Monday, August 31, 2009
No many alleys are left in America, but London abounds in these narrow passages. Estate agents called them 'cul de sac'. That's obsolete French for 'back of the bag'. My friend Sam Royalle lived on a cul-de-sac in Nottinghill Gate. Off Westbourne Grove to be exact. The top of the alley was bracketed by a Domino's Pizza and a bloodbath of a pub serving the disenfranchised of the the council housing across the way.
Sam and I never drank at the bucket of blood. We preferred the Westbourne Pub. Poseurs and trustafarians. Models too. Sam had dealing s with them all. Plus the yardies of Brixton. Nasty lot them. Fancied themselves gunmen. Shot people to prove it too. One claimed Sam owed him money. 100,000 quid.
That was a lot of money then and a lot of money now.
The boys showed up at his flat with shotguns. Not a daily occurrence on his mews. Neither of us were home. We decided to stay away for a couple of weeks. A trip to France touring the Loire valley with my father. The yardies were threatening Sam with certain death. I suggested that he hide out in Thailand. He accepted my advice and we both flew from Charles De Gaulle the next day. His ticket was for Bangkok. He had a reservation for the Malaysia Hotel. Nothing really bad ever happened there. We shook hands and he threw me his keys.
"Anything that fits is yours, but keep an eye out for any suspicious Jamaicans."
The warning was well taken even though Nottinghill Gate is fraught with suspicious Jamaicans and whiteys too. Sam had a leather jacket from Agnes B. It was my size. Danger versus fashion. I risked the run.
Across from the cul-de-sac was a grocer. I stood at the door for thirty minutes. He asked if I was going to pay rent. I bought a bag of ginger snaps. My purchase shut him up. After thirty minutes I decided that it was safe. I crossed Westbourne Grove and entered Sam's apartment without turning on the lights. Everything was there. The yardies hadn't broken into the place. I pulled the leather jacket from the closet ready to leave. The motion detection lights illuminated in the alley. Someone had followed me. I ducked under a table.
Knocks sounded on the door. I did not answer. My blood pounded out a bongo beat. Like the heart in Edgar Allen Poe's TELL-TALE HEART. I heard voices. Accented from Kingston. The shadows were not black enough to camouflage my white skin. The high windows was crowded with the silhouette of heads. A heavy thud rocked the front door. It did not give way. Several minutes later the light in the alley went out. I waited a half-hour before exiting from the house. No one was in the mews. No one confronted me on Westbourne Grove. I had the jacket in my hand. The leather was soft as a baby seal.
I have it to this day.
Some dark alleys aren't so bad as long as you don't walk them when they are dark.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
My position on drug legalization has been well-stated over the years, however I ma not naive enough to ignore the problems besetting those using drugs in extreme or the people surrounding them, mostly innocent family members or neighbors.
Pot is no longer pot. It's turbo-powered skunk.
I don't smoke that mutant shit.
Blow is a concoction of cocaine, heroin, and Viagra.
No quality control at all and it's driving addicts crazy along with their insensate dealers. A female friend is totally stressed by the dealers across from her house.
"I'm looking to move because of the ignorant drug dealers and surrounding neighbors who are users and the gossipers and the fact that I need to get out before it gets out of hand as I am apparently the only one with a small child who has a living reason to care."
Chairman Mao killed most of opium dealers and those addicts who the Communist Party could not rehabilitate. That tactic is not an option in the USA, although PM Thaksin of Thailand had death squads murder most than 3000 suspected druggie in his War on Drugs.
No change, so I suggested that my friend move ASAP.
Sometimes Tai-Flee is the best course of action.
My return to New York City was unceremoniously greeted by my good friend Andrew. While awaiting my trial in Thailand, he promised a 'soft landing' in a hard city. The architect kept his promise. A room and a little food. This edge proved decisive in my recolonization of New York as was my yearlong stay with Vladmar in Williamsburg. Basement apartment for a little money. Small enough that you couldn't swing a cat around your head, but warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Damp too, but I don't suffered from arthritis. All was good until I decided to check my shoes.
They were covered with furry mould.
Blue and a millimeter thick.
I was not alone. This fungus had spread to all my shoes. I wasn't scared, even though Vladmar's Russian friend said that he had lost his teeth to mold fungus after a long sea cruise.
"They fell out one by one. Healthy teeth."
This discovery acted as an impetus to leave Valdmar's basement. Andrew was offering his top floor as a refuge. It was cheaper, cleaner, and bigger. I explained to Vladmar that I was leaving his place. I had given him no warning. He was angry. Feeling betrayed. I didn't want to be a bad man, but this is 2009. It's every man for himself or 'sauve qui peut' as the French sailors say once the women and children are off a sinking ship.
Vladmar said, "Selfish coward. Go on your merry way."
I packed my bags within an hour. A cab took me to Fort Greene. I missed Vladmar and the old neighborhood. The food from the Italian shops was delicious. I felt like a bad man, but slept better knowing the deadly mold fungus was not lurking beneath my feet. Vladmar will get over it too, because I'm brave enough to know when going is better than staying. Anyone who survived the Titnaic will say the same.
"We are so accustomed to disguise ourselves to others that in the end we become disguised to ourselves."
Francois de La Rochefoucauld
Every writer compiling a book of quotes have to deal with several icons of a well-turned phrase; Oscar Wilde, Mae West, and the ever-apt Francois de La Rochefoucauld, duc de La Rochefoucauld, prince de Marcillac. This 17th-century nobleman exuded witticisms undated by the passage of time, but what else can you expect from someone who had been sentenced to the Bastille for defaming Cardinal Richelieu. Surviving those eight days and a serious wound in battle Francois de La Rochefoucauld retired to his estate with agrudge against everyone in power. He exited from his exile into the salons of Paris where his pent-up intellect savaged the stupid and salved the lovelorn. La Rochefoucauld's Maximes remain a treasure for the ages.
For more quotes go to his URL
The word 'Chappaquiddick' conjures up a drunken senator abandoning his lover to a watery death. The 1969 incident permanently damaged the youngest Kennedy' chances to the White House.
"When I got to the car. Mary Jo wasn't there."
The famous accent said that sentence with conviction, however police divers found Mary Jo Kopechne in the overturned car. A later inquest speculated that the drowned office worker had lived for 2 hours. Ted Kennedy settled with the family and the Massachusetts voters re-elected him to office by a landslide.
Some conspiraphiles have attributed the incident to Teddy being drugged by CIA agents, thus explaining his erratic behavior. As much as I faulted that agency for participation in the deaths of JFK and RFK, Teddy does not get a free ride from Chappaquiddick. He fucked up and fucked up big time.
Even if he was set up by the CIA too.
He should have seen it coming.
Growing up outside of Boston in the 50s and 60s, the Kennedys were idolized by the voters. They could do no wrong. Sleeping with Marilyn Monroe was considered a good thing. A nuclear confrontation with Nikita Khruschev was an act of courage. JFK's death broke our hearts, but the faithful placed their trust in RFK, his younger brother. He seemed destined to be president until his assassination in LA. brave. The legacy was to be carried by the even younger Ted, who gave a memorable eulogy for his beloved brother.
"My brother need not be idealized, or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life; to be remembered simply as a good and decent man, who saw wrong and tried to right it, saw suffering and tried to heal it, saw war and tried to stop it. Those of us who loved him and who take him to his rest today, pray that what he was to us and what he wished for others will some day come to pass for all the world. As he said many times, in many parts of this nation, to those he touched and who sought to touch him: 'Some men see things as they are and say why. I dream things that never were and say why not.'
These words thrust the junior senator from Massachusetts on a course for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Richard Nixon has lost once to JFK, albeit by 100,000 contested votes in Illinois and given his mismanagement of the Viet-Nam War Teddy was ready to assume his title as TMK.
