Stickman's Weekly Column March 31st, 2002

The Fast Forward Button



So, you've made your mind up. As much as you enjoyed your time with the pay for play girls, you have finally realised that in most cases, there is little chance of a real future between you and her, and you have thus decided to pursue something with a regular girl.

So, you go out hunting for regular girls and with millions of available, attractive and approachable (YES! – they are) Thai girls out there, you surprise yourself with the speed with which you meet someone nice. You invite her out to dinner and catch a movie later on that evening. At the end of the movie, you get a bit of a surprise when she asks you where you live, and when she says that she would like to see your apartment. That sudden jolt of excitement at the thought that you are going to get laid tonight with this heavenly creature subsides as quickly as it arrived as you realise that she is a good girl, and that she probably really does just want to see your apartment and all of those photographs you told her all about.

Arriving back at your apartment, her interest in your photographs is little more than a passing glance, even though she had just told you outside the cinema how much she loved photography. She spots your liquor cabinet, fixes a couple of Jake Cokes and heads straight into your bedroom. One thing leads to another and before you know it, you are both climbing the stairway to heaven.

What has just happened has gone against just about everything that you have ever understood about Thai girls. You've always believed that Thai girls do not drop their knickers in the first month, let alone the first date. In fact you believed that many wait a long, long time, possibly even until their wedding day.

Of course there will always be some girls who like nothing more than a good roll in the hay, life between the sheets being absolutely their favourite activity. While the number of such bad girls in Thailand is forever growing, they still make up a fairly small minority. And this girl was not even that big on sex. So just why did she do it?

The very real danger with regular Thai girls is that they have this "magical fast forward button" that they selectively use to accelerate the relationship to the point of "going steady", even though you may not quite view the relationship as having reached that point yet. Yep, while for you this girl may be little more than someone who you were curious about – and if something happened in bed, then it would be seen as a bit of fun and no more, for the girl her feelings will likely be quite different. She dropped her knickers because she saw you as a potential mate, a potential boyfriend and possibly something more. She wanted to reserve you, and reserve you quickly, before someone else spotted you and jumped the queue. As far as she is concerned, the two of you are now girlfriend boyfriend, all of the courting process being completely eliminated, notwithstanding that this was your first date!

It goes without saying that this can lead to all sorts of problems. Any comment or even inference that the two of you are not couple will likely result in a very negative reaction on her part ranging from waterworks to violence. Suddenly you have got yourself into all sorts of problems with a girl who just a few hours ago you don't even know!

If you jump into bed with a regular Thai girl early on in the relationship, notwithstanding that you really do not know each other that well, she will likely consider you to be her boyfriend, even though you may have just viewed her as a conquest, just another girl. If she drops her knickers, she presses the fast forward button. Things can suddenly get sticky, as the two of you have quite different ideas about where you stand. She sees you as her girlfriend yet you see her as a girl you have known for a short period of time, who just happened to put out on the first night.

So, if you want a quick fix, beware that while it is possible with regular girls, you may get yourself into hot water. Don't be surprised that it is not just the bargirls who have the propensity to go a little crazy at times. With regular girls, beware of the fast forward button!

Last week's where is this pic was taken from Lumpini Park, looking towards Wireless Road and the building featured in the background is the new All Seasons Tower. Sarasin was the only person to get the answer spot on.

Where is this pic?

Clue: Smoky diamonds!

It is absolutely nowhere near Sukumvit Road.

I am pleased to announce that every week, for the next twenty weeks (and maybe even beyond that?) there will be a prize for the FIRST PERSON TO EMAIL ME the answer to the where is this pic picture. With this in mind, the pics will be a little more difficult and I would like a fairly precise answer. E.g. Sukumvit Road would be inadequate but Sukumvit Road Nana intersection would suffice. The prize will be a wonderful 2002 calendar featuring the pictures of many beautiful Thai ladies. To check out the prize, jump on over to ThaiTemptations.com who have very kindly donated the prizes. You must collect the prize in Bangkok within three months and I will advise winners by email about how you can collect it.

Australia is a sex tourism destination!

I live in Melbourne Australia where prostitution was legalised 15 years ago. It would be rather difficult for any government of a Western country to legalise the oldest profession because of the moral christian majorities concern at the decay of social order. However the government of the day was not particularly conservative and besides legalised prostitution increases tax revenue which is always healthy for the governments books as well as the girls health.

With Thailand's lack of concern for individuals welfare (particularly BGs welfare) I cannot for a moment foresee the possibility of legalised prostitution in Thailand. That coupled with the fact that Thai politicians never seem to do anything that is not directly in their own interest means that prostitution in Thailand will always remain a tricky business.

