Stickman's Weekly Column January 12th, 2003

Why Are We Single?



TMSB is in his early 30s. He has lived in Asia for many years and has a pretty good idea of what makes the locals tick. He is tall, considered handsome by many, and has a very good job that pays very well too.

K is early 30s. He is considered extremely handsome by most women who meet him. He works for a multinational company and is on a medium term contract. His income is quite high. He is multilingual although his Thai is only so so.

C is in his late 20s. He has a a good job with a big company and a whopping great salary. He dresses very well and I have heard it said that he has exceptional fashion sense. He looks even younger than he actually is and is considered handsome. As a bonus, he has a very good command of the local lingo.

B is 30. He is an English teacher, that is, a professional English teacher. Well read and with a razor sharp mind, teaching may not provide him with an income to compete with the others, but he'll outsmart them every time. He dresses fairly well and is reasonable looking, though the beard which almost stereotypes him as an English teacher will certainly put off a few ladies.

All of these guys are in the prime of their life. All are good looking guys in good shape with a couple considered downright handsome. They all have a very good income by Thai standards, with at least a couple of them earning the type of money that would allow them to lead a comfortable, if not luxurious lifestyle, just about anywhere. All are very interested in meeting a nice girl, but they all seem to struggle to meet Miss Right.

All four of these guys live in Bangkok. All four of them would like a nice Thai girlfriend, but even after spending years in Thailand, all remain single. Why is that?

In previous columns I have talked about meeting good girls (by definition here, I mean girls who would not work, nor have ever worked, as a prostitute, or in any job related to naughty nightlife). I have stuck my neck out and said that such girls are not hard to meet at all, and I stick by what I said. So, why do the four eligible bachelors above all have trouble meeting Miss Right?

As a Westerner resident in Bangkok, letting people around you know that you have an educated and articulate Thai girlfriend who never worked in a bar will see you flooded with requests for introductions to her friends.

I often wonder whether Western guys living in Thailand are just too fussy. Sure, one doesn't want to lower their standards when considering someone of the opposite sex for a long term relationship, possibly marriage, but I so often get the feeling that too many guys want the best of both worlds, the best aspects of a Western girl and a Thai girl, all rolled into one. They want the the independence that a Western woman has along with the earning capacity, the critical thinking and the appreciation, acceptance and pursuit of Western ideas and concepts. They want someone who will drop their knickers no later than the third date. But on the other hand, they want the perceived demureness of a Thai woman, they want to be looked after and pampered, all by a women exuding exotic Eastern beauty. In essence, THEY WANT THE ULTIMATE WOMEN!

Accepting someone who does not quite fulfil all of this criteria in no way constitutes lowering one's standards. I so often feel that Western guys in Thailand have a completely unrealistic attitude towards the type of woman they would like to meet, and through setting the bar awfully high, they potentially miss out on meeting someone who may very well turn out to be Miss Right.

While Khun Expat is twiddling his thumbs in his apartment, reading through "The Big Mango" for the fourth time, biding his time away through the evening, Khun Thai Woman is also sitting at home, wondering if Mr. Right will ever come along, and whether she should prepare herself for a long, single life, destined to become an old maid.

Let it be known that nice Thai ladies want to meet you NOW! So long as you are not super fussy, any presentable Westerner can meet an exceptionally nice Thai woman. Just remember that while she may not be the perfect specimen that you are looking for, odds are high that you aren't the 100% model that she is looking for either!

Where is this pic?

Last week's pic

It was the the Regent Hotel.

This week's pic

First to get last weeks pic right won $25 worth of goodies from the good guys at ClubHombre.com. The picture from last week was of the New Year's lights that have been erected outside the Regent Hotel on Rajadamri Road. Remember, there are TWO prizes offered for the where is this pic. First person to get the pic right, irrespective of location, wins the prize of $25 worth of goodies from ClubHombre. In addition to this, the first Bangkok based person to answer the pic correctly wins a tube of MyCreme sexsational cream. You MUST be in Bangkok to claim this particular prize which will be delivered to you. So, to all Bangkok based folks, make it clear in your email that you are Bangkok based so that you qualify for the cream that will send your teeruk to heaven!

