Stickman's Weekly Column January 8th, 2006

Drug The Farang



Some guys fly half way around the world to Thailand simply to engage in carnal activities with the country's famed women of the night while others might venture to Thailand for a holiday with little or no intention of getting involved with such women, but soon find themselves falling into the trap. Guys get involved with Thailand's ladies of the night for many reasons, the availability, the beauty and seeming friendliness of the women at the top of the list. And safety. That's a big one. Where in the West prostitution is associated with various social evils from drug use to poor sexual health to being ripped off or robbed, the naughty bars and the naughty girls of Thailand are safe, are they not? Hmmm, events of recent months force us to ask the question…

Over recent months the number of reports about farangs having problems with the women of the night has increased enormously. Whether it is just that this type of crime is being reported more, or that there is an actual increase in the number of crimes being committed, I just do not know, but my feeling is that it is the latter. There just seems to be more and more of it happening.

The reports are usually much the same. Farang meets a hooker either on the street, usually on Sukhumvit or the Beach Road in Pattaya, or sometimes in a freelancer venue. He takes her back to his hotel or place of abode and wakes up the morning with a splitting headache, sometimes a limited memory, and a number of his valuables are missing. The girl has long gone. Because of the place that he met her, he has no direct recourse immediately available to him. Even just finding her will be hard enough and if her ill-gotten gains were significant enough, she will likely disappear for a while.

She had drugged him. Exactly how the drug was administered is something that we do not know for sure, although it is generally accepted that it is put into a gentleman's drink. I can remember many years ago that the rumours did the rounds of women applying it in a clear, tasteless form, to their chest and inviting their victim to be to feast on her.

So, there you are, the next morning – or perhaps even later, with a splitting headache and the ignominy of being ripped off by a country girl. Hugely embarrassed at what has happened – you did after all pick up a $12 street hooker – do you go to the police? Deep down, you know there is little they can do. "She was short, dark skinned, wore tight jeans and a black top, had garishly painted nails and long, black hair". You just described half of Pattaya, buddy!

And what are the boys in brown to make of a farang reporting a crime against him when he is staying in a sex tourist hotel and has been observed by members of the hotel staff staggering in late every night, intoxicated, and with a different girl each time? Is this the sort of person the average Thai person is going to feel sorry for? Hell, I bet even a few farangs will utter the familiar some num na (you deserve it) under their breath.

Amongst the drugs, it has been suggested that errant women of the night in Pattaya may be using Tramodol Hydrochloride, an over the counter painkiller which can be bought legally in Thailand for just a few baht! This all points towards something that has been acknowledged as a problem in Thailand for over 30 years, the availability of prescription medication easily and affordably, over the counter. I can remember when I studied the Thai language several years ago reading an article about the problem of strong drugs being easily available, an article that was in a textbook dated 1973!

Apparently Tramodol is virtually tasteless in a drink, is cheap and just 50 mg will induce unconsciousness if the victim is already drunk. When they wake up the victim will likely be disoriented. However they will likely remember everything. 100 mg of Tramodol can send a sober man to sleep, 200 mg will knock him out for 12 to 15 hours while 500 mg upward can kill. When you consider that you could get 1,000 mg of Tramodol in a thimble if the pills are crushed up, this is a real concern!

I can see the scene now. The little vixen looks at her prey and notes that he is rather large, even by farang standards. What does she do? She wants to make sure that he sleeps through it all so she doubles the dosage or even triples it. Bingo, it's a fine line between knocking him out for the evening and knocking him out for good. You only have to read some of the regional newspapers to see that there is no shortage of suspicious deaths.

One of the biggest concerns I have about such crimes, particularly crimes against foreigners, is that the perpetrators so often get away with it. It would be imprudent to speculate just why this is, but murmurings of a bias shown by the authorities in disputes or issues between farangs and Thais would seem to be relevant in some cases. What is perhaps most perturbing is that no matter how heinous the crime is, this bias would appear, in some cases, to remain.

Are we talking about the perfect crime? If you know that you have an advantage of sorts, why would you even consider not doing it? It would seem that these girls just continue to get away with it, and if they get away with it once, and make a lot of money, what is to stop them doing it again and again and again?

What needs to be understood about some of these women is that they are not really prostitutes at all, rather posing as prostitutes but really there to drug and rob punters.

