been shagged all week.
Surrounded by a few hundred Thai lovelies this chap realised for once he had the advantage. He suggested to the English girl that she was in the wrong place and should try her luck elsewhere. Clearly unaccustomed to ever being refused by an English guy when back home she indignantly enquired what he meant. Warming to the theme he pointed to all the Thai girls around them and continued to tell her how the arrogance of the western female had become increasingly off-putting and that was why most males were now coming to Thailand. At this she threw her arms around him and practically begged him. As a feeling of great power washed over him he pushed her away informing her in no uncertain terms that he was not the slightest bit interested. She stormed off in a great huff. His rationale for this action was females do this to men all the time in the west and it was invigorating for him to be able to enact the same punishment.
The story usually involves a comment about how he could have got her to buy his drinks all evening whilst pretending to be interested and then gone off with someone else at the end of the night which is the standard behaviour of English women on Friday nights!
The story has all the elements of an urban myth as the victim deserves everything that they get. Whilst I love the story for obvious reasons, for some time I have considered it an Apocryphal tale. However the other week I saw it in print on another site, and am happy to report the truth of this wonderful story.
Creating an alternative persona
I am peacefully nursing my beer in a quiet bar on the corner of Soi Diana and Buakaow when a western woman comes into the bar and takes the seat next to me. This lady was quite a stunner, in her early 40s slim and with an eye-catching face framed by an alluring felt hat. I engage her in conversation and quickly established she was Australian.
As the conversation developed she claimed she was a doctor currently employed in A and E at the local hospital. She regaled me with tales of English guys causing most of her problems at the hospital. She also told me her incredible life story.
Fascinating though her tale was I doubted the authenticity of her story. It was not the first time I had encountered people (of both sexes) on holiday who create a fictitious persona in order to make themselves appear interesting or exciting. I appreciate it is difficult for western women in Thailand and the urge to craft a new exotic personality is quite compelling. Implausible as her story was I listened politely and intently as one does in the company of an attractive woman.
Now I accept you may find this quite far-fetched but after an hour or so I got the impression she was actually interested in me. She stated to me that I was clearly a gentleman (why are you all laughing?) and declared I was different from most Englishmen she came into contact with in Pattaya (I admit I was still coherent at 6.00 in the evening, I have no tattoos and still had both my ears). She suggested we move on together to another bar.
I deduced this lovely lady was quite lonely but I know if we were back in the west a woman like her would not have given me the time of day. I also felt a strong sense of déjà vu if not premonition. I had a very strong suspicion that I would be unceremoniously jettisoned if she received a better offer during the evening. So I politely declined much to her annoyance and we went our separate ways. I do appreciate turning down this opportunity was a futile gesture akin to pissing yourself in a dark suit; you get a warm feeling but nobody notices.
Two blondes in Sukhumvit
I spotted two eye-catching English girls staying in the Nana Hotel on my last visit. Why they chose the Nana I have no idea but I imagine they had a few words to say to their travel agent on their return to the people’s republic of London. In their late 30s they were both blonde and very striking. I would see them every afternoon in the Nana pool and they filled their bikinis quite nicely. One had a pretty face and a figure that would not have been out of place on a catwalk. The other one had a far more voluptuous shape and her face was quite gorgeous. I will admit they provided the inspiration for some quiet bouts of onanism in the solitude of my room.
For 3 days although I had absolutely no contact with them I would regularly come across them in the environs of the bars around Nana Tai and that end of Sukhumvit. Attractive though they were they could not illicit the slightest interest of any of the young western guys they encountered. As the days progressed I noticed an increasing desperation in their tactics to gain attention. But invariably come midnight I would see them sitting bored and alone in the lobby of the Nana Hotel which must be the least western lady friendly place on the planet. I almost felt sorry for them.
On the 4th afternoon I took my customary swim in the Nana pool. I had been there less than an hour when the aforementioned blondes entered the pool area and took possession of two recliners next to where I was seated. Being a courteous gentleman I attempted to start a sociable conversation with a friendly smile and an innocuous “Hello there, how are you this lovely afternoon?”
The reaction I received could not have been more dramatic if I had asked to eat their children!
They both stood open mouthed and the expression on their faces eloquently conveyed in an instant, “How DARE you talk to us you unworthy creature!”
With a mere widening of their eyes the message was communicated ”If we were back in England we would have summoned a constable for your impudence to smile at us superior beings when you are not incredibly handsome or considerably younger.”
Without a word they gathered their belongings and moved to the furthest point from me they could. I thought a little friendly human contact would have brightened their day. Evidently it did not.
Barbara in boyztown
A couple of years ago if at a loose end some afternoons would find me in a small friendly bar in one of the less salubrious parts of Pattaya. The bar was owned by two young chaps who I knew through football and was frequented by a group of extremely boisterous but highly engaging young English lads.
That afternoon one of the lads was bemoaning that he had his widowed mother and her aged sister staying with him on holiday for two weeks which was cramping his style somewhat. He announced he was bringing them to the bar the next day and requested everyone be on best behaviour in their presence.