A car crash on Chappaquiddick Island cost the life of his passenger, Mary Jo Kopechne. Teddy pleaded guilty to 'leaving the scene of an accident' and asked the Bay State electorate to forgive him. They overwhelmingly voted for him in 1970, although the incident cost his title of Senate Majority whip, allowing him to pursue policy instead of politics.
His popularity gained strength and he was considered the front-runner for the 1980 democratic nomination until CBS' Roger Mudd asked in a Faniuel Hall interview, "Why do you want to be president?"
"We, uh, we’re facing complex issues and problems in this nation at this time, but we have faced similar challenges at other times and the energies and the resourcefulness of this nation, I think, should be focused on these problems in a way that brings a sense of restoration in this country by its people to, uh, in dealing with the problems that we face, primarily the issues on the economy, the problems of inflation and the problems of energy and I would basically feel that it’s, uh, imperative for this country either move forward, but it can’t, uh, stand still or otherwise it moves backward."
This rambling reply sealed the fate of his campaign even most of America was watching the premiere network broadcast of JAWS. The people further distanced themselves from the Kennedy campaign as the Tehran hostage crisis deepened into a conflict between America and Islam. Ted gave a great speech at the convention and returned to the Senate, his home away from home for the next 29 years.
Some GOP flacks criticized Ted Kennedy for his near-misses with death and his drinking, but he was one of the few senators to vote against the war in Iraq. He exercise courage at a time of moral surrender to the messages of GW Bush. He also contested Israeli occupation of Palestine, despite the nationality of RFK's assassin. Health Care and Cancer Research benefited from his tenure and his years in the Senate will bear fruit for the American people will passed his departure from the world.
"For me, a few hours ago, this campaign came to an end. For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die."
And then all the brothers were none, except in the hearts and minds of those they left behind on this world.
See yah, later Teddy.
The next whiskey is for you.
Last night I put my headphones on the kitchen table. The leads were attached to my laptop. The power chord was separated from the headphone wires by several inches. I fell asleep to dreams of Thailand. I do miss my families.
I woke early in the morning and went into the kitchen. The computer was on the table same as the night before, however the wires were in a tangle. No one had entered the room during the night, so I was mystified by this phenomena of tangled wires. It has happened before to me and almost everyone else in the modern world.
Put two wires in a room and they will become tangled like a rattlesnake orgy.
I searched Google without finding a satisfactory explanation. One scientist suggested an analogy that our bodies are comprised of billions of cells and even more nucleus only 20µm big, however our signature of DNA has a length of 3 meters if it were laid out in a straight line. Instead it is meshed by a maze of ever-changing knots by the constant motion of our bodies.
This made some sense to me, but tonight I'm videotaping the wires while I'm asleep.
I'm sure the tangles have something to do with elves.
They certiantly have a mischievous reputation
Saturday, August 29, 2009
In 1978 I lived on East 10th Street with my girlfriend. A hillbilly from West Virginia. 3rd floor rear apartment. My bedroom was situated on the airshaft. An actor friend lived on the 5th floor. Every night the building shivered with the screams of a woman in orgasm. This cascade of cries of 'oh god yes' continued for a week. It could only be the actor and his svelte girlfriend. My girlfriend went frigid and I couldn't maintain an erection. Finally I confronted my friend, "Could you tell your girlfriend to keep it down?"
"My girlfriend? I thought it was you."
We were both wrong. The source of the sexual maelstrum was the 4th floor apartment. Two lesbians.
Twice the men we were at half the weight.
THE ITCH cannot be found on Google. This novel about sex no longer exists in the 21st Century except in the collection of pornophiles. I held it in my hands many times. Mostly my left hand. Certain pages were my favorites.
A friend once borrowed THE ITCH to write about 1950s stroke books. He never returned it. The sense of loss haunts my libido to this day and my search of the internet pales to the pleasures derived from reading about the lurid passages. The mind is much quicker than the eye.
Of course few people admit to watching porno.
As Gore Vidal said, "Looking at porno only leads to more looking at porno."
How right he was.
Friday, August 28, 2009
The ex-model from Paris posted the following on Facebook.
Revelation 13:16-18 -- "And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast,... or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is 666."
I went into the bathroom and searched my body for mark. I wish I could have found none, except I had a mole in my left armpit, so I wrote. "I've looked all over my body for the mark of the beast. Do these third nipples mean anything."
The ex-model from Paris was swift with her response. "It is very dangerous to mock the holy word of God."
I understood that god had a testy sense of humor. My fate was eternal damnation under the fiery rain of Satan and I replied, "My brimstone umbrella is open."
the Bible talks about"scoffers" and it says you will be held in account for "every" idle word. Just imagine for one second, try, you your puny scoffing little self in front of God almighty who loved you enough to sacrifice His only begotten Son, and you are blithely spitting in His face? Stop commenting its better for you. Get down on your knees for the time is nigh and repent. Soon all Hell will break loose, remember my words and pray to Jesus when the time comes, because it says if you repent and call on His name he will save you. But if you die before this you will go to hell. Hell is not a place that God created for man, he made Hell for Satan and his minions, but as man chooses to follow Satan instead of His creator, he must go to be with Satan. Jesus says either you are with me or against me, and it also says that Fools say there is no God, where God says His existence is apparent in His works. Everyday you get to live a life that is GOD given and you are not able appreciate this? It is a terrible thing to scoff at the sacrifice of Christ, believe me God is alive, He loves you, and your pride which is blinding you, because God wants us humble, as Jesus was, He was born in a stable. Listen Peter, don't scoff at scripture you have no idea what you are doing it pains me to see your Superciliousness, I am feeling you this out of Christs love, otherwise why would I bother?"
She seems fairly serious about this, but I can't get a date for the doom for her.
I looked up in the sky this morning and there was no chariot of fire. Only clouds, but if the ex-model from Paris is right one day I shall be properly humbled before the face of her god. Problem is that no such vengeful god could be mine.
Last week Mexico decriminalized the possession of most drugs to combat the overcrowing of that country's jails and prisons. Several Latin American leaders have criticized the USA for its 'war on drugs', saying the decades-old policy is an abject failure. Despite having toked a bone in his youth, President Obama has turned his back on his roots by refusing to enter the legalization debate, however the issue might be catching up with him, as an advisory board in Denver overwhelmingly to adopt a very lenient possession penalty.
$1 for less than an ounce.
At that cost the state will not be able to afford prosecution of marijuana smokers, which count for the largest number of drug arrests in the USA. Other members of the board recommended total decriminalization. More surprising were the poll results.
Poll - Decriminalizing Pot
Do you support decriminalizing marijuana?
Total Votes = 6020
It's a landslide.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
207 British soldiers have died in Afghanistan. 4 troopers were killed in a firefight to protect the voting power of 151 Afghanis and the US forces are doing no better. July and August have been the deadliest month of this second war in Asia, yet no one in the USA or UK seems to notice that troops are being killed by the dozens or that our troops are killing hundreds of civilians. Instead the newspapers and TV report about 10 Taliban killed here and another car bomb until the public's eyes have collectively been glazed over with boredom.
President Obama pledged to get us out of Iraq and Afghanistan.
We are still there.
No one gives a shit.
Except for people like Melvin Sterne, editor of CARVE.
He's there teaching English at the university.
Or my Friends in the service and their families, but the rested of the USA and UK couldn't give a flying fuck.
The answer is not more troops.
The answer is no troops.
The dead have faces.
Bring the boys home.
Many farangs like to call Thailand 'Disneyworld for Adults', however the UK Foreign Office reports that more Britons die in the Land of Smiles than any other tourist destination and that includes Blackpool. More Brits met their makers last year within the Thai borders than UK soldiers killed in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
269 with most deaths attributed to motorbike accidents. These numbers might be higher since not everything is reported to the authorities. Most are on little scooters. People get drunk and think they are Moto-GP riders, except a Yamaha Neuvo can't corner the curves on Koh Samui at 100kph. Most tourist end up in the scenery.
Drug arrests were also featured in the report.
Spain was #1, the United Arab Emirates #2, and Thailand picking up the bronze.