THIS WEEK'S MOST INTERESTING EMAILS:

Phuket is such a nice place.

In Patong, Phuket, the land of the perpetual dispute between people who live here and 'Tuk Tuk' drivers, (i.e. we would all use them all the time, if they would go for a reasonable fare, but they won't, as they actually control the island, so mostly we walk) one entrepreneurial chap with a bright yellow Daihatsu tuk-tuk, is driving around with the following words painted in 6 inch high letters across the back of his vehicle. "Jihad is my life". I have seen this vehicle on several occasions, filled with foreign tourists, as it is a side entry vehicle, I guess they do not see the slogan, until they have paid their fare and the vehicle is on it's way to collect it's next victims. There is also, for your information a guy (apparently, Thai) walking around Patong with a Tee shirt that says "Jesus is a cunt". Personally, I have no axe to grind on these matters, I just wonder how long any foreigner could walk around with an equally insulting slogan, about any locally embraced religion.
A disturbing trend of violence is appearing…
I ventured into Rainbow 1 (ground floor) accompanied by my tilac around 5.00 AM – making good use of the all night opening times. I purchased our drinks and sat down. The bar was fairly empty… I went to the toilet and as usual wanted to dry my hands after pissing. I was the only guy in the toilets. The hand drying machine had 2 parts of it lying on the floor and wasn't working. So the back of my trousers had to suffice in this instance. When I sat down, a young Thai guy came out from that direction and was
screaming that I'd smashed the hand dryer up!! Now why the hell anyone would want to do this anyway is beyond me. I was quickly approached by one of the burly bouncer doormen who asked for payment of fixing it – 2000 baht. I adamantly denied doing such a ridiculous thing but firmly said I would pay the money just to get the hell out of there. And at all times (TIT), I kept my cool and repeatedly told him I never done it while handing over the money to the SCAM. I left the bar straight after that with my girl. As we approached the Nana soi 4 petrol station, the young mau Thai guy was behind us shouting at me. – I turned to ask what his problem was and just knew he wanted to kick off for any reason. I hit him back after he attacked me and was set upon by the burly bouncer from rainbow 1 and another guy. I hit the floor with kicks going in left, right and centre while I couldn't understand what the hell for. I really do think the bar was probably very lax that evening and they wanted money from any falang and to get their grievances out on anyone. I walked into the wrong place at the wrong time. After they walked, I got up bruised and beaten (ended up with 2 black eyes from my nose being hit and a temporary crown tooth knocked out. – The worst part of it was my back which I suffered with for the duration of my holiday) I was on the floor of the petrol forecourt looking for my broken crown. And was helped by 1 or 2 moto taxi drivers to find it. I did just in time to see this young Thai guy COMING BACK FOR MORE as I held up my hands (as previously) to show surrender. The moto drivers intervened and stopped him coming towards me as I quickly walked in the opposite direction.
What's wrong with one's left hand?! Right for eating and left for…
For those who intend to travel to a remote Isaan village, don't forget some toilet paper. Thus you can avoid this left hand practise the native Isaan locals do like that other reader described. Should be available even at small village shops sometimes too. You know that they use it as napkins.
Can we take them seriously?
What a sad commentary on Thai society. Just goes to show how truly pathetic and laughable these people can be….we all know it. Thai people (from top to bottom) have distinguished themselves as idiots not capable of producing many things of substance (except the EASY beautiful women with low virtue). These nationalistic people rarely give credit where credit is due. It amazes me how inept this society is but i encourage them to continue enjoying our movies, music, and fashion. I'm not saying Thailand is a bad place. On the contrary it is a wonderful country with an easy pace of life. It's yours and mine for the taking. I just wish they would tell the truth. How about humility, integrity, consideration for others? If Thailand truly wants to be taken seriously they would stop worrying about face and initiate a culture of accountability and merit. But I am not Thai so my word is not important or noteworthy!
Sorry, can't explain it!
I thought the purpose of a bar fine was to compensate the bar because you took the girl away from the bar during working hours. Apparently not! Some places on Soi Cowboy were expecting bar fines despite the fact that 2 O'clock had rolled around and the girls were getting ready to go home. Explain that if you can…
Do you know the rules?
Your latest Weekly got me thinking some more about the pervasive dishonesty and inability to accept criticism among Thais. I think it boils down to this: Thais must be perfect. They cannot live with themselves otherwise. But, of course, they are not perfect. Nobody is. So, in order to cope, they ignore their own shortcomings, and by unspoken agreement, the shortcomings of others. To cover up their mistakes and errors they lie reflexively, and, just as reflexively, accept unquestioningly the lies of others. When we Farangs arrive here, nobody explains this to us. Nobody tells us the rules. We point out their fuck ups, and the Thais make lame excuses. Then we accuse them of their obvious lies, and they go ballistic. We don't understand that to get along well in Thai society, we have to go along with their game, and that game is called DENIAL. They have a social contract that says, "I won't expose your lies and faults, and you won't expose mine- OR ELSE!" It's simple really. Just pretend everything is great even when it isn't. Never raise a complaint or make a negative comment about anything, and, above all, keep grinning like an idiot and you'll get through pretty much any situation unscathed.
Harvard scruffs.
A simple understanding of CONFUCIANISM goes a long way in helping to understand the fundamentals of Thai society. According to Confucianism, social stability is based on UNEQUAL relationships between father and son, ruler and subject, senior friend and junior friend, and man and woman. Thais generally feel comfortable within the social hierarchy and therefore strive little to improve their social station. Power and authority are HEREDITARY and have nothing to do with merit or ability. Farangs lie outside the social structure and are therefore judged almost exclusively on EXTERNAL APPEARANCES. For this reason, the well groomed and smartly dressed pauper will find Thailand a far easier place to live in than the Harvard PhD scruff.

