Welcome to my website. In case you're new, you might care to know that the purpose of this site is to offer rants, tirades, opinions and discussion about books on Thailand, give an overview of nightlife in Thailand and, yes, to provide a few news items which might not appear elsewhere. And to have some fun.
Bar, club and restaurant owners who would like to send material on their special events, birthday bashes, anniversary parties, etc., are welcome to do so but please remember men in Thailand are a bit jaded so if you’re just going to offer the usual free gourmet food and free full band entertainment and free beautiful and eager-to-please women, well, the lads have been there, done that. So do try to offer potential patrons something special. ;-)
There is a contest every two weeks when this column appears and the first to answer the question correctly or identify a photograph correctly will receive a free book written by myself and other prizes such as free food and drink from Larry's Dive, The Londoner and Bourbon Street Cafe. The prizes will build up in case anyone doesn't win it immediately so the bonanza for the eventual winner could get quite interesting.
I will also add information to a column as I receive it or report on nightlife as I encounter it so check back now and again as there may be much new even within a week or ten days. And please remember a part of all money received from the sale of my books goes to needy Thais (in the form of payment to go go dancers, waitresses and hostesses).
Well, we did manage to get through the two day holiday without any bars being open, right? It wasn't easy but we did it. With the help of several pubs staying open. And now all is back to normal in Thailand, although "normal" might be the wrong word for life in Thailand. And Peter's birthday party at Sheba's was lots of fun, some of the girls were fantastic (except the one who called me grandfather), and the ribs were excellent. The food was brought to us at our seats inside the bar and while I was eating a girl came by and took the greasy (toilet paper) napkins out of my hand and gave me some clean ones. Try to get that service in the West, not to mention watching scantily clad dancers at the same time.
Friday the 12th is H.M. the Queen's birthday which is a public holiday which could mean bars are closed so check with your local Entertainment Provider immediately!
A couple of nights ago, I was heading from Sukhumvit soi 31 to Sukhumvit soi 33 but somehow ended up at Nana Plaza on soi 4 instead. Strange town, this. Maybe the streets don't run logically, kind of like Manhattan's East Village? But for that matter what in Thailand runs logically?
Anyway, whatever you do, do not go into Rainbow 4 at Nana Plaza. I did so and it was packed with gorgeous young women dancing and cavorting. Stay away, young lads, in fact, better to stay away from Nana Plaza altogether lest ye be led astray by one of these winsome lassies. Go back to your Western country of choice, stay in at night, and watch Animal Planet or some dumb Survivor kind of program that seems to be all the rage in the various Western countries where there is little else to do at night but watch gobbledygook on TV. Dave the Rave sent me word that all the Rainbows are now open. As I have warned, the four Rainbow bars hire so many of the go go girls that according to my calculations when all four are open at the same time, that will leave at most one or two dancers per bar for the other Nana Plaza bars. But then I always have been a worrier. Click on her picture and say hello to Apple from Rainbow 1. In fact, take a bite.
Scenes I'd Like to See Dept involving Truth in Advertising: A notice at the end of a movie which had lots of animals in it: "All of the animals which appeared to be injured in this film were in fact injured and had to be put to sleep."
The Blockbuster video/CD stores in Bangkok have no depth to their stock at all, do they? I do miss the video store in Manhattan's East Village, Kim's Video, that had great old movies, foreign movies, etc. It even had a section entitled: "Films with gratuitous violence and unnecessary sex." Needless to say, that was my favorite section.
I wish I had a dollar for every foreign man who has divorced his foreign wife and when I ask why, looked at me with a helpless expression and said: "They're (Thai women) just too beautiful and too available."
Another wish: I wish bars wouldn't run catwalk models on their TV sets over the bar. Watching these pathetic, scrawny, I-just-got-out-of-a-concentration-camp type models puts me off my beer.
The image Dean Barrett believes Thai women have of him
The image Thai women actually have of Dean Barrett
(Although I suppose the above image problem could apply to most farang men in Thailand, no?)