So unlike Disneyworld prepare for a rough ride sometimes.
The life you save might be your own.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
1978 was a great year. I was living in New York. My job was at the city's #1 punk disco. My girlfriend was a blonde model from Buffalo. Lisa was having an affair with the 10th ranked tennis player in the world and I thought that they were just friends. The tennis player even bought me drinks at Studio 54 after which he asked to dance with Lisa. His European good manners further masked his true intentions. They disappeared for an hour. I never said a word. Love can make a man that blind and sex even more blind.
Disco, nightclubs, fashion models, punk rock, drugs, and New York City was an intoxicating cocktail for a man in his early 20s. Girls came onto me everywhere. I remained faithful to Lisa. My friends hinted at her infidelity. They had proof. The newspapers repeatedly published photos of her with the tennis player.
"They're just good friends."
No one bought that line, except for me.
Maybe I was blind to her affair. Lisa and I rarely spent time together. She worked days hunting jobs with photographers. My hours at the club were nocturnal. It was easy to believe she loved me. Her blonde Slavic beauty mesmerized my senses and her words of love after sex were too breathless for lies. No one was more happy than a fool.
Six months into our relationship Lisa was invited to a club opening. My boss at the punk disco wanted me to scout out the new venue. He regarded everyplace new as a threat to his business. Lisa was surprised when I asked to accompany her, but said, "It will be fun."
The club was opposite then Holland Tunnel. A large crowd was clustered before the entrance. Lisa was recognized by the doorman. We went inside and she was immediately met by the tennis player. He shook my hand and then kissed Lisa on the cheek. His lips slipped down to her neck and for once I suspected that they might be more than friends. His smile disarmed that fear and we drank champagne at the bar.
"May I dance with Lisa?" His diction was too Mittel-Europa to be denied by a punk rocker from Boston. They made a good couple on the dance floor. Other people thought the same. Every eye seem to watch their every move, except those of a slender brunette with full lips. She was staring at me. The men around her sensed her shift in attention. They were jealous within a second and with good reason. I had never seen such a beautiful woman, although most men would have considered her too young to be anything but a girl.
I put down my glass and walked up to her, obeying the silent command of her gaze. Her face was lifted from medieval portrait and I felt like I was approaching a ghost. My mouth went dry. I didn't need to speak. She introduced herself, as if I should know her name, "I'm Gia."
"Gia?" I had never heard that name before. It sounded Italian. I told her mine and she asked me to dance. No one else existed in the club. Only the two of us. Her hand looped around my neck and she whispered, "I like you."
"Why?" I stuttered with innocence.
"Because your girlfriend is fucking someone else and you don't care."
The hall of mirrors reflecting Gia's image into a kaleidoscopic blur shattered with those words. she was telling the truth and I craned my neck to find Lisa. Gia stopped me with a finger to my lips.
"Don't be so concerned. I'm sure she will come back to you. It's only business."
Models needed exposure. Lisa got that from the tennis player.
"How do you know?"
"Because I'm a model too." She tilted her head to strike a vogue pose. Even without make-up I could tell she was a covergirl. Everything Lisa wanted to be. $1000/hour. Top photographers. Glossy ads. Her name on everyone's lips. Fame and fortune from the fate of being beautiful and Gia knew it too. "You want to kiss me?"
The answer was yes, but I felt a presence behind me and Gia smiled with half-parted lips. "Your girlfriend is here."
I knew that and said. "I'll see you around."
Lisa was unhappy with my speaking with Gia. She wanted to know everything she had said to me. I related the brief encounter numerous times like a prisoner in an interrogation cell. My story never changed in the telling. Lisa wasn't satisfied with my version. Neither was I, because given a few more minutes there was no telling what the two of us might have done.
I was guilty in thought rather than deed and Lisa began to stay out later with the tennis player. My faith in her wavered each time she came back to my apartment with her clothing in a state of disarray. She always had a good excuse for a missing button or torn seam.
"Studio is crazy."
She was right. Studio 54 was crazy, but not that crazy. We were over, except for the sex. Twice a day. I couldn't figure out why and I never asked her or anyone else for an explanation. The state of my heart was a secret even if the health of my affair wasn't. Friends at the punk disco said to get rid of Lisa. I tried by not calling her. She called instead. When I didn't answer the door, she had the key. One night I decided not to go home at all. I walked the streets of the East Village. Beer at the nursery. Breakfast at the Kiev. Dawn rose in the east early. Only bums and addicts were left on the streets. It was time for me to go home.
Crossing 1st Avenue I was almost hit by a Fiat Spider. I jumped back fast and felt the tug of the slipstream. Another millimeter and it would have broken my knees. The convertible braked twenty yards away. The driver turned around in he seat. It was Gia. Her smile was one of surprise mixed with amusement. She waved for me to join her. I got into the front seat.
"That was close." Both hands were on the wheel. "You should watch where you're going."
"Was that a red light?"
"Yes, but I didn't see you." She shifted into first gear. "You have anyplace to go right now?"
"No." My bed was a good destination, if there was no one there.
"Want to come over my place?" It was a silly question from the most beautiful woman in New York and I gave her the only answer it deserved, "Yes."
She drove like an F1 driver on the way to her 4th Avenue apartment. The doorman nodded as if I were the 12th man to come upstairs that night, but something about her told me that Gia had been with no one. The past months with Lisa was honed my perception about a man's touch on a woman's body.
"What were you doing out so late?" Gia asked inside her small apartment. The day was softening the night to the west. The noise of the city was building toward the rush hour. She put on a Steely Dan song. AJA. The room smelled of expensive incense. The sofa caressed my body. I was completely relaxed and sat next to her. She smelled even better than the incense. I wondered what her body looked like naked and then imagined even more.
"Work?" The club has closed 4 hours ago.
"More like wandering the streets like the lost." Gia pulled out a packet of cocaine. "You want some?"
I nodded in submission, for she had read my soul as easily as I had read her lack of a man's touch.
"I don't do this usually, but it's been a long week. My agent has me working every day. She says that I have to make as much money as I can, because my beauty will one day be gone." She huffed a line. "My agent is also my lover. I don't really like men"
"Oh." My lurid fantasy disappeared with those words. We were only made to share drugs and rock and roll. Sex was reserved for someone else. She did most of the talking. I did most of the drugs. In the end she said, "You know I saw you're girlfriend this evening."
"Where else?" Gia shook her hair free. She looked at her watch. She had a 9am shooting. In another half-hour she would be late. It was time for me to go, but I had to ask, "You talk with her?"
"Only a little. I was wondering where you were. She said at an East Village apartment waiting for her. She really is beautiful."
"But not like you."
"Maybe just like me, only I have a name."
"Gia." Many models have made-up names like porno stars.
"It's my real one." Gia was good at reading my mind and said, "You have to go. I have to work real soon."
She was already unbuttoning her shirt. It dropped to the floor. This was a dare. I walked out of the apartment without taking up her challenge. Back at my place Lisa was in bed. She asked where I was. I told her the truth. She asked if Gia and I had had sex. I told her the truth again. She didn't believe me. Not many people would and I couldn't blame them either. I didn't believe me either. I never saw Gia again. Not in person. Only on the cover of magazines, but that was good enough for me.
It was all she had to offer me.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
For centuries anti-Semitics have manipulated the truth to portray the Jews as less-than-human. Sacrificing Christian babies was a favorite rumor spread to incite pogroms in Russia and an ugly story has emerged from Israel's last assault on the Palestinians to foment further distrust of the Zionist. A tale of organ theft of dead Palestinian babies. Newspapers in Iran reported this atrocity in 2002. The information was dismissed as a myth, however the story gained a little more credence with the arrest of Rabbi Levy Izhak Rosenbaum by the FBI for organ smuggling linked to the Palestine legend by a Swedish newspaper.
True or false?
It's too horrible to believe that it's true.