The next day aged relatives duly arrived, to my amusement his mother was only a couple of years older than me and the aged aunt actually a couple of years younger. Me being clearly the eldest patron and allegedly the most sensible they joined me at the bar. Brenda the mother was a pleasant lady naturally only interested in her son. Barbara the aunt had been divorced for a few years and was quite an attractive lady although her stern countenance diminished the appeal somewhat.
I started up a conversation but it was not long before I was realised although she was not too bright had opinions on everything and was not reticent in expressing them irrespective of knowledge. <This is the absolutely worst type of person on the planet as far as I am concerned. The ill-informed moron I call them – Stick> Her unnecessary and tactless comments on West Bromwich Albion did not endear her to the young lads in the bar. Her strident opinions on a variety of subjects, the laziness of the British working man in particular to politics in general soon became wearying, the commentary liberally peppered with the word disgusting.
However her descriptions of how she had to fight off the numerous young men who desired her in town centre bars on Friday nights amused me. I find gratuitous use of the word disgusting by woman of a certain age is usually indicative that her sexual organ has dried up through under use.
The subject moved from the stupidity of men in general, those in Thailand in particular and inexorably to the spectacle of elderly western men with young Thai girls half their age. Predictably I became the focal point of her vitriol. I imagine my reader is well acquainted with the script. We are dirty old sods, sad tossers and degenerates who can not attract a proper woman in England so come to Thailand. Here the girls are poor, naïve, stupid and impressed by our money. But most of all we are disgusting!
I have heard this litany on several occasions so when the inevitable question emerged “Why do blokes like you do it?” I gave her my stock reply as always “If you stopped and listened to yourself you would answer your own question.”
The following day I found myself sitting in Palmers bar in Pattayaland, a quiet bar I occasionally frequent. Although I generally eat Thai when in the kingdom I need now and again to eat farang food. I was just about to put myself outside a plate of ham, egg and chips when I spotted Barbara, my nemesis, walking into Boystown. Without delay or hesitation she entered one of the bars where I am led to believe young Thai men will offer a carnal service to women and gay men similar to that available to straight men in gogo bars. Intrigued I finished my meal and had a couple of beers.
Some 45 minutes later Barbara emerged looking somewhat flushed and unsteady on her feet. I made myself known to her and enquired if she had enjoyed her afternoon. The look she gave me would have put the Gorgon of Greek myth to shame. My remark “What’s sauce for the gander is clearly good for the goose” almost prompted apoplexy. She mouthed a vague obscenity and stormed off.
I certainly did not begrudge her availing herself of the pleasures of a young man’s Hampton but it made her comments of the previous day mere hypocrisy.
I find the perception perplexing that men who come to Thailand are disgusting sex tourists but women who do similar in the Caribbean or the Gambia are merely having romantic interludes.
In one of those quirks of coincidence I recently met Barbara again in unexpected circumstances. I was performing a concert with my Male Voice Choir at a church in a nearby town. During the interval I spotted Barbara talking to a group of prim elderly women. Like the rest of the group she was frumpily dressed in a floral frock much beloved of the church going fraternity but I would still have poked her given the opportunity. I approached her with “Hello Barbara, any adventure holidays planned this year?” Seeing me out of context in a dress suit (tuxedo) and black bow tie she did not immediately recognise me. As my identity began to dawn on her a look of great alarm came to her face. She put her finger to her lips unmistakably requesting my silence and remarked “I am a little busy now; I will chat to you later”.
It will come as no surprise that there was no sign of the good lady when I sought her out after the concert.
I am criticised for my mildly misogynistic views and I often declare I have given up on western women. But that is not to say I have an aversion or hatred for western women per se. I know many beautiful and clever women and count some wonderful ladies amongst my friends. But they are already spoken for and clearly not available to me. They are either married to prosperous men who keep them indulged with material trappings or they are the partners of new age beasts of burden who obey their every whim.
I have always admired and get on famously with the intelligent women who know me. The irony is very attractive women are by and large charming and polite. Beautiful women who have never been said no to since the age of 5 can afford to be courteous and civil. Intelligent women are smart enough to have got the world all worked out in their favour anyway.
It is the women less than averagely attractive or below average intelligence who consider themselves far cleverer than they actually are that I have issues with. They are the ones that believe the insipient feminazi propaganda in the media which encourages their self-centred and dysfunctional behaviour. These are the creatures that are so unnecessarily rude and scathing in their putdowns to men. It is from this catchment that the strange farangettes we see in Thailand are drawn.
However I have only a week or so before I mount the big bird for my November sojourn in the Kingdom. It is only a matter of days before I embark for my biannual despunking. From the tenor of this missive I think you can discern it can not come a day too soon.
It was with a great sadness I hear of the closure of the Big Mango bar which was our natural meeting place. I arrive on Thursday 8th November and that evening should see me in the Golden bar on Nana Tai from 6.00 till 7.30. I will be in the company of my pals Frugal Phil and Union Hill before our customary foray to Soi Cowboy.
You are welcome to join us although If you are a farang lady maybe not.
I really liked your epilogue.
For me, I enjoy the company of Western women in Western countries but find that many Western women in Thailand, whether they are tourists or residents, can get a bit much.
And for sure, a woman with a brain is a must.