What would be the absolutely worst job in the world? Ever think about it? Well, when I lived in Manhattan and was taking a playwriting class, one of the guys in the class read a short piece in which his character was a guy who worked inside one of those video places with booths for male customers who wished to sit in privacy and watch dirty movies and perhaps even stimulate themselves while watching. Such places used to be all around Times Square before they "cleaned it up" and made Disneyland out of the place. Anyway, the character in his play was the guy who had to mop the floor every half hour or so.
So I used to think that was the worst job in the world. Then I mentioned it to a gay composer friend and he smiled and said, "Nope. That's not the worst job. I bet I know one even worse."
And I said, "So what is?" And he said a "fluffer." And I quite naturally said what the hell is a "fluffer?" And he said it is the guy working on the sets of porn movies whose job it is to ensure that the actor's organ is hard and erect when the shooting starts. Whatever it takes. Oh. OK. You win, sez I.
And the prize for MORON JUDGE OF THE YEAR goes to...Pang Kin-kee of Hong Kong who recently cut one year off the sentence of a rapist, a guy who raped his 25-year-old Filipino maid several times, because - wait for it - the rapist was a former goalkeeper with the Hong Kong national football team so the MORON JUDGE said he would cut the sentence by one year "because of Lau's contribution to the Hong Kong football team."
But don't we all contribute to society in some way? And how is a half man/half child rapist moron with the IQ of a dying water buffalo kicking a ball into a net or preventing others from doing so ABOVE THE LAW??
Does this judge have the same respect for bankers, lawyers, social workers, prosti-, I mean, "entertainment providers" and others so everybody gets time knocked off their sentence or is it only goalkeepers? If I were to appear before him in court would he say, "Oh, yes, Mr. Barrett, you wrote The Go Go Dancer who Stole My Viagra, a most important contribution to world literature, so I'm knocking a year off your sentence?" Somehow I doubt it.
I'm always amazed at punters who go to bars because the price of beer is ten or twenty baht below another bar. Frankly, the beauty of the women is what is important to me; not how much a bottle of beer is. But that's just me. In other words, if beautiful and available Thai women are on the premises, they can charge 110 baht or 125 baht or whatever for a bottle of beer. Keep your eye on the prize, fellahs, don't get distracted by sweating the small stuff!
New rant up on the Rants Page: Feminazis Posing as Book Reviewers.
Did you see where Oprah Winfrey got all bent outta shape because she couldn't get into the French luxury store Hermes when they were closed for a public relations event? She said it was "one of the most humiliating moments of her life." Poor baby. But she must have had a very sheltered life if that is one of her worst moments. Maybe she should grow up.
In India the bargirls dance to Bollywood tunes and men shower them with money but can't touch them. I think I'll stay in Thailand, thanks.
More American Puritanism, this time Chicago. Police now have a website showing the photos, names and addresses of people arrested for soliciting prostitution and the police chief admits they are out for "public humiliation" of the offenders. Amazing. Nothing better to do than to go after guys who would like to have sex? No bigger crimes happening in Chicago? And why this puritanical American need to humiliate anyone interested in ladies of the night? Pathetic. Meanwhile, we have great times with ladies like these. As we say in Washington Square, I love America, but I sure wouldn't want to live there.
Speaking of this subject, in one of his books the late poet Charles Bukowsky spoke of the problem with marriage. He said marriage is a "sanctified fuck." And all sanctified fucks will always, inevitably, become boring. Become a job. In other words, the reason we find places like Nana Plaza so interesting is that they offer opportunities for what we might call unsanctified fucks. And it seems to me that the police in Chicago are not happy with anyone having unsanctified fucks. Sad, sad, sad. But I think what Bukowsky was saying was that if you have been in a long relationship and you're into sanctified fucks, well, then - you're fucked.
True story: A guy entering Australia by ship filled out the entry form and when it said: "Do you have a criminal background?" he wrote: "I didn't realize it was still a requirement." Australian customs folks were not amused.
OK, here's a clever way of pushing one of my books on China. The first person who tells me the name of Don Quixote's horse gets a free copy. Quick!