The problem is that Israel has few friends left in the world. Bad press is bad press. True or false people remember the news, even if it's a lie, for the masses have heard too many lies to believe the truth and the truth is never known until the end.
Three men are sitting around a campfire; an American Indian, a Muslim, and cowboy.
The Indian says, "Once we were many and now we are few."
The Muslim says, "Once we were few and now we are many."
The cowboy waits a second and then says, "That's only because I haven't played 'cowboys and Muslims' yet.
Monday, August 24, 2009
GOTHAM BOOKS has disappeared from NYC along with my favorite bars, restaurants, and hardware stores. They have been replaced by tee-shirt shops selling XXXX size to overweight tourists bussed from Scranton PA or fancy bars serving $10 Buds to Wall Street junior execs and their fat fiancees.
At the Gotham the staff debated which den of inequity deserved the dubious title of best dive bar on Manhattan. My vote went to the SUBWAY INN next to Bloomingdale's. That venerable den of inequity still serves the cheapest drinks Midtown. A toast bygone eras of errors, but we also discussed everything pertaining to inebriation.
Here's Michelle's list of giveaway signs of a drunk lady.
1. WE HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA WHERE OUR PURSE IS.
Sunday, August 23, 2009
"Regrets I have a few, but not too few to mention." Frank Sinatra sang in MY WAY. I myself only have regrets about the things I have not done for I can live with those I have done; the good, the bad, and the in-between, however other people are not so self-forgiving.
The other day I ran into female friend from the 80s at a restaurant in the Meat Packing District. Her face had graced the covers of fashion magazine. Men fought over her beauty with fists and money. My attempts to seduced ended in unrequited frustration and I resigned our relationship to friendship along with many of the other models populating Paris. We hadn't seen each other in years. I had been living in Thailand. She traveled between France and Africa for business. She was still beautiful in the way that beautiful women are when they refuse to be anything else but beautiful.
We had a few wines and then a drink. I was feeling a little more of the wine than the drink. Her hand touched my arm. "You want a night cap at my hotel."
"I have to go to work tomorrow." It was almost midnight and the L train was shit after that witching hour.
"You could always sleep over." Her touch became a caress.
I had wanted this woman so badly twenty years ago. I would have set myself on fire to get her attention. Now I could only say, "Not really."
"Not really." Her face adopted hard lines. No one had said no in a long time. "You know I was talking about you and several of my friends. We all asked why none of us slept with you."
"And what the answer?" I could see her at a table in Paris. All these great beauties reviewing their love affairs. I had been with none of them
"We always thought you were with one of us."
"Oh." It was too late to relive the past and I pulled away my arm.
"Guess it is getting late."
"I guess so." I walked her over to the hotel. She was gracious enough to not repeat her request and I kissed her on the cheek, smelling the same perfume I had breathed 20 years before. There will always be regrets, but only for the past and not the present and I'll avoid those to prevent getting run down by those naked fantasies. They are too many to count on any man's fingers.
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Ping had no doubt about her future. She worked on Soi 6. The Chic bar was better than many of the other short-time bars on the street, but she did not lie to herself by saying that she was only working at a bar. She had sex with men. Some days none. Other days as many as she could can handle. The most she ever fucked in one day was seven. The record for the Chic Bar belong to Pai. She once did ten men in one day.
Pai wasn't beautiful. She wasn't young. Her selling point was her cost. 500 baht. And she will do anything for that much money. Farang men on Soi 6 were kee-nio. They liked cheap sex and dirty. Sokapok same as a salaam, but then Pai was born in Klong Toey, Bangkok's most notorious slum. She wasn't a friend and Ping made sure that Pai didn't befriend her little cousin.
Over the last two weeks Pai had asked Oom if she wanted to go short-time with her.
Pai liked girls.
She was a tom boy at heart and Ping's lithe cousin was lonely.
This afternoon Pai was plying Oom with whiskey. The older woman was braiding her hair. Her fingertips were caressing the teenager's shoulder. Ping got up from her stool.
"Oom not like girl." Ping stood between them.
"Oom big girl. She can make her mind." Pai outweighed Ping by 20 kilos. She was the msot savage fighter on Soi 6 and had knocked out more than one farang who decided 500 baht was too much after the happy ending. Her favorite weapon was a high heel shoe to the head.
"Oom, have man come want two lady. I get 500. You get 1000. Good idea?" Pai had a wicked smile. Same as if she had sold her soul to Saitan. "Get good money two lady. One man. Your 'sister' she go with me many time."
"Go for show. Never for real." Ping was repulsed by Pai's touch and kiss. She wanted to hit the fat sopenee, but curbed her temper, because the farang who rode a motorcycle with his dog in the basket was across the street two bars down.
"Never is long time on Soi 6." Pai flicked her hair at Ping and walked to the end of the terrace. She had been at the Chic Bar longer than any other girl. Almost 5 years andd her seniority earned her the first shot at any farang.
No argument too, but the afternoon rains fell hard and few farangs wandered the gauntlet of bars lining the small soi. Finally one old man approached Pai. The way they spoke Ping could tell they were long-time friends. The old man was more than old. He was ancient. Ping pushed Oom back into the bar. The movement caught the old man's eyes. He whispered to Pai, who took his hand and came over to Ping with the old man in tow.
"He like you. Give you 1000 baht for me to make love you." Pai said this in Thai. The old man smiled as if he understood, but no westerner could understand the dialect of the distant Isaan plateau. "Give you 1000 too."
'No boom-si?" Ping needed money. Her boyfriend owed the mafia 2000 baht for ja-bah. Nothing worked out good for Nai.
"No boom-si. He only jag-wow." Pai made a masturbatory motion and the old man nodded with eagerness.
"Okay, but he give 1000 baht first."
"No problem. He no cheap Charlie." Pai grabbed her bag and the trio went upstairs to a short-time room after paying the barfines. They took a shower. The old man had skin like a plucked chicken. He was hard. Ping was sure he had taken a Viagra. She hated Viagra. The pill made old men hard as a young boy but for a long time.
Back in the bedroom Ping lay on the bed.
"You want 1000 baht more." Pai was rummaging through her bag.
"For what?" Ping was getting a bad feeling.
"You play with this while I smoke you." Pai held up an electric vibrator. "Old man watch same we dirty movie. 10 minutes and he finish. You have 2000 baht.
"Okay." It was too late to back out. Pai's cousin was the mama-san. She hated girls that didn't do what a man wanted from them. "You do what you do. I play same I finish."
The two girls pretended to be lovers for the benefit of the old man. Ping didn't looked at him, but she heard his hand sliding over his 'ham'. She fought off a shiver of disgust. The old man was older than her grandfather. Ping waited for him to join the two girls on the bed, except he started crying.
Pai lifted her head and winked to Ping.
"Old man, you no good." Pai pulled back his head by the hair.
"I no good." The old man went to his knees. "I bad man."
"I make you good." Pai waved for Ping to leave the room. Ping did as she was told, although she worried whether Pai would give her the promised extra 1000. Downstairs Ping asked the mama-san about the money.
"Stupid girl. Pai crazy, but she no thief." The mama-san was angry. She didn't like anyone speaking bad about her family. Nah-sia or loss of face was no joke for Thais no matter what the class level.
"Okay." Ping walked outside. The rain had stopped and puddles flooded the street. Oom was talking with a young man. he was handsome for a farang. Oom was getting all the good-looking ones. 18 was better than 20. Ping wondered what would happen if she said Oom would go with her for a show. She already knew the answer. Nothing. The two girls were family and that is more important than money. At least as long as Ping got here extra 1000 baht. if not than Oom would have to do whatever Ping told her to do, because they were family and that blood link was more important than money especially when money was on the line.
Ping spotted the farang with the dog. He was talking to a ladyboy. The skinny ka-toey was promising him heaven. Ping had a better sah-wan to offer the Thai-speaking westerner, but he had no eyes for Ping. He drove off toward the beach and the ka-toey smirked at Ping.
Ping stuck out her tongue.