There are a few steps you can take to reduce the chances of anything untoward happening to yourself:

* Don't pick women up off the street. It could turn out to be a very false economy. After all, the whole reason such women are approached is price, isn't it?
* The same warning applies to freelancers.
* Girls who work in bars are a safe bet.
* The only drink you drink is the one you pour yourself and never leave unattended.
* Don't get totally off your face drunk.
* Make sure your lady friend's ID card is not just lodged with security / reception before she goes up to your room, but that the details are also recorded.
* Choose a hotel that has a safe in the room and use it for all valuables including laptop, camera, passport, cash, travellers cheques etc.

Exactly why this problem has got worse, who knows? Is it a change in the crowds we are seeing, with perhaps less "naughty boys" coming to Thailand? Or is it simply greed, and recognition that more money can be made by drugging and robbing farangs than by sleeping with them?

The truth is that we do not know exactly what is going on, how big the problem is, and whether there has even been an increase in this type of thing or not, but my feeling, and the feeling of quite a few people I know, is that the problem is getting worse than it was.

As I've said many times before, this is prostitution and wherever you happen to be, wherever you find prostitution, you inevitably find other associated problems and this is just another example of that. Take precautions though and you should be fine.

WHERE IS THIS PICTURE Competition?

It was Nana Plaza as seen from the Landmark.

Where the hell is that?!

Last week's pic was taken from the Landmark Hotel, looking down on the top of Nana Plaza with Sukhumvit Soi 4 and the Nana Hotel also in the picture. This week's first prize is a 500 baht credit at Tony's Bar in Soi Cowboy. Prizes number 2 and 3 are a 600 baht dinner voucher for 2 to be used at Sin in Sukhumvit Soi 4. The prizes are only available to people in Thailand now – either residents or tourists, and must be redeemed within 2 weeks. You MUST say that you are in Bangkok and able to claim the prize or I will consider you ineligible.

FROM STICKMAN'S EMAIL INBOX

Will problems in Thailand lead to tourists venturing elsewhere?

Just a note to say that the murder of a young British tourist on Ko Samui has received very wide coverage here in London – front page of most papers. Regarding your comment in last column that the sheer aggregate of bad news regarding Thailand may be a dampener on the tourist industry, such publicity can only dissuade the more timid potential tourist. Another factor worth bearing in mind when it comes to the lack of old-style high seasons: one of the biggest impediments Thailand faces is the boom in budget airlines in Europe over recent years. Everyone here has a story about getting an outrageously cheap fare to somewhere in Europe with Easy Jet, Ryanair etc. Those tourists who are just looking to get some sun during the European winter are now much more likely to shell out just a few quid to go to the Costa del Sol, Turkey, Greek Islands etc, rather than shell out several hundred pounds to go to Thailand. And 'single male travelers', can now get what they're after in eastern Europe at a fraction of the cost of a visit to LOS – witness the strange boom in flights to Riga! Those Europeans who are absolutely rusted onto Thailand will continue to visit regardless of cost, but Thailand's status as THE place to go that it held during the 1990s continues to ebb away. My prediction is that Thailand will increasingly become a holiday destination for Asians, principally the newly-moneyed Chinese, more so than farang. Expect to see the phenomenon of Rainbow-style targeting of Asian punters by bars to continue apace. Have you considered a Mandarin version of your site?!

If he had taken time to look at the price list first…

I am really pissed off after last night's drinking session. Cocktail prices at some Bangkok Bars around Sukhumvit: Gulliver's 125 baht, downstairs Nana 110 baht, G Spot 150 baht, Dollhouse 140 baht, Londoner 160 baht, Tony's Restaurant 165 baht, Morning Night Bar 200 baht. The last bar is interesting. This is the low-class, 'low-end' bar on the left hand side of Soi 4 before you get to Nana. Popped in their the other evening with my girlfriend, to 'people watch'. Girlfriend wanted a Mai Tai so I ordered 2. Drinks came with the usual slip. Looked at it, and almost choked on my drink. 400 baht? For 2 Mai Tais? Called the girl over and said to her, there must be some mistake. NO BAR in this area charges 200 baht for a Mai Tai! Five minutes later I have a rude and aggressive manager with a drinks list showing me that it IS 200 for a Mai Tai. But how they also justify the most expensive drink prices in all of Sukhumvit, and then take issue with their prices being questioned, I will never know. The lounge overlooking the river at the Shangri-La charges only 250 baht for a Mai Tai!

Another happy reader!