Australia however with it's legalised sex industry, is a very safe playground for the suppliers and consumers of sex. The obvious reasons for legalisation have proved to be worth the exercise of legalising the industry. The women must pass a monthly STD check and provide a doctors certificate as proof. The women must not be dependent on drugs of any kind and the parlours have to pass strict health inspections. On the reverse side, the competition between parlours ensures girls have good working conditions and a good working environment. All parlours have security precautions for the Saturday night drunks and the girls can turn any client away if they wish.

Legalised prostitution has not turned Melbourne men into promiscuous sex addicts, nor has it decayed the moral fabric of society. AND legalised prostitution is contributing a tidy amount to the government's tax revenues. In my opinion it's a win win situation but I think the conservative catholic church may have another opinion.

Fast and cheap local net access.
Click TA costs me 250 Baht per month, provides unlimited usage, but it cuts off after 2 hours and then you have to pay another 3 Baht in telephone charges to connect again.
Connections and speeds are very reliable on Click TA, but I probably connect 4-5 times per day so it costs me another 450 Baht per month in telephone charges alone thus, a total of about 700 Baht per month.

With Samart I might connect only twice per day so I should be spending about 180 Baht on phone calls thus, a total of about 500 Baht per month.

Not much different really in cost, but at least on Samart I wouldn't be cut off every 2 hours like I do on Click-TA and sometimes in the middle of a download.

A useful tip.
When I check into a hotel, the first thing I do is place the contents of the mini bar into a plastic bag and carry it down to the reception desk. I hand it to them and say, "Thank you very much, but I will be doing my own shopping and need to make space in the refrigerator." They love this! Well, not really, but fuck 'em! I save a bundle on booze and groceries and avoid the worry of being charged for things I didn't use (It's happened to me before). Then, I do go shopping, stocking up on all the supplies I think I'll need, plus a few things for the girls I'll have visiting.
These girls have sharp memories.
After causally mentioning that we would probably return to LOS in April or May this year, it was amusing to note the inbox suddenly fill up with mail from loving and remembering girls who frankly I'd forgotten about. Good memories or a wonderful Filofax system?
Are they all bad girls?
I think you're on the money regarding bar-girls vs. nice girls. I had a rich Thai friend and he said something to me I will never forget as long as I stay in Thailand : "If you are looking for a Thai girl <meaning a partner> you must never forget, Thai women look for security." Now of course that rings true of all women everywhere, but that word "security" has a much deeper meaning here in Thailand. Regardless of whether they come from a rich or poor family, regardless of whether they are bar-girls or nice girls, Thai women have one very powerful common denominator running through their blood 24 hours per day – Thai culture. Nothing is more powerful than one's culture, and Thai culture sticks like mud to any Thai woman, meaning "security" is their utmost concern. It is the very reason poor Isaan girls and respected university girls go into prostitution, and it's one of the checklist items on a non-hooker Thai girl's list also.

I must admit, although I've only been here for 14 months, the "worst" stories I've heard from guys who have been cleaned out financially or cheated on, have been guys who have had "nice Thai girls", and it's these nice girls who have done it to them in a merciless fashion.

Thailand is full of very very beautiful women as you say. But I'll never forget something I learnt back home – some women are beautiful on the outside, but ugly on the inside, and Thailand is also home to these kinds of ugly women.

It's time to go to the beach…this heat really is too much!

They might be topless at Nana but their knickers are still well and truly on. Who knows when they'll drop their knickers? A mile down the road at Cowboy and also over at Patpong you can still see girls in the buff.

Rumour has it that David Walls, owner of the Crown Group, is back in town after his sojourn over to the Americas. And the word is out that he is not a happy chap, somewhat miffed at the way his stand-in handled certain situations in his absence. Perhaps he was expecting to see a bank balance of $X upon his return, which would have been used to help finance his recent trip, but upon his return he only found $X – 50%?

Suzy Wong in Soi Cowboy has closed its doors again after being open for just a few short weeks. Just what is happening down there? Well it seems that when Juke's Bar was closed down by the boys in brown for 30 days, the management simply got all of the girls from that bar and took them over to Suzy Wong where they worked for the period that Juke's was ordered closed. When the closure order had finished, they all went straight back over to Jukes! Ahhh, the benefits for a bar owner in owning more than one property! So, this means that Suzy Wong is still for sale…could it be the opportunity for someone to come on into Cowboy and open a new bar, with Cowboy appearing to represent a far better investment than it did just 18 months ago.

Why is it that the only place to find nude girls in The Dollhouse Soi Cowboy branch is upstairs? Well, the answer is fairly simply – think about it!

If Red Lips is not the most miserable excuse for a gogo bar in Bangkok, then where is? Miserable girls who are hardly easy on the eye along with faulty air-conditioning and surly waiting staff make this without a doubt the worst gogo bar I have been into in a long, long time, if not ever. With the 110 baht prices for drinks, this bar is worth avoiding, quite frankly.

