Random Musings and Grousing
One of the greatest opportunities for all the farang men living in Thailand, and that comes with no monetary cost, is the chance to observe yourself and how you respond to life in a setting full of potential indulgences not previously available in our
native lands. Having taken up residence in Bangkok and Pattaya for most of the past three years, it is all too obvious how infrequently this introspection takes place. Overwhelmingly I am underwhelmed at the general caliber of farang male now
calling Thailand home. Submissions to Stickman from some of these men documenting their painful dalliances with Thai women only reinforce this image and call to mind what I usually feel when reading about the never-ending saga of the Palestinians
and Israelis: By and large, they deserve each other.
As is the case with most complex social interactions, there is ample blame to be apportioned to both sides of the bargain. (Although 'bargirl' and 'bargain' both begin with the same four letters, do not confuse the two.) Although few of the young Thai women who appear angelic to innocent farang eyes are what they appear to be, many of the farang men fall precisely into the 'what-you-see-is-what-you-get' category. Dirty, unshaven men who overindulge their bodies (elbows and genitals mostly) and under indulge their minds.
Most of these men, grateful for the libertine and tolerant Thai attitudes, in turn have little genuine interest in learning and attempting to understand the local culture. A surprisingly large proportion of these long-term farang residents have never ventured outside the playpens of Pattaya, Bangkok and similar ilk. They bring all their bad habits to Thailand and are reluctant to ever modify them; particularly their homophobia and their disdain for sellers of sexual services. This in no way stops them from engaging the bargirls and the katoeys at the same time pretending to be existing on a different moral plane than the purveyors of such services. Some of these men I do like and enjoy their company whereas others would improve the planet by their departure.
They have no interest in seeing the villages where these people grew up. Nor interest in the least that in many developing countries, it is incumbent on the children to provide for their aging parents. The prevalent farang attitude is to keep their money in their pants while simultaneously desiring that "John Thomas" not stay in their pants.
Having said this, I will add that these years in Thailand have undoubtedly been my most enjoyable time spent on our little blue-green planet. I am genuinely grateful to have experienced a culture that I feel is much more prone to enjoying life than the cultures of western countries. Random observations and memories include nuggets such as (a nugget may be golden or it may be the product of a passage south of the anal sphincter) :
'Farang' is not a derogatory word and the locals are not out to get you. But farangs do have the lions share of the money and in the nascent lands of Southeast Asia, money talks VERY LOUDLY. Famous bank robber Willie Sutton apocryphally claimed to rob banks because 'that's where the money is'. (Yes farang, you are a walking ATM.) My Thai girlfriend is quite reticent about making new Thai friends as eventually it means they will hit her up for a 'loan'.
The opportunity for me to engage with women who would not give me the time of day in western lands is full of incredible value to me.
I do not have to sexually avail myself of a person to enjoy their immense beauty and company and sense of humour. But that that possibility might genuinely exist certainly adds a definite allure.
Rarely a day goes by, even after years in Thailand, that I am not struck dumb at the visual splendour of many Thai women.
I thoroughly enjoy a beautiful smile regardless of any ulterior motives lurking behind the smile.
The opportunity to live in a culture where people are comfortable touching each other is never lost on me. A decent Thai massage, with no sexual antics at all, would be a very erotic experience in the USA.
Periodically I have to remind myself that people living a hand-to-mouth existence in what I see as poverty are not necessarily discontent or unhappy. Many of the Thai people have never known any life other than hand-to-mouth. Provide them with more money today and it will be immediately squandered.
As my angelic and troublesome Si Saket lady told me during the financial meltdown of 2008, when people in Bangkok lose money in the financial markets, they throw themselves out of a window. But the rice farmer in Isaan is happy if he has enough rice to eat today.
This 41 kg woman is one of many small Thai women I've witnessed who never seem to stop eating. Many farangs here and back home may be obese, but Thais may be even more obsessed with food. What they eat just doesn't necessarily show on their bodies.
The old adage that 'what first attracts us to a person is what we eventually try to change' is very apt in Thailand. The childlike attitude of live for today is wonderful when spending a vacation with a Thai lady. Trying to have a long-term relationship with those kinds of attitudes is another thing. In western countries, it is not all that difficult to distance yourself from your spouse's family. In Thailand it isn't so easy.
Living here does nothing but damage to my capability to be articulate and make use of the richness of the English vocabulary. Were I not the typical lazy English speaker, I'd make a more concentrated (kem Khon) effort to learn the Thai language. jing-fucking-jing.
Regardless of how many decades I spend living here, there is a plethora (shitload) of goings-on I'll never understand. Viva la difference.
I moved to Pattaya to 'crawl in the gutter' for an extended time and wouldn't trade the experience for anything. But enough is enough.