Having just read your "column" off the internet, I must say it is the most unprofessional, disgusting, ill-mannered piece I have read in some time. Second rate seems to be the norm here in Bangkok. It is literally an embarrassment for anyone with a Western background to have pieces like this written.

Beer, Philippines style.

Your comments in this week's column about the people preparing food and not being too clean reminded me of one of the times I was in the Philippines visiting with the wife’s family. We were at my sister in law's and her husband had gathered some friends for a night of drinking. Before hitting the bars they had some beer at home, outside in a small park near the house. They have a habit there of pouring the beer into a pitcher and then putting ice in the pitcher now filled with beer. Being from Canada I had never seen this done, we would drink it from the bottle, putting the bottles in a portable freezer with ice in the freezer if need be. Any how while they are drinking they go and have a piss a few feet away. There is no where to wash ones hands. They then grab some more ice and put into the pitcher. This did not seem to bother anyone, as they were all doing it. I’m thinking this is sick, the guy had his hand on his dick, now it’s on the ice which is in beer I have to drink. My only hope was for the alcohol to kill what ever germs there may have been.

Unable to make the adjustment.

I enjoyed reading about Korat but more than three days there would make me crazy. And your point about your farang limits if you do not speak the local dialect is spot on. The politically correct that are always bleating about the wonder of sharing with others of different stripes do not understand that pantomime and grinning and head nodding are not sufficient for sharing. You have to be able to speak and listen and understand with people. This is a notion that no one wants to hear from me so it just becomes one more thing that I keep to myself. When my father reached the age of about fifty I started to notice that he was getting quieter and quieter. I think now I am beginning to see why. You are weary of the little pointless social battles with people less educated or less experienced than yourself so you just withdraw within.

Is he for real? (Or, is the internet cafe owner for real?)

Something just happened to me which you may want to report on. While here, I "rented" a computer. What I mean by this, is that many of the internet cafes allow you to use a PC for 30 baht an hour. I would "rent" the PC by paying them 10 hours in advance and then install and use Bit Torrent to download MP3 files for the entire time. I was downloading only MP3s, including MP3 music, MP3 audio books, and MP3 pod casts. This had been going on for three days. After I left, according to my host, the police came to this internet shop which I was using and threatened the user with arrest and fine of 50,000 baht should the person ever upload and / or download MP3s ever again. To me, this is really scary!

Carousel A Gogo in Pattaya may have broken the record for the most expensive barfine in a gogo bar when they were asking 1,500 baht for the barfine for showgirls on New Year's Eve. It was "only" 1,000 baht for a regular dancer. Needless to say, there were still many showgirls there very late into the evening. Some of Bangkok's Soi 33 bars actually charge more than this as their standard rate, but soi 33 aims at a very different market. I imagine the soi 33 bars didn't inflate their rates on New Year's Eve but then you never know! Frankly, these prices are just too much and in my opinion, are taking the piss.

The new Angelwitch in Pattaya, the place some have nicknamed "The Collosseum", managed to get the bar finished just in time for the soft opening and the management are happy with how the first few nights have gone. At one point customers started to fill the second level which has a large balcony. The place was really buzzing and it remained very busy for the best part of the night. The showgirls from Angelwitch in Nana Plaza were sent down to Pattaya and they performed well. Owners Matt and Pim were very pleased and said the showgirls excelled. Matt said, "They seemed to really get a buzz from being able to perform on the opening night in a brand new bar." Customers in Bangkok need not worry because the Angelwitch showgirls are back in action at Nana.

But not all customers were happy. As one regular reader told me, the opening of Angelwitch in Pattaya fell short of his (high) expectations. He felt that the shows were a bit boring and tame compared to what goes on in Pattaya. The shows have been done in Bangkok for years, and may be exciting for a newcomer, but we have to remember that a good number of Pattaya based blokes are the proverbial snakeheads! A woman spreading lotion on herself while ensconced in full clothing, is not going to keep the attention of that lot. While the best at Angelwitch were performing in a seductive way, over at Coyotes there was a 10 girl lesbian orgy on stage, with all hell breaking loose and absolutely no clothing. Has Matt underestimated Pattaya? He may need to step it up to compete for the attention of the locals in a city where the gogo bar war seems to be about the bar with the raunchiest shows. What was very interesting was that a good number of the bar owners and managers from Walking Street bars were in the bar, no doubt keen to see how many of their girls had been enticed to work for Angelwitch, or is poached the word? I failed to check the prices of drinks at Angelwitch Pattaya and I do wonder whether the sometimes niggardly spending habits of some Pattaya locals could become an issue. Still, Angelwitch is one of the biggest brands in the business and long term I am sure they will do very well.