The farang hadn't gone with the slender ladyboy, but Ping knew that he wouldn't short-time with her.
Everyone said he was a good man. His wife had left him for a Thai boyfriend. She had taken his daughter up north. No one knew where. He had to want someone new and at 21 Ping was almost new and that almost was good enough for most farangs. This man belonged to her. Not yet but soon.
Tristam Dequatremare is a French artist. I love his paintings, but on his recent holiday on Ibiza he revealed his pre-eminence as a mercenary position photographer. Here are some of his masterpieces. A man after my own heart.
In 1842 William Miller announced the imminent end of the world. October 22, 1844 was the date selected by his follower by Samuel S. Snow. His congregation prepared for the coming of Christ for two years. The day came and went without Jesus appearing with his host of angels. The date was thereafter known as the Great Disappointment.
Evangelicals are divining apocalyptic signs from present events and born-agains are crying 'the end is nigh'. One advocate of doom is my friend, the model from Paris. Her mother was a devotee to Armageddon and as a girl the model from Paris questioned her mother about having to wearing 'The end is near' tee-shirt. Now nearing fifty the model has rejoined the familiar fold of 7th Day Adventistism and emails me that I will burn in Hell for my sin of non-belief in God.
I asked if there were any other choices and her response was unwavering in its severity.
I don't understand your argumentation, THE WORLD IS COMING TO AN END, and its going to be a full scale hideous tragedy, you will see, its never too late to repent OK?If you have time, before a tsunami wipes you out,
you are just that lazy frog type to lulled by comfort to move your ass before you get boiled as the water goes from luke warm to boiling hot.
the sheep on drugs!!! I am talking to you about Jesus who has a message for you that you are just IGNORING, and you are telling me to calm down hahaha. Please spare me your condescendence, I have une calme olympian cheri......lol...
I'm sorry that you see fit to ignore the existence of God apparently because you lost some loved ones, Jesus said or you are with me or you are against me.
Its your choice, God gives you the freedom to reject him, and believe me you will regret this arrogance one day when you find yourself in front of him.
You don't stop to ask yourself for one second whether you may be wrong? Its a terrible choice to make,
I wouldn't be quite so cocksure buddy,
Lots of love
Subject: Do I Understand the Health Care Plan?
Obama's health care plan will be written by a committee whose head says he doesn't understand it, passed by a Congress that hasn't read it and whose members will be exempt from it, signed by a president who smokes, funded by a treasury chief who did not pay his taxes, overseen by a surgeon general who is obese, and financed by a country that is nearly broke.
What could possibly go wrong?
This message comes from the GOP flacks, but they ain't wrong other than Obama doesn't smoke in public. Nobody pays their taxes. Fat people understand sick better than thin and ain't nothing wrong with being broke.
We all are these days.
The War on Drugs suffered a major defeat this week as Mexico decriminalized the possession of pot, cocaine, speed, and smack. Federal prosecutors raised the white flag on their campaign against small-time users. The national police are famed for their corruption and their search policy was a thin cover for seeking out bribes. Of the 90,000 searches conducted by anti-drug squads only 12-15% turned up drugs and many civil rights advocates suspect that a good percentage of those were tainted by planted drugs. More than 11,000 people have been killed in the failed policy of drug containment.
The new law allows personal possession of four joints of grass and a half-gram of blow, immediately setting up a market for the fiesta pack, so druggies all over the world are celebrating this victory. Start spreading the news, we're coming today.
Next stop the USA.
"We don't need no stinkin' badges."
Friday, August 21, 2009
n 1974 I dove off these cliffs to impress a girl named spooky. 30 feet headfirst. Tweaked my back and barely made it out of the quarry. Spooky left with my friend Neil. He had an Alfa Spyder.
Go figure Spooky in a Spyder.
still friends with Neil though even after ditching out on his in Berkeley for a ride to Denver with a hippie chick in a Ford Pinto. we made love in the Bonneville Salt Flats at dawn ala ZABRISKI POINT.
It was so beautiful.
My cousin and I tried to go swimming in this quarry and a resident told us that it was 'members only'.
Wher is my beautiful world?
My grandmother lived in an old farmhouse in Westbrook Maine. She had served with the royal Canadian medical expedition in the great war. My grandfather had been a doctor for the allies. Her house carried mementos of their meeting. zeppelin debris, helmets, bayonets, and a mural of a french landscape in their bed room. I never met my grandfather, but in 1960 my grandmother pulled me into the living room to watch THE 7 SAMURAI on TV. Somehow I was able to read the subtitles. It was the first film to send me on the road to ruin and I've never looked back.
Hurricane Bill is aiming at the East Coast. Weatherologists are predicting a massive tidal surge from the possible category 4 storm. 15-18 foot waves along the coast. Surfers are ecstatic with this possibility of big-time swells, but I can recall the 'Perfect Storm' of October 1991, when the wind-driven tides pushed the sea up the East River to flood the FDR Drive. Commuters initially ignored the warning of the police and drove onto the inundated motorway with blind purpose of lemmings. scores of cars were washed away by the waves. Rock Temerian and I went out to Lido Beach to surf. The ocean was acres and acres of unbridled hell. Houses were floating past us in the water. One ride and I was grateful to get back to shore. A landlubber again. I'll be the same this weekend too.
The GOP and Fox News has assaulted President Obama's proposed reform of health care in America. They have successfully rallied their supporters with tales of death camps and communism. Democratic and Republican congresspeople have been verbally assaulted by devotees to free-market medicine. These elected representative for the most part have resembled deer in the headlight, however the other day Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank responded to a young woman's accusation linking the Democratic health campaign to the Nazi legend with characteristic bravado.
"Miss, what planet do you reside on?" Barney Frank pulled no punches and added, "Speaking with you is like having a debate with the dining room table."
Barney Frank is no dinosaur. He might love you and he might love me, but he certainly don't put up with any gruff from right-wing loonies.
The answer to the question.
Shut the fuck up.
To see youtubes version of this debate go to this URL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYlZiWK2Iy8&feature=player_embedded
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
My good friend Marge lived a long life. She attributed her years of good health to a rigid exercise regime and abstemious diet. Her athletic prowess was recognized by several women's colleges by their hiring the Maine native as physical education director. Even into her late-80s her ping-pong game was unbeatable. drop shots, wicked spins, and a power slam guaranteed her a winning streak against me that spanned decades. I thought I would never beat her, but at the age of 91 Madge suffered a stroke. Not so severe as to damage her thought process, yet she had lost a little off her serve and I challenged her to one last game.
And I beat her by one.
My niece considered my gloating over the nonagenarian 'bush', then again my niece has never beaten me. Only problem is that I'm over the half-century club and today I read off senior athletes are still competing against each other in a variety of track and field events. I had to ask myself, "Can I beat a 90 year-old in the 100 meter dash?"
Current record 22 seconds by a 95 year-old.
I went to the local track and paced out 100 meters. My friend had a stop watch. I leaned forward in a racing crouch. My favorite runner in the 60s was Tommie Smith. He won every 400 race. Even the gold at Mexico City. This race was for his black power salute. I had a reason to win.
"Ready, set, go."
I dashed from the starting line with the finish in sight even without my glasses. I counted the seconds. 50 yards in 8 seconds. 75 in 15. 100 in 20.
My friend checked the watch.
Victory and I was elated with the win.
Next stop is against the 80 year-olds and for this contest I will train like a motherfucker, because some of those old geezers are cheating with steroids. I will use none, because I'm pure as the wind-driven slush. No asterisks in my bio or race record. At least not unless I lose and then it's every man for himself.
Monday, August 17, 2009
The sky grew dark over Pattaya Bay. The monsoon wind swirled up Soi 6 like a snake. Its force knocked over chairs and tables. Farangs ran for cover. Most of the girls retreated into the bars. The strong odor of ozone promised that the rain would fall soon and fall hard. One bar girl stood her ground in the face of the storm. Ping was no scared of the wind. She was not frightened by the rain. The lithe 20 year-old was eying the older farang on the motorcycle across the street. He and the little dog in the basket of his bwerikee regulars on Soi 6. He spoke Thai and never went with any of the girls.