I learned early in life what Capitalism was all about. While I was a student at University of Hawaii I worked the night shift at the Admiral Cook Hotel in Waikiki. We had two phones under the front desk counter. One for each taxi company in Honolulu. One was Charley’s taxi and the name of the other company I can’t remember. The phone for Charley’s taxi company was fine; the other one – I kid you not – had not only dust on it but also cobwebs. I wasn’t working there for long when one night I found out why. Whenever we had a fare going to the airport, the driver of a Charley’s taxi cab slipped us US$1. The other company didn’t; hence, the other company’s phone had cobwebs and dust covering it. Yep. I learned all about Capitalism that night. And that’s how I became a moribund, decadent, bourgeois, Capitalist, imperialist. All because of Charley’s taxi.
In fact, after I got my M.A. in Hawaii, I had to get out of Hawaii because the women were too beautiful. Mixtures of Polynesian, Hawaiian, Dutch, French, Chinese, Cherokee Indian, etc., etc. Couldn’t get any writing done. So I came to Thailand. Guess what? I still can’t get any writing done.
Did you see that Thailand has a serial killer? Police say it is rare in Thailand to have a serial killer. Great ad for Thailand Tourist Authority: “Amazing Thailand – No Have Serial Killer Makh Makh!”
Anyway, they know who the guy is (they just caught him) because he does the nasty with entertainment providers and then kills them (five times and counting) and they once had him in a police station on suspicion of something else and during interrogation he kept asking them to take him to a brothel. Not “Take me to Your Leader!” but “Take me to Your Brothel!” Apparently, a very horny serial killer. No way anyone could make stuff like this up.
World’s Shortest Fairy Tale: Man and woman fall in love. Man asks woman to marry him. She says no. He lives happily ever after.
I've been living in LOS for two years and only now discovered your site. I found it a breath of fresh air. Incredible, an unashamed heterosexual who likes to leer at scantily clad Thai beauties, who trashes SNAGs (Sensitive New Age Guys) who say "they never paid for it", uptight farang female tourists (moo falang) and holier-then-thou religious fanatics judging others. But I do see most farang women automatically sneering at older expats who have a sweet Thai girl in hand. What do these women do when they see (and I've seen quite a few) farang/Thai couples with a few children?
Why is Britain jubilant about getting the Olympics? Wasn't the one in Greece a bust financially? Love your take on PC assassins destroying the arts. I can't help but notice the dead silence from the artistic world over Theo Van Gough's murder by a Muslim fanatic. Notice that the only PC villians in the movies are straight white men or fathers? All the muggers in "Batman Begins" are white. The "Manchurian Candidate" remake rewrote the Red Chinese villians into a corporation run by a white man. Fathers are the ogres/monsters in two recent movies "Gothika" and "Hide and Seek". I love it that you use the term "Feminazi" just like me. Some male idiot in my singles group called me on it and implied I had a problem and needed therapy. That was in the asylum (States), he's still there begging for crumbs on the table (crumbs = American women) while I live in BKK and sometimes go to bed early on Saturday exhausted from my nightly encounters. Claw Dagon
There are an incredible number of spas all over Thailand now, some of them inside pretentious hotels charging unbelievably high prices. But, hey, if tourists are rich enough or dumb enough to pay the going rates, why not. But now I see that one is advertising a “coffee enema.” I’m so old I actually think enemas are something horrible, only for when you are in a hospital. I guess that just goes to show that life has passed me by. Anyway, I’ll wait for the “Wild Turkey on the rocks” enema.
One of the interesting things in the Thai male mindset is how differently they look at something from the way western males would look at it. I don’t mean to imply that all Thai males see things this way but in the nightlife area a lot do. For example, I knew a Thai bargirl whose husband was a Thai policeman. She went out with farang guys. She told me once that her husband told her he didn’t care if she went out with farang guys (he was getting some of her earnings) but that if she went out with a Thai he would kill her. Now you know what some Thais think of you. So low that his wife going out with you doesn’t even count.