The BTS used to be both the fastest and most comfortable way to travel around the parts of the city that it reaches, but for now it can only lay claim to being the fastest. As it becomes more and more popular, at peak times it is getting absolutely jam packed and getting on or off is becoming a real hassle. In fact this week at Siam Square station, there were huge numbers of people who were simply unable to get on to the train, and then had to wait for the next train to come. Such congestion I have only previously seen at More Shit Station, not at Siam. Isn't it about time that they put an extra carriage on the trains at peak times?

If you want to see an odd little bar that offers something a little different, check out Madam Claude's in Sukumvit soi 33. The interior is done out with almost everything in white and it is run by a Thai woman who apparently worked as a madam in Paris for many years. Its an odd place that has been open for several months and it is well worth checking out for it is something a little different with very personal service offered by the small number of friendly, attractive girls there.

I heard a rumour that The Nation newspaper will be changing their printing process soon which will, with a bit of luck, result in an easier read. When (if?) this takes place, will the Post's sales start to slump on all days except for Wednesday and Friday (the days with Database, the computer section, and Real Time with good old Trink's column on a Friday). I note that in recent times, a lot more locally based expats seem to be reading The Nation, no doubt in no small part as it is the one English language publication that has stood up against the government on several issues, not just the issue of freedom of the press.

And on the subject of newspapers, the Pattaya Mail has over the past few months become very lean… It used to be the place to read about all of the crime that was going on down there, to find out just which farangs had been the victims or the perpetrators of crimes. There were stories on all the juicy stuff from underage sex to suicide to drugs to elaborate scams, but in the last few months, there has been very little reported. Either Pattaya is now devoid of such crimes, or for whatever reason, the Pattaya Mail has decided not to report on such crimes. It has got to the point that the only crimes they seem to report on are those crimes which are solved. Oh, and the nightlife column got pulled too. For Bangkok residents, it used to make a good read and a laugh, but now it seems, for those outside of Pattaya at least, there is no real need to buy it.

If you find yourself down in Pattaya, do poke your nose in the door of Misty's Gogo in Soi Pattayaland 2. The girls have just started wearing a new uniform, and it is without a doubt, the best uniform I have seen in a gogo bar.

Also down in Pattaya, Vixens has been warned that their girls need to keep their tops on. Vixens, like so many other gogo bars in Pattaya had reverted back to the ways of the good old days with the girls dancing with very little on, but somehow an undercover Thai policeman managed to get inside the club, saw the girls dancing topless and warned the management that it was tops on or girls out! By The Way, did you know that the cute DJ in Vixens in Pattaya is barfineable?!

A new access way is being built from the Chidlom BTS station to Gaysorn Plaza. But when will Gaysorn Plaza re-open? It seems like it has been closed for the best part of a year.

Is it me or does Rainbow 1 have more girls that smoke than any other bar? It seems that every second girl in that bar is a smoker. Cigarettes, I'm talking about…

Yep, these ones are really, really high!
– This photo was kindly provided by Rusty.

What is it with bargirls and these platform shoes with monstrous soles. Such shoes really do not seem to have been adopted by other girls in Thai society. Sure, you do see the odd regular Thai girl wearing such shoes, but generally speaking they are not the ridiculously high ones like the shoe pictured here. Just what is the appeal? Is it because many of the girls come from the Northeast where the average height is less than in other areas – and they want to make themselves appear taller? Or is it because they like anything that is the latest fad – even if it is only the craze for a very short time? It all reminds me of the old days when I used to barfine bargirls. You'd slip the girl the 500 baht for the bar and would wait anxiously while she went out the back to get changed. In my case, the anxiety did not come from any pre-liaison tension, but rather anxiety based around how this girl would be dressed when she came out of the changing shed, knowing that I'd be parading her through the lobby of my apartment building ten minutes later with all and sundry gawking – and the least thing I wanted to be seem with was a girl with zero dress sense.

Good news for all mobile phone owners outside Thailand. DTAC have unlocked the system so that you can now bring your overseas mobile to Thailand and simply insert a DTAC sim card and start using it without the hassle of getting it unlocked.

It seems that the free beer promotion that had been offered down at Clinton Plaza is no longer with no more coupons to be found in the Bangkok Post.

From time to time one hears about people overstaying their visa. Frankly, it is one of the dumbest things that you can do. In many ways, overstaying one's visa is not all that dissimilar from doing the dirty with a working girl without a rubber. In both cases, the odds are that you will be ok, but immediately afterwards, you start to worry – and no doubt regret the stupidity of your actions, wondering if you will pay for your inane decision. And while things will usually be ok, there is always a chance that something really bad might happen – and that can really play in your mind.