Today would be nice if he changed his mind.
Ping needed 6000 baht by sunset or else her boyfriend or 'fen' would be beaten by the taxi mafia who had lent him the money to fix her motorcycle. Nai had tried to pay off a debt by playing cards. Hi-lo was his game. He was not any good at it and the 2000 baht tripled without any repairs to Ping's motorcycle.
Ping was angry at Nai, but she wasn't angry enough to let him take a beating. The karaoke singer had a pretty face and she loved him. There was no one else in her life. She smiled across the street at the farang with the dog. He didn't noticed her at all.
She had 4500 in her pocketbook. Two more short-times would add 1500 to her stash. Her hitting that goal looked slim as the first drops of rain struck the street. She said a quick prayer to Mazu the sea goddess protecting her village to the south. The deity answered her within seconds. Two farang men appeared from another bar. they studied the sky, then scanned the street. Their eyes fell on Ping. She was wearing a see-through shirt, a mini-skirt, and towering stiletto heels. The two men glanced at each other and crossed the street. The farang on the bike turned his head and looked at her for the first time. His eyes were blue. The other two men walked between them. He drove away two seconds later.
"Hey, sexy man." The standard greeting was expected by visitors to the short-time street. Ping spread her legs and arched her back. Her long hair whipped in the wind and a stiff gust lifted her skirt. The two men gaped between her thighs. They belonged to Ping. Body and soul. She wasn't wearing any underwear. The last customer had bought them for 500 baht.
"You come inside. Buy drink. Have good time. Good time for me. Good time for you." Ping looked up at the sky. The clouds were a roiling black. The first drops were dotted the street. "You not get wet from rain. Only from me."
Ping pushed the door open with her hip. The two men scurried inside the bar. The narrow room was dark. The other bargirls were sharing a bottle of Pipers 100 with the owner, Frank. Only her young cousin Oom had a customer. The 18 year-old was the flavor of the month and Ping sensed her two 'kaks' studying the newcomer with interest. Another few seconds and they would be in love. Ping was having none of that. She was #1 girl at the Chic Bar.
"What you drink?" She switched on her seductive power and pulled the two men to the bar. "I want tequila. Drink tequila. Can do everything."
"Everything?" The younger man leaned closer to the bar. His hand snaked down her back. "With two men?"
"Everything with one man. Two man. All same. Only more money." Ping touched his face with a feathery palm and turned her head to gaze into the other farang's eyes. They were not old. Maybe 30. Young men were stronger than old men, but they were still only men and the Chic Bar had a time limit for short-time. One hour. Nothing more. Not unless the kak paid for more. "You pay bar fine. Only one. We go room. Pay two men for one lady. I make you finish good."
The two men agreed to her proposition. 1500 baht was hers. The mama-san smiled at her star. Ping gloated over the other girls and winked at her cousin Oom. Her customer followed Ping's path to the stairs. She winked at him to say 'wait'. Oom pouted like a schoolgirl whose milk was stolen by a bully. Ping thought 'som num nah', "Serve you right. I best girl here."
Upstairs Ping led the two men through the short-time ritual with tender professionalism; undress and shower, although their hands never touched her body, as she soaped them down and their 'ham' never got erect. Fear struck her soul. Maybe she was losing her touch and she vowed to really do everything back in the room. She really needed 1500 baht.
"What you mean everything?" Ping lay on the bed. The sheet smelled of sex. The chic Bar only changed the sheets once a day. The mama-san thought the smell of sex was good for the farangs, but not these two. "What wrong? You no like me?"
"We like you fine." The smaller one sat on the bed and reached out to the other. "But we don't really like ladies."
"Not like ladies? You want lady-boy?" The 1500 was burning in a fire.
"No, we want you to watch us have sex." The taller man pulled his friend's head back by the hair.
"And we want you to touch yourself too." The friend licked the other man's thigh.
"And you call our names. I'm Steve and he's Barry." Steve pushed Barry onto the bed and pointed to the chair. "That is our everything."
"And you pay me same you boomsi me?" Ping was used to strange requests.
"Yes." Barry moaned from beneath Steve.
"Then I do everything to tell me." Ping hopped off the bed and sat on the chair. she was so happy that she would do a good show. Maybe they would give her a tip. 500 baht. Maybe 1000. She was only 500 baht short from saving Nai. He was such a lucky boy.
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Recently The Nation reported on a growing castration (lopping off the testicles) or gaan dton trend amongst young wannabe ladyboys without funds to finance a complete sexual transformation. The castration operation costs $130US or 4400 baht and in most cases requires parental approval.
These young boys are convinced that ridding themselves of their testicles will soften their masculine features much like a eunuch of the royal courts of China, however a leading homosexual support group has called on the Medical Council of Thailand to curtail this selective surgery for under-18s, since the youths might be succumbing to peer pressure rather than acting with a true desire to join the 3rd sex.
Thailand is relatively ka-thoey friendly with gorgeous ladyboys competing on national television for beauty pageants, although the Thai TV way of life drives many ladyboys to work as streetwalkers on the sidewalks of Pattaya and Bangkok to support the constant need for drugs to maintain their female appearance. It’s a tough life and few 16 year-olds can foresee the future before they irreversibly remove their offending manhood to achieve a dream of beauty.
Castration is not only an Asian phenomena.
In the 17th century young boys were castrated by church choirs to insure the salvation of their angelic voices. Klaus Nomi strove to re-enact these castrati soprano songs in the late-70s without undergoing surgery. He was a hit with David Bowie and in the back rooms of the West Village.
Not all castrations were for beauty or art.
The Skopsi of Czarist Russia created a blasphemous sect under the belief that the road to heaven was achieved only through castration. Numbering in the hundreds of thousands the sect appealed to the common man with Utopian communities based on Christian redemption on Earth. Their leader asked the czar to castrate himself. Peter III was a little mad, but not that mad.
Neither are the young boys of Thailand.
The boys just want to be girls.
The health car debate has been kidnapped by the GOP fear-mongers. Rumors of death clinics and communism have ignited widespread paranoia. People are scared that our system will become like Canada, the UK or even worse France. One senator claimed that if the famed astro-physicist Stephen Hawking had been treated in England that he would be dead now. Stephen Hawking responded from his wheelchair that he owed his life to the UK's National Health. This statement escaped the media and Alaska's ex-governor Sarah Palin ratcheted up the temperature with her comments on death panels after misinterpreting the health bill's inclusion of end-of-life counselors to aid the nearly dearly departed make choices on living wills and treatment et al.
President Obama has entered the fray. His visits to various cities have been met with protests by the far-right who are fighting against the collapse the insurance industry's 13% profit margin and the drug companies' monopoly of meds. The president could have responded to the harsh criticism in kind. Instead he mentioned his grandmother's demise the day before the 2008 election.
"Health care is really hard. This is not easy. I'm a reasonably dedicated student to this issue. I've got a lot of really smart people around me who've been working on this for months now. There is no perfect painless silver bullet out there that solves every problem, gives everybody health care for free. There isn't. I wish there was."
Perhaps there is no silver bullet. Perhaps seeking universal health care is a waste of time. Perhaps too many people like things the way they are, but I doubt it. Even Glenn Beck of Fox News ranted against the treatment he received after a hemorrhoid operation and he has coverage.
"The system is geared to getting you out of the hospital as fast as possible."
My health care plan is not to get sick.
Or at least not in the USA.
Not until people are willing to choose between waging wars around the world or getting proper treatment at a hospital for nothing.
I know which way my vote goes.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
55 million Americans have no medical insurance. Even more are inadequate covered by their health plans. US citizens are refused basic care by Blue Cross and Aetna and the drug companies gouge the sick for the sake of profit. President Obama has opened the debate of health care reform to bring the USA in line with the rest of the civilized nations ie Canada and France and Cuba who provide their people with universal health care.