In something a little bit different, Erotica Bar was closed down because the owner had an argument with the boys in brown about certain things. Whether you agree with them or not, it is best not to show any open dissent to the local coppers.

There has been no change regarding the closing times in Nana Plaza, all of the them are still closing before 2.00 AM.

In a small victory for bar owners and their customers, the powers that be have announced that it will be 3 AM closing in Pattaya, but only in certain areas, meaning Walking Street. Bar and club owners away from Walking Street were less than pleased with the announcement, feeling the ruling should be city-wide. On the other hand, they are hopeful that this action might serve as a pilot project that would be expanded later. The deputy mayor pointed out that Walking Street is seen as a special zone because of its long established identity, proximity to the sea and adequate policing measures. He was confident that the extension would increase business and enhance profits. Police emphasised that they would be checking to ensure that the 3 AM deadline did not drag its feet until the sun came up. The first Taksin government introduced its social order campaign in 2001, dictating that all bars and entertainment spots must close no later than 1 AM. They said earlier closing was justified on the grounds of needing to protect youth, reduce crime and control anti-social behaviour. There was no explanation of how or why closing bars at 1 AM, instead of 3 AM, would achieve those goals.

As has been reported in this column for months, the feeling at Nana has not been the same as it used to be. It is all business, business, business, and many Bangkok based Westerners who like a good night out are going to Pattaya for the weekend rather than go down to Nana Plaza. One Westerner involved in a Nana bar sent me the following which has been heavily edited because some of it was just too hot to print. But it does give you a good idea about how things are:

As we all know, Soi Cowboy can show, girls can dance naked, no one interrupts anything there. That is the way it should be in a gogo bar… Nana Plaza on the other hand cannot show anything. We open a bikini, we have trouble. We do a sexy show, we have trouble. Whatever the bar owners in Nana want to do is strictly regulated by Lumpini and a few "big guys" in Nana Plaza who rule. If one bar shows, another manager or owner will take his cell phone and call 1191 and the Metropolitan Police will walk in and close down the bar in one way or another. It is just a matter of time… In Soi Cowboy, the owners and managers are more like a family, everybody knows about naked dancers and erotic shows but everybody shuts up, because they all, yes ALL, make money. Nana Plaza has exactly 4 bars where they "show". All of them will go down, being closed down is only a matter of time. 3 Calls to 1191 and I assure you that detectives will close them down. Certain people in Nana are killing the plaza. At the end of 2007 when all the leases come to an end, you will have a Nana Plaza with maybe 7 bars who make a profit and all the rest will take their girls and relocate. This year, there is no high season for Nana Plaza. Sales are even worse than in the low season for 70 percent of the bars. But losing face in Thailand is not nice, even for Farang owners, so nobody will tell you how bad it is. As a bar owner in Nana myself, I can only hope that visitors will appreciate the effort that some owners do to please the customers. Not all the bars are made to rip off their money as soon as possible. Some bars don't push girls into your lap and ask you 7 times to barfine them. Some of us also care that you have a good time.

In their defence, I reckon Rainbow 4 and the Big Mango are two Nana bars that are still a lot of fun to hang out in.

Hollywood on the top floor of Nana Plaza was in hot water for "showing" and had to resort to desperate measures to prevent themselves from being closed. It was a real fiasco because one of the Hollywood doorman, from all accounts an infamous hot-head, upset an undercover cop by being arrogant and aggressive towards him. Said doorman has since been fired but it was a costly incident. Hollywood was desperate not to get closed again and performed some magic of some sort, the mind boggles as to what that was, to remain open.

Some Nana bar owners are none too happy and are pointing the finger at Cathouse and their drink all you can Chang for 100 baht as being a large part of the problem of drunks wandering into their bars and causing trouble.

And down at Cowboy things are going the same way with Dollhouse's mad crazy silly happy hour, or whatever it is called, no longer offering the 30 baht drinks as they used to. Prices are up to 50 baht. A shame really, as that was a good place to start off the night.

There was a "deal on the table" arranged by a number of the bars in Nana to allow all bars to open until a more sociable hour, but it fell through at the last minute when some of the bars pulled out.