Sogo with the Xmas lights.

Andy's new club, Electric Blue, opened on January 4 for a private VIP party which was very well attended. Sunday the 5th was the grand opening night with yet another Nanapong dance contest. 50 baht drinks were on hand all night for all the Pongers. Sounds like fun was had by all, but it would have been nice to know about it beforehand! The club is open every night at 7.30 with INSANE HOUR – 10 baht drinks for one hour, then 35 baht Chang beer all night every night. They are a little short on dancers right now but should have a full contingent by the end of the month.

Three Roses Bar on the second floor of Nana Plaza has been sold to a foreigner. But although a small, ordinary bar, the interesting point is that it is rumoured to have been sold for over 7 million baht. Word from the street 7.5 million baht…..WTF! What the hell are the good bars in Nana worth then?

The police raided Mandarin Bar in Nana and an entourage of about a dozen Lumpini officers set up shop outside Fantasia Bar to check urine samples of every gogo dancer. Girls were being ferried in and out, urine samples being examined in public for all to see – and all during a busy Friday night in Nana Plaza! A tourist passing by (I kid you not) stopped to take photographs of the urine testing. Nobody expected this to turn into a perverse kind of spectator sport. Naive farang bystanders were even asking the police what they were doing. TAKING THE PISS!!! That is what they were doing in more ways than one. Word from the inside says that Mandarin were caught with some underage girls (under 18) during the police inspection and the outcome of this will appear in perhaps a fortnight. It is thought that they will receive either a 15 or 30 day closure. We will have to wait and see but it does not sound like good news for Mandarin Bar.

And the Lumpini Police are far from finished taking the piss. Nana Plaza bar owners have been have warned to be alert on Friday nights as the authorities seem to want one bar in Nana drug tested on a weekly basis! They seem hell-bent on upsetting the sex tourist industry….is this an omen of things to come? I'll keep you posted as to what happens.

There is a rumour going around in Las Vegas that a casino company in Las Vegas has bought a hotel in Pattaya and is waiting for word from the government to open a casino, possibly exclusively for farangs (!). Sounds unlikely, but hey, you just never know.