My father was feeling a little light-headed on our road trip through northern Quebec. I stopped at a small clinic. The doctor checked out my old man. A thorough exam without a Cat-scan. The doctor told my father not to eat so much. That was 7 years ago. My father is now 89.
My good friend Randy had a benign brain tumor. The French hospital operated on him twice. The bill was zero and the hospital paid for his taxi fare home.
I smashed my hands playing basketball. I visited the emergency room. The wait was 3 hours. The doctor finally examined my hand for 30 seconds. No X-ray. No meds. The bill was $250.
Americans deserve good health care, yet the right has raised the specter of Communism on this issue. Town hall meetings to debate the topic have been disrupted by angry citizens. They fear euthanasia at 65, pinko doctors, illegal immigrants getting service before them and countless other phobias placed into this brains by the shit-stirrers of the right.
Will we be charged for health care?
But America has to come to a decision on whether we want to fight a war in Iraq and Afghanistan or have access to hospitals without fear of bankruptcy or ineptitude due to the medical profession's reliance of high-technology rather than their expertise.
The Hippocratic Oath has nothing in it about profit.
America is sick.
Over 30% of the nation is overweight. Another 30% are fat. The food is crap and people are dying because of it. There can be no debate about health without discussing fast food and processed food. America stop the madness. As Jesse Ventura said about obesity.
"Push away from the table."
As for all the shouts.
It's just to sell airtime for the networks who need an issue to sell fast food.
A pox on all their house.
Most foreigners have little knowledge of Thai magic. Fewer have experienced its influence, however their ignorance doesn't diminish the power that incantations and spells hold over the Thais. Forget the 7/11s, the Benzes, the DVD players, the Thai's greatest fascination is with magic, because while money might be an turn-on for most women and beauty alluring for men, most men don't have money and most women are not beautiful. Faced with rejection, Thais resort to nam man prai or corpse oil to ensnare are enthralled their neglectful nah laks or darlings. The magic of nam man prai has never been proven, however lovesick losers swear by its power to seduce to unseductible better than a roofie, but it doesn't come cheap.
One woman shelled out 20,000 baht for the love potion, which normally cost 5000-10000 baht. Guess she asked to be super-sized.
The medicine, a small bottle of Spanish Fly never arrived at her address and she has sued the 'master of love' to return her funds. Maybe he was having a hard time obtaining the potion, since its source requires singeing the chin of a dead pregnant woman who died in an accident.
Should have been plenty of those in the aftermath of Songkran.
Nam man prai is very popular with teenagers who claim that the oil works within 7-10 days, satisfaction guaranteed. The Thai health minister is looking into allegations that magicians are actually selling nothing more than palm oil to the unsuspecting youths and these naifs should take care, for a phi prai is usually an evil spirit, for her death during childbirth creates a fearful ghost, especially if the child dies as well.
The dead spirits prey on young men for love and turn into beautiful women, luring the young men into a fatal embrace. Only a mah mod or witch can protect the young man stricken with the love of a phi prai and most of the time it's too late.
You can't fool with Mother Nature and it's even worse to mess around with the supernatural, so you love-lost folks stick to porn-surfing.
ACTUAL PASSPORT LETTER !
This letter is a thing of beauty (even if the language is a bit rough).
You definitely feel the guy's pain! An actual letter to the passport office.
I'm in the process of renewing my passport, and still cannot believe this. How is it that Radio Shack has my address and telephone number and knows that I bought a cable TV from them back in 1987, and yet, the Federal Government is still asking me where I was born and on what date.
For Christ sakes, do you guys do this by hand? My birth date you have on my social security card, and it is on all the income tax forms I've filed for the past 30 years. It is on my health insurance card, my driver's license, on the last eight damn passports I've had, on all those stupid customs declaration forms I've had to fill out before being allowed off the plane over the last 30 years, and all those insufferable census forms that are done at election times.
Would somebody please take note, once and for all, that my mother's name is Maryanne, my father's name is Robert and I'd be absolutely astounded if that ever changed between now and when I die!!!!!!
I apologize; I'm really pissed off this morning. Between you an' me, I've had enough of this bullshit! You send the application to my house, then you ask me for my address.
What is going on? You have a gang of Neanderthal assholes working there! Look at my damn picture. Do I look like Bin Laden? I don't want to dig up Yasser Arafat, for Christ sakes. I just want to go and park my ass on a sandy beach.
And would someone please tell me, why would you give a shit whether I plan on visiting a farm in the next 15 days? If I ever got the urge to do something weird to a chicken or a goat, believe you me, I'd sure as hell not want to tell anyone!
Well, I have to go now, 'cause I have to go to the other end of the city and get another copy of my birth certificate, to the tune of $60. Would it be so complicated to have all the services in the same spot to assist in the issuance of a new passport the same day? Nooooo, that'd be to damn easy and maybe makes sense.
You'd rather have us running all over the place like chickens with our heads cut off, then find some asshole to confirm that it's really me on the damn picture - you know, the one where we're not allowed to smile! (bureaucratic ' morons) Hey, you know why we can't smile We're totally pissed off!
Signed - An Irate Citizen.
P.S. Remember what I said above about the picture and getting someone to confirm that it's me. Well, my family has been in this country since 1776. I have served in the military for something over 30 years and have had security clearances up the ying yang.. However, I have to get someone 'important' to verify who I am - you know, someone like my doctor WHO WAS BORN AND RAISED IN INDIA?!
You Sure In The Hell Should Know Who.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Most of us don't speak Thai. I speak it badly, but the best way to learn is by learning new words.
I use http://www.thai2english.com/
Comes in handy and if you can't get to the words fast enough during an argument with your mia then you can throw the computer against the wall.
While in Thailand, do as the Thais do.
ps a pumpkin falling from a 50 story building can striking a human without killing them. Its skin is only microcentimeters thick. Not so with a computer, so be careful about tossing our the computer in a rage.
smashing pumpkin = ta-laai faktong
I worked for 17 years as a diamond salesman for 13 years on West 47th Street in Manhattan. Our company specialized in diamonds, however we sold anything; watches, chains, pearls, rubies, emeralds, and sapphires. We bought anything too and had a good client base since we were relatively honest.
A side deal here and there helps pay for the lights.
At least once a month the odd customer would appear at the shop with a bag of precious stones. Their story had been told by other travelers. Their eyes sparkled about getting a special deal from a jewelry shop overseas. We patiently nodded and pulled out a velvet tray. "Let's see your treasures."
Maybe they were lucky.
The customer would proudly pour out their investment, expecting oohs and ahs. "So what do you think it’s worth?"
Light soon faded from the genius' face, since the stones were practically worthless.
Inevitably the customer would angrily declare that we didn't know anything about semi-precious gems.
"Go see if you can get $1000 for the stones."
He'd huff out and return an hour later. "Will you give me $1000."
"Then why you say $1000 before?"
"Just to prove to you that we do know what about gems. Sorry, but you've been had."
No one wanted these stones, because the customer had been defrauded by unscrupulous dealers in Brazil, Columbia, Sri Lanka, SE Asia, Europe or the USA. Playing suckers for a ride is an international game and depends on the pigeon's greed to grease the way for his fleecing.
Bangkok is notorious for preying on hapless tourists i.e. rubes.
The scam classically runs this way.
En route to a famed temple a taxi or tuk-tuk driver will approach a group of tourists helpfully telling them that the temple is shut for a national prayer holiday, but he knows of another Buddha nearby. "40 baht. Very close."
Typical tout car at the walls to the Emerald Buddha.
Most tourists are unaccustomed to walking in the tropical heat.
A moment of weakness for free AC ride and they're soon speeding to a 'government gem expo'.
"A friend in your hometown needs them to sell. Maybe you can help us out by bringing them to him. Make twice your money."
Greed seizes hold of the unsuspecting tourist. "Twice my money?"