Business continues to be mediocre, at least for this time of year, in the naughty bars of both Bangkok and Pattaya. As the recently ousted Ricky of Diamond A Gogo said, "What we are experiencing is more like a high low season, than a high season per se."

It would appear that at least 2 bars in Soi Cowboy are starting dancing at 6:30. One is Long Gun and the other is believed to be Cowboy 2. Also Long Gun starts its shows much earlier, at around 8:30 – 9:00, depending on the crowd. So you can start at Long Gun and then migrate to Suzie Wong at 10:00 for more shows, if that is your thing. Some readers have mentioned that they're not in favour of the Long Gun shows due to their similarity with the shenanigans of the upstairs show bars in Patpong. Also in Cowboy, Midnite is now offering table dancing, the same as Apache.

Don't forget that the second heat of the charity dance contests at Susie Wong's in Soi Cowboy will be held next Sunday, that is the 15th of January, and it promises to be a great night. Organiser Peter is hoping for lots more money to be donated, all of which will end up with a kids charity.

The 24th anniversary party at Lucky Luke's will be held on Thursday 12th of January. Food will be available at what is the oldest beer bar in Nana. 24 years? Yikes!

A new bar has opened in Washington Square called Good Times, and the owner chose to open there because of the nostalgia of the Washington Square area, and because the square has in the past few years fallen away in popularity. Damned unusual to open a bar in such an area if you ask me, but what would I know? He met with quite a few of the bar owners in the square and after the usual fearful jealousies, many decided that it would be a good idea to have some new life. He has brought in 11 new hostesses, and tries to have a very 'laid back' theme, as is the case in most bars in that particular area. The girls wear different dress every night, from gowns to hot pants and the girls are said to be of the non-pushy type. Like many bars in Washington Square, they emphasize a 'welcoming' atmosphere, trying to learn every customer's name. Since they opened, a German guy has re-opened the dead Crystal Bar adjacent and has renamed it to Cheers Bar. While Washington Square's life expectancy is dubious, they hope to have a positive impact on the area while it lasts.

For the many people who have emailed me asking for jobs in the IT sector in Thailand, there may be a bit of hope. Word on the street has it that companies trying to find qualified, experienced C# programmers are struggling. If you have these skills, then there may be demand.

I wandered into the Majestic Grande for the first time this week, the new "boutique hotel" on Sukhumvit Soi 2 and it seems to have everything going for it. The location is great and it is big, but not too big. There is an air of professionalism about the place that you do not usually find in that price bracket. You can get standard rooms online for well under 3,000 baht and while I did not see a room, I have heard nothing but positive things.

Quote of the week comes from Mrs. Stick. "Even when you are totally pissed off, don't get aggressive with Thai people as it will get you nowhere. Complain all you want, but keep the aggression out."

If you're after a copy of the banned book, "Bangkok Inside Out", you won't have any luck finding it in branches of Asia Books or Bookazine. You will however be able to find it at least two bookshops down in Pattaya…

One thing that I have begun to realise more and more here in Thailand is that no matter how well someone speaks English, if they are Thai, they will always be Thai. I know that personally I often let my guard down when people speak particularly good English, mistaking the language ability with an understanding of and willingness to do things, the Western way.

After 8 years in Thailand, I can usually spot a katoey at a distance, and seldom does one slip under the radar these days. But what I can't tell is whether the guy who is with her knows just what she is, or at least, what she once was. This past week I was sitting down, having a quiet lunch, when a young, handsome guy walks past with a katoey in tow. Now I thought she was a pretty obvious example of the third sex, and I couldn't help but wonder if the guy actually knew the real deal. To me that is what is more interesting, actually working out whether the guy knows or not! And if he does? Yuck!

Notices up in Hillary 1 and 2 bars tell us that Loso, the extremely popular Thai musician, will be performing at Hillary 2 Bar on 2 February. Loso was all the rage in the late '90s and his style is heavily influenced by Western rock music. I guess he's probably the most popular Thai artists with farangs. If you have any interest in Thai music, this is one guy who would be worth seeing.

In typical Thai fashion, there is a huge banner up in Livingstone's Bar in Soi 33 for Waikato beer, a regional beer from New Zealand. But asking for a bottle of the product gets the response of alai wa! I figured out that the Livingstone's sports bar is home to The Southerners, that group of sportsmen with a significant New Zealand, Australian and South African membership, and that was the reason they had the banner there, not because the beer is available! Never mind, it's hardly the world's best drop anyway and just cannot compare with the excellent weissen bier they have on tap there.