Don't forget to check out the website of those good guys at Sunbelt Asia. They have all sorts of opportunities, including a job that may appeal to someone who doesn't want to teach English: Sunbelt are looking for a writer to do interviews. The job entails writing business summaries and taking pictures of the listings. Pay is 35,000 Baht per month. Includes work permit. You must have a digital camera. Please respond to [email protected]

For those of you who fancy getting into the bar business, please note that Sunbelt currently have 7 businesses for sale on Walking Street in Pattaya. One is a very famous disco that did 71.5 million baht net profit last year! Another is a restaurant that has been established 15 years and the rent is only 34,000 baht a month.

From down in Koh Samui, it seems that a lot of the bars are operating with a Western concept in that there is no bar tab and just pay as you order. So far, so good. However, what happens to the tips for the drinks (that is assuming you actually give a tip). If you you spent 2 hours in a bar and spent say, 480 baht, you may leave 20 baht or so as the tip (which is perfectly reasonable and enough in Thailand). But under the pay as you consume concept, say one beer was 60 baht, you might give them 10-20 baht each time meaning over the course of a night you may leave up to 150 baht in tips. There are obviously advantages and disadvantages with this way of doing things.

Wat Arun, the most photographed temple?

For lovers of American sandwiches, the first Subway franchise for Thailand has been acquired. It will be located in the All Seasons Building on Wireless Road and should open later this year.

From my piece in last week's column about the introduction of a 3 baht fee to use the toilets in MBK, I can confirm that that price includes complimentary loo paper! It seems that is just one of the ways they are trying to justify this charge.

EF English First have a new language school under construction at Siam Square. While this might not sound particularly newsworthy, the other schools should take note because the location that they have is excellent. it is very close to the Patumwan Intercession and can be seen from afar, unlike virtually all of the other language schools at Siam Square which are buried deep within the network of sois. EF should be praised for getting the location right. I'm sure many students will leave the other schools for the new suay premises of EF.

If you are not innocently, you are probably not aware that a major crackdown on copied goods, particularly copied software, is about to take place. Panthip Plaza and other shopping centres are being targeted and it seems that this time, they may just be serious.

Its the time of year when things get a bit embarrassing, the time when past flames decide that they would like to catch up and see what is happening. It has happened each of the past two years, and it happened again this year. Over the Xmas / New Year period, a few past flames, some from 3+ years back called to see what old Stick was up to. Now it is nice to know that one has not been completely forgotten, but when one has a girlfriend, it can be somewhat embarrassing when three different girls call, none of whom you have spoken to in over a year. I'm sure I'm not the only one who received such calls over the holiday period.

Dave Walker, author of "HELLO MY BIG BIG HONEY", said that his book could be made into a movie with people in the film industry showing a real interest in the project. The rights for Big Mango were optioned some time ago and I also believe interest was shown in Aspara Jet and at least one other Thailand nightlife book. Whether anything eventuates or not is to be seen, but I'd love to see what Hollywood could come up with for a Bangkok bargirl / customer story.

Starting from this week, Stickgirl's (formerly referred to as Miss Stick) influence has seen her take control of the final word in the column. She will answer your questions each week. Please note that Stickgirl has never worked in a bar and could be considered your average "good Thai girl". Oh how I hate those words, but they will have to do for now. The first question this week is from me, but as from next week, she will answer YOUR questions. Please forward questions to her, via me, at the usual email address.

What general advice would you give to a Western guy who would like to meet a nice Thai girl?

Stickgirl says: I cannot give you a specific answer because its hard to apply one idea to all men. First you need to know exactly what type of woman you would like to meet, because not all Thai women are the same. And not all "good Thai women" are the same. I can share one thing with you. I used to get advice from someone who I really respect. He gave me this example: If you like someone who studies hard, you should search in a library. If you like someone who likes to party, you should search in a bar. Once you have established the type of woman you want to meet, go and search in the type of place where you would typically expect to find them. BUT, you need to take your time to understand Thai girls and Thai culture FIRST. You need to know that Thai girls and farang girls are very different.

Your Bangkok commentator,

Stick