"Maybe three times if you sell on your own, but my friend will give you twice for sure." The government official even calls his friend, who tells them he will fax them at their hotel a promissory note to purchase the stones.
"Not want your money now. Only deposit." the government official takes a 50% deposit and hands over a receipt. "Come back later for gems. One month okay. If have problem give you back all money. 90%."
They put in writing.
Everyone is happy.
If the tourist is lucky he hears about the scam before his departure from Bangkok. If not he learns about it from someone like my jewelry store. Tears and gnashing of teeth as the dream of twice their money evaporates like a water on an Isaan plateau in summer.
Any arrests ever for this?
If the tourist shows up with the tourist police demanding money, then the dealers refund 90% as agreed. Instant profit.
Before you drop a few thousand onto the deal of a lifetime, google the name of the shop or gem scams Bangkok. The names change of these stores, so better to obey the old adage.
Anything that sounds too good to be true usually is too good to be true.
A SPANISH Teacher was explaining to her class that in Spanish, unlike English, nouns are designated as either masculine or feminine.
'House' for instance, is feminine: 'la casa.'
'Pencil,' however, is masculine: 'el lapiz.'
A student asked, 'What gender is 'computer'?'
Instead of giving the answer, the teacher split the class into two groups, male and female, and asked them to decide for themselves whether computer' should be a masculine or a feminine noun. Each group was asked to give four reasons for its recommendation.
The men's group decided that 'computer' should definitely be of the feminine gender ('la computadora'), because:
1. No one but their creator understands their internal logic;
2 The native language they use to communicate with other computers is incomprehensible to everyone else;
3. Even the smallest mistakes are stored in long term memory for possible later retrieval; and
4. As soon as you make a commitment to one, you find yourself spending half your paycheck on accessories for it.
The women's group, however, concluded that computers should be Masculine ('el computador'), because:
1. In order to do anything with them, you have to turn them on;
2. They have a lot of data but still can't think for themselves;
3. They are supposed to help you solve problems, but half the time they ARE the problem; and
4. As soon as you commit to one, you realize that if you had waited a little longer, you could have gotten a better model.
A female friend from Palm Beach sent this and she claimed the women won this contest, however the French think otherwise, for the gender of the French word for computer is masculine; computer ordinateur (m). Guess that solves the debate.
AT LEAST FOR MEN.
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Soi 6 was never quiet day or night. Motorcycles roared down the narrow street. Western and Thai music blasted from a score of competing sound systems. The conversations between the girls were in loud Thai. The dialogues with the farang men braving the gauntlet of bars running from Beach Road to 2nd Road switched to shouts in bad English.
"Hey, sexy man. You want sexy lady." The 23 year-old bar girl on the stoop of Chic bar had yelled this same phrase over a hundred times in the last two hours. Ping had hooked two western men. Both had gone inside. One to have drinks and another for short-time upstairs. Her long silky hair and large breasts was a magnet to the lust-filled foreigners.
A shy 18 year-old in the back row of the girls on the terrace watched Ping's every move. This was Oom's first day. Ping was her 3rd cousin on her father's mother's side. Her brother had been arrested for ja-bah. 15 tua or pills. He was in provincial prison. The police wanted bail of 50,000 baht. Oom was the youngest and prettiest girl left at home. Her parents decided that her beauty would save her brother.
Two farangs stared at her. They were bigger than any man in her village. One of them larger than her father's pig. Her olive eyes dropped to the ground. She was not a virgin. Her boyfriend had taken his pleasure with her after drinking too much beer the previous Songkran. He left her for another girl a week later.
"Your brother stay in 'kook' long time, you stay so 'iang aii'." Ping pulled her out of the chair. "You shy family no pay police. Girl like you make big money. Go home fast. Forget here."
"I scared farang." Oom's long hair furled down her bare back like a black sail snapping in the wind. Her stick-thin legs disappeared up into her sparkling mini-skirt. She weighted at most 41 kilos.
"Farang man. Thai man same. Want lady short-time. Pee standing up. Lying down." Ping had been in Pattaya 5 years. She had once gone to Switzerland and another time to France. Neither man lasted more than 6 months. Ping was 100% Thai. Without green papaya salad or sum tam in her belly, she would lose her soul. "Men come here to see new girl. No one Soi 6 more new than you. I help you get good man."
Several men approached Ping. They smelled of rotten meat and unwashed feet. Ping said Oom was too good for them. Two young men asked if both girls wanted to go inside. They had nice smiles, but Ping shook her head. Afterward her cousin explained, "Young man fuck long time. Steal your power. Old man better. Not strong."
"How old?" Some of the men staring at her looked old enough to be dead. Ping knew many of them by name. She was very 'hit' or popular with these white-haired elders. The owner of the bar, Frank, was old, but he never touched any of his girls. He called her 'Liebsten' and
"Last week I go with man. He 78. Not want sex. Only want to talk. One hour. Better he have sex. Faster. Not steal my time." Ping spoke hard as the gravel-packed road outside her house. She had two babies from her boyfriend. They lived together here. He worked as an agent for a ja-bah dealer.
"I still scared." Oom didn't like the way Pi-et studied her body. She could read her mind. One day he would try something. One day when Ping was with customer long-time. She couldn't not stop him. He was a bad man.
"Not scared. Here comes your #1." Ping nodded her head toward a tall farang. His skin was as white as paper. His pants were pulled high over his waist. Several bar girls laughed at his appearance.
"I no like."
"No like. This not TV movie with happy ending. This Soi 6. Your brother in jail. Family need money. Drac easy customer. All he want is kiss your underwear. No sex." Ping whispered as if she didn't want the other bar girls to hear this trade secret.
"Not want sex?"
"No, he kiss your bikini. He not take off his bikini. One hour 2000 baht."
"2000 baht?" No one in her village made that much money in one hour. Not even one day, except for agents selling ja-bah or the police or the headman who expected money from everyone.
"One hour. Get money after he finish." Ping called to Drac. He came over. Ping explained that this was Oom's first day. Drac smiled with yellow teeth. He smelled nice, despite his sick appearance. Ping pushed her side and told the mama-san that Drac was taking her upstairs. he asked her several questions going up the steps to the second floor. She nodded and he said, "You really are new?"
"No kohok. first day."
"You ever be with a farang before?"
"Never." She opened
"Then today is my lucky day."
The mama-san had told her that you can see if a man's penis is sick if he is naked, and she said they had to take a shower. Drac he shook his head. "We not have sex. No reason to have shower."
Oom didn't understand why, but started to take off her clothes. Drac waved his hand and pushed Oom onto the head, then tugged her short skirt over her waist. He moaned several times as he undressed down to his underwear. His skin was the same texture as a plucked chicken. She shut her eyes when he spread her legs with his hands. His kisses on her underwear were bot. His breath fast. The hour lasted forever, but in the end he stood up and gave her 3000 baht.
"For you to have good luck." He dressed in 5 seconds and accompanied her to the bar. "Maybe I'll see you again. I like skinny girls."
The mama-san congratulated Oom's initiation and Ping entered the bar beaming with pride. The owner, Frank, looked sad and said, "Drinks for liebsten and her cousin, die schone Ping."
"Two tequilas." Ping held up her fingers and wai-ed the old German. The mama-san poured white liquid into small glasses. It smelled the same as 'lao khao' or rice whiskey. It was fire in her mouth and acid in her throat. Ping laughed at her younger cousin. "You will like it soon enough."
"What is skinny?" Oom coughed with her head spinning. She never drank lao.
"Pom and many farangs like girls pom. You are big success."
Oom nodded her head, for while this wasn't the success she dreamed of as a child, she was a little closer to getting her brother out of jail. She was good in math and did the numbers in her head. Only 17 more times with Drac and she could be a young girl again. Maybe not in her moo-ban, but in Krueng-Thep anything was possible. After all Bangkok was the city of dreams. Pattaya was another story and one best told after the fact.