Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Thailand: Part 1 - Its about Thai-me

First and foremost, I would like to apologize for the terrible, horrible, awful-osity that is the title of this post.

Ok, now to minor matters.

Being Late

I know I said tomorrow... but what I really meant was... you know... the time schedule you use when your mom tells you to "come on in! its time for dinner!" and you say "ok, I'll be there in five more minutes"... and you really mean FIFTY five more minutes, or at least, as long as you can go before marches right out there, mister, and you just wait till I get my hands on you...

um... yeah. you know. that kind of I-swear-that-never-happened-to-me kind of childhood way.

Those kind of five minutes.... that kind of tomorrow.

Travelling with Brent 101: preparedness schmeparedness.

Um... so I went to Thailand. And it was swell.

I'll share just a brief anecdote to start us off and we'll do the rest... um... tomorrow.

We'll fast forward through the madness that is my traveling style... you can surely imagine. I do research on the places I go inasmuch as finding them somewhere on a globe and confirming my flight. Sometimes, if I'm in a good and/or bored mood, I might go so far as to book my hotel, but I do kind of enjoy just showing up in a place and seeing where I end up. Having done this in both Paris (where I don't really speak the language and everyone automatically hates you because they think your American... or they just hate you because thier Parisians and they hate everything....um... yeah.. ixnay on the idetrack-say, hey?) and in Amsterdam, where getting high and watching people fuck on a rotating bed is frowned on by the cops/general populace to about the same degree you get frowned on when you don't cover your mouth while yawning. Which... made it ... hard to find a hostel... room?

Ah, shut up brain, or I'll stab you with a Q-tip.

So anyway, I didn't book shit. I just ended up there with the name of a hotel from my co-worker and a vague idea that I wanted to chillax and see some stuff.

385 Long Lost Brothers

I actually didn't pull in until close to ten or eleven, so that meant that my "sightseeing" was pretty much a taxi ride and wandering around through the streets of bangkok being crazy. Met some cool folk, and found out that I actually have 385 brothers that I didn't know! In fact, all of them are pushy thai salesmen (which, yes... if you know me well, you may not be surprised to find out). So, every time someone wanted to shake my hand, suddenly it was like "My Brother!! and they then try to physically man-handle you into their store.

Of course, don't you think that my 385 brothers were big believers in customer service or whatnot once you were in their 385 stores, but boy oh boy did they ever work hard to get you in the door. The price of any one object is actually dependent on an interesting scale called "how much can I pull out of this foolish, foolish white boy". I noticed this when someone tried to charge me 1900 baht (about $50) for three t-shirts. I laughed in his face without a moment of hesitation... so his grin slipped a bit and he offered them for 190 baht each ($5)... I ended up haggling him down to 150 a shirt (because playing games with people's livelihood is a lot more fun once you realize that if he's really going to lose the money he's trying to save for his poor, sick grandma, he isn't going to sell you shit. So...bargain as hard as you feel like).

Think Pink.
So, the next day I met Sophie, my comrade in textbooks and sketchnanigans (and fellow veteran of many a Tokyo coffee shop) at the airport. She came a day later than me for mundane and unfunny reasons that I shall not even bother with, because talking about someone else on MY blog would open an entire can of non-inflating-my-overlarge-ego worms that no-one wants a part of.

So anyway... I picked up Sophie and we hightailed it to a tailor to get fitted into some custom threads. Which we will come back to.

But..if..., um...ever... a friend of yours tells you that he wants some new shirts in a certain silk fabric, and you find that fabric only in pink, and your other friend tells you that he'll look gay, and even there is nothing wrong with looking gay, well, except for that kind of false-advertising, sending the wrong kind of message kind of way...then maybe you shouldn't go ahead and ignore the girl-advice and buy your small-town Canadian friend a custom tailored pink silk shirt for the dance