As you enter Bottoms Up gogo bar in Nana Plaza there is a large sign with red Thai script of the door that says kad blod arwoot which basically translates as "no weapons allowed". At a lot of the more upmarket, more expensive Thai bars, such signs are common and you can even check your weapon in before you enter, and get it on the way out.

TEFL International will be holding a big party from 12-14 April. It is open to EVERYONE associated with the English teaching community in Thailand, families and kids. On Friday night there will be a dance with live band (free, but alcohol not provided), on Saturday a boat trip to Au Kiu on Ko Samet (free) and on Sunday a water fight in Ban Phe (free). Anyone interested please email Big Bad Bruce directly at [email protected]

Water is an unusual commodity in Bangkok. In many parts of the city, tap water is apparently potable, but most of us don't trust it, and I'm yet to meet a farang who regularly drinks water from the tap. But it is the situation in restaurants that confuses me. When you order food, you may choose to order water which will be the bottled variety and for which, in most places at least, you will be charged. However, if you fail to order anything to drink, you will likely still be brought water, though you will not be charged for it! Just what is the deal here? I've never really worked it all out, and while I'd love to question them on the origins of the free water, sometimes I wonder if it is better not knowing. And then there are times when I'd love to order "oh just bring me the free water please"…

Quote of the week comes from an Australian friend who I was talking with earlier in the week about the visa application process for that country. "I know she got the visa because I tore the page out of her passport and ripped it up into little pieces." Ooops, I wonder what she did wrong!

I confronted a girl in Fantasia in Nana Plaza this week to try and explain to her that she had an STD and that a friend of mine was able to isolate his contracting an STD from her. I wanted to explain to her that she ought to get herself checked out and get it treated, for there can be long term problems and potential complications. Her reaction was complete ambivalence. After hearing what I had to say, she chose not to respond and just ignored me. When I tried to check that she had understood what I had just told her, she decided that she wanted to hear no more and she up and left!

The Oriental Queen in better days…it sunk on Friday.

I was thinking the other day about how prices have moved in the time that I have been in Thailand and how I felt prices had increased quite a bit. So, I thought back to the prices that I used to pay and have have made up a small table of some of the most common goods and services that farangs might purchase with the prices in 1998 and 2002 along with the percentage change. All prices are obviously in Thai baht. It should be noted that I am talking about early April 1998 compared to late March 2002 which is almost exactly four years. Also, the exchange rate, while fluctuating during those four years in a range from 36.5 – 45.5 Thai baht to the $US, the rate was at both of the two dates trading at between 43 and 43.5 to the $US, so currency fluctuations should not be a real factor.

1998 2002 % change
Internet cafe per hour average 100 30 – 70 %
Cinema ticket Siam Square 60 100 + 66 %
Beer Bottoms Up Bar 70 100 + 43 %
McDonalds Big Mac 55 59 + 7 %
Can of Coke 12 13 + 10 %
Jack Daniels 750 ml 709 855 + 21 %
Fried rice on the street 25 25 no change
Taxi ride 16 km 100 100 no change
Heineken at supermarket 25 34 + 36 %
Magnum brand ice-cream 17 25 + 47 %

I would have considered any price increase of up to 20% over a four year period to be about average given the current economic conditions in Thailand. Few items decreased in price, as would be expected. While this small table does not represent it, public transport prices largely stayed the same as did the cost of apartment rentals which have been flat for a very long time.

Its always nice to think back and reminisce about the past. Those good experiences you had that you wouldn't trade for the world. So when you think back about your times in Thailand, you might remember that 20 something year old Isaan girl who while only fresh out of the villages, treated you like a King. She was so sweet and demure and you have vivid recollections of her, perhaps the most intimate moments of your life with the most heavenly of creatures. After one night, you knew that such an experience never could be repeated, and to do so would only mar your recollections of it the first time around so you resisted the temptation to track her down again. Many years later you are down in the darkest dungeon of them all, the Thermae. Standing amongst friends enjoying a beer and a few laughs, an old hag approaches the group and everyone ignores her, no-one remotely interested in someone who's expiry date was many moons ago. Horror envelops you as she says "Hello XXXX" (insert your name here). You glance at her and horror turns to shock and then disbelief as you realise that the heavenly creature who you met many moons ago has transformed from that beautiful little young thing, into this old, hard, haggard individual. Two points need to be be made here. First, these girls have the most amazing memories, so don't be at all surprised if a girl you only knew once approaches you, addresses you by name, and is able to tell you where you lived at a certain point in the past, including your apartment number! It probably all goes back to the rote learning system that is employed by most teachers in Thai schools. The second point being that if you take a girl from the Thermae and return many, many years later, don't be totally surprised if she is still there, but don't expect life to have been too easy on her…

Your Bangkok commentator,

Stick