Ask the Sticks

Mrs. Stick is here to answer questions surrounding anything that confuses you in Thailand, particularly issues of the heart. Please note that for general bargirl related questions, Mr. Stick might answer them. It has to be said that Mrs. Stick is not your stereotypical Thai woman. She is not Buddhist and she is not shy to criticise things about her own country and culture, although having said that, she remains proud to be Thai. Mr. Stick will try and answer the questions which Mrs. Stick is not so sure about. Please do try and limit the length of questions to Mrs. Stick to about 100 words. We get many questions that are entire stories of several hundred words which I'm afraid are just too long to run here.

Question 1: On New Years Day my Thai wife and I went out to dinner with our two University aged children (my step-children). I invited my fellow American friend and his Thai girlfriend to join us. Unlike my wife his girlfriend is considerably younger. He being 59; she 26. Everything was going fine until he pulls out his camera and starts looking for a picture of his girlfriend to show us. His girlfriend, sensing what was about to happen, pleads with him not to do so. The mood shifts to uncomfortable and my friend, not heeding his girlfriend's pleas, shows me a picture of his scantily clad girlfriend on his camera phone. My stepson, daughter & wife all saw it as well. I jumped all over my friend, telling him there are times when he should listen to his lady. He seemed offended that I would make a big deal out of it, claiming it was merely a bathing suit. Initially I thought I may have overreacted, but after hearing comments my 19 year old stepson made to his Mom, I feel I reacted appropriately. It seems to me that some guys in Thailand think they can behave as if they are in a locker room, no matter what the circumstances. In the USA this behavior would have been deemed as crass and totally inappropriate. Shouldn't it be the same here? What do you think?

Mrs. Stick says: This axxhole acted in a totally inappropriate way and I cannot think of any situation or any place where what this guy did was acceptable. This is actually quite disgusting. Why would you want to be a friend with a guy like this? And I bet the girl in question must be re-considering having this guy as her boyfriend. It might be true that guys come to Thailand think they can behave like this, but really, this is unacceptable anywhere.

Question 2: My wife is from a large village near Khon Kaen. The people in the village speak Lao / Isaan dialect, but most of them can also speak Central Thai fluently. Normally, when in Bangkok, my wife speaks Central Thai, but whenever my wife's relatives come to Bangkok, for example her brother or sister, and we go out for a meal at a shopping mall they often speak Lao / Isaan together. I've noticed that some of the other Thai diners (upon hearing them speaking Lao / Isaan) give a strange look, maybe I'm misreading the meaning of the look, but it seems like disdain to me. By the way, my wife is not an ex bargirl, and does not look like one. As a side issue, I speak reasonable Thai and would prefer that they speak Central Thai so that I understand more, but I suppose if the family has been speaking Lao / Isaan together for 30 years then I shouldn't ask them to switch to Central Thai just for my benefit, especially as it happens only occasionally. I'm wondering, is it considered low class, unfashionable, or unusual to speak Isaan / Lao in public places in Bangkok?

Mrs. Stick says: The Isaan region is the poorest part of the country and that might make people from other regions look down on Isaan and people from Isaan is that many are working class. Some people may even think that because many are poor, they might be involved in some nefarious activities. While Bangkok may be the most developed part of the country, the people's attitudes are not always that developed and Bangkokians are noted for classifying people as this or that. As long as you are sure that the people you were with did not speak too loudly or use coarse or inappropriate language (people from this part of the country often speak loudly and that they avoid using some of the slang – which can be considered vulgar by Bangkok folks,) then everything should be ok. Some people from Isaan are not always sure of what is appropriate behaviour or etiquette in public. But if they did speak loudly and / or use coarse language then yes, they will get the rude looks you referred to.



To all bar owners out there: Often news comes in about your bar, with it being anything from promotions, to comments about shows and general feedback. I would much rather get news of what is happening at your bar from you directly than from friends who are out and about and slip me news and views. Obviously what I see with my own eyes and from a couple of trusted, close friends, will always appear in the column, but it would be great to hear directly from bar owners. A number of bar owners do email me with news and gossip from their bars – it is welcome from all bar owners! It is after all, effectively, free advertising for you. So whip out your keyboard and let Stick know what goodies you've got planned, and the reasons why your bar should be on the must see list.

Your Bangkok commentator,

Stick

Thanks go out to Mr. Write, Dave The Rave, JZ and Bkk Grasshopper.