I was sitting in the Baccara Bar on Soi Cowboy nursing my Heineken and kind of crammed in next to two farangs. One of the sexy and cute dancers from the glass ceiling above came down, squeezed in and started talking with the guy next to me. The conversation didn’t last long and the girl left. I asked him what her price was. He said she wanted 2,500 baht for a short time (5,000 baht long time) and he said no. He also said he had just got back from a month in Pattaya. A month in Pattaya. I’m amazed he could still walk. We both agreed the girl was really cute but you could tell from her attitude that she wasn’t going to be much fun in bed. Some of them are like that; maybe our friends from the Land of the Rising Sun have spoiled them.
A poll of Singaporeans said that sixty percent of them say they talk on their cell phones while they are on the toilet. One businesswoman was quoted as saying: “They can’t smell the stink, so why not?” Um, right. Remind me not to call any Singaporeans in the near future.
You may have heard that Angel Witch, Nana Plaza, 2nd floor, is in an expansion mode and thus has purchased the next door bar Secrets. According to Dave the Rave this extra space will provide both "new ladies and gents toilets, larger changing rooms and an extra row of seating at the left side of the bar." But, Dave, what about those of us who actually LIKE unisex toilets? I enjoy taking a whiz while watching pretty girls preen themselves in the mirror across the room, especially because in the States we'd probably all get arrested on some stupid charge. And you say that you will provide "new ladies and gents toilets." But, Dave, what about the toilets for the "old ladies and gents"? Where do we go?
Dave also says that Angel Witch has introduced five new shows but, once again, Dave has failed to say exactly which nights and at what time the chicks in leather with the whips come on. Not that I'm interested in that sort of thing, of course, but some of the lads reading my columns might be.
And just in case there are in fact readers out there who enjoy looking at lovely Thai women in black leather (and my mail indicates there are) here is a nice photo of two sweethearts chatting together, no doubt discussing which type of torture is better for which type of nationality. Just click on the photo to enlarge it (but if you were smart enough to come to this site you were smart enough to have already known that, right?)
"These Nanapong guys really scream loud, don't they?"
When Dave was fired from Hollywood Strip, Big Bill took over as manager. Now as you have probably heard Big Bill has also been fired. After three weeks. Not my business and I always enjoyed Hollywood Strip, but it does sound like some kind of strange tsunami has hit Hollywood Strip recently. Neither of the Hollywood bars has a manager at the moment.
(By the way, it was some time ago when Johnny, owner of Hollywood, raised the go go girls' salaries to ten thousand baht in order to try to attract new dancers to the top floor. So my suggesting last time that Rainbow 4 raised salaries first was not correct. In fact Rainbow 1 bar pays no more than eight thousand baht for each go go dancer.)
But when Rainbow 4 opened, the bar attracted a lot of customers and in turn attracted dancers from various rival bars who decided to jump ship. So other bars had to raise salaries. And so it went. But Rumor Control Headquarters says that Hollywood Carousel and Hollywood Strip on the top floor are paying extremely high salaries, up to ten thousand for the dancers and more for the showgirls. Thus far without regaining much of the business lost in recent times. But stay tuned. At Nana Plaza, anything can happen and probably will.
And, final word on the Rainbows for now, I promise,
another bar owner tell me Rainbows 2 and 4 are owned by Khun Ming (Thai-Chinese
boss) and Rainbows 1 and 3 are owned by Khun Ming's sister, but are run by her
son Khun Num. I think the main point is that there are lovely women inside
the Rainbows not who owns them but, again, that's just me.
I see Thailand is trading fruit such as longan for tanks and weapons from China and Russia. It reminds me of the Good Old Days in Thailand during the Vietnam War when taxi drivers would sometimes take apples I pinched from the mess hall in lieu of money. I wonder if today’s bar girls would accept fruit for short times? One durian and two breadfruit, Lek, how about it? That’s not breadfruit, dummy, that’s jackfruit! You trying to cheat me?
I met a go go dancer I had met many months before in a pub. She wasn’t go go dancing then and we had talked on a few occasions. I reminded her of that and she said she didn’t remember me at all. Oh. OK, but aren’t these girls supposed to lie to make us feel good? Isn’t that the idea? I mean, in the old days, she would have said, “Oh, yes, I was so hoping to run into you again!” Oh, well, I nailed her anyway. ;-)
The Thai serial killer who killed five women re-enacted his crimes including one in which he drowned a woman. He said “he had learned in prison how to drown people.” Amazing. I didn’t know one had to take a course on how to drown somebody. I thought you just hold their head under water until they stop breathing. Goes to show how much I know.
While investigating a monk’s murder in Fang district, the province’s deputy governor said that “as the monk’s dog was injured, it was possible the culprits had been bitten by the animal and police therefore should check public-health clinics and hospitals to see if anyone had sought treatment for bite wounds on the day the monk died.” Hey, I like that! This guy could write a great detective novel!
I have a question. The other night I was minding my own business in the Londoner Pub mentally undressing some of the beautiful women who work there and planning to go back to my apartment at 9 p.m., making it an early night. My cell phone rang and it was Dave a friend of mine whose beautiful Thai wife was playing cards with her friends so he was on Soi Cowboy and needed company. So off I went to keep him company and ended up in a well known bar watching a rather lengthy and quite uninhibited lesbian show until after 11 p.m.
I returned to my apartment, opened the door, and heard a strange sound. It was as if there was water rushing in my tiny kitchen, which is the room I use for storing books. And, sure enough, it was water rushing in my tiny kitchen, and water had already flooded much of my apartment. A pipe in the wall had broken and water was streaming out all over the place.
So I frantically ran up some stairs, woke up a maid, she woke up some handyman Thai who lives and works in the building, and eventually the water got shut off and eventually, early in the morning, two maids finished moping and shoveling water out of the apartment. Many books were drenched and damaged.
So my question is: Who do I send the bill to? If it hadn’t been for my friend, I would have been home early and been there to greatly reduce any damage. So maybe he should get the bill. But if his wife and friends hadn’t played cards he would have stayed home and not called me. So maybe they should get the bill. But then again since I am renting maybe my landlord should get the bill. Then again if the girls in the lesbian show hadn’t kept me glued to my seat with their, um, unusual and sensual activities, I would have been home earlier. So maybe they should get the bill. Or maybe the owner of the bar.
It’s a puzzlement. Something tells me I’m up a well known estuary without a visible means of propulsion. The irony? I store my books in my apartment because I don’t trust storage places to protect them properly during the rainy season. Just goes to show: When God’s pissed at you and he wants to get you, he gonna get you. Footnote: I told Dave I decided it was his wife's fault but I would take it out in trade. He says I don't have enough books damaged or undamaged worth that much. I guess he's right (sigh).
Would you like to read a really great short story on Bangkok by the film director, Paul Spurrier? It's called SHOOTOUT AT THE OLD DUTCH. It's set on Soi Cowboy and is lots of fun, especially for those who know Bangkok.
Contest for this column: Last column's picture (which nobody got right!) was Hua Hin. Why does everybody think a beach scene must be Pattaya or Phuket? Easy one this time. Just be the first to tell me where you have seen this girl before. Friends and family of the girl need not apply. (I know who you are.) Just click on the picture to blow it up.
And you win a total of 4,500 baht in food and drink at the fabled Londoner Pub, Bourbon Street Cafe & Larry's Dive. And three Dean Barrett novels.
Do you have a product or service you would like to advertise on this website? You can, you know. In fact, you don’t have to have a product or service at all; you can just send me money. Or perhaps you would like me to plug a product or service that you are involved in? Sure, just send me cash. Be sure, however, to mark the outside envelope:
“Birthday money for Dean Barrett –
Absolutely No Bribe Enclosed”
Got feedback to this column? Got information on Thailand you would like to share? Happy as a dung beetle to be living in Paradise? Been ripped off? Just write me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Like satire on Thailand? Try http://www.farangaffairs.com.
Like to know what music is playing where in Bangkok each week? Try http://www.bangkokgigguide.com.
That's all for this fortnightly column. Drop by again. Explore the rest of the website. Meanwhile, as the girls used to tell me during the 1960's: "I no lie you, GI, you number one!"
Back to the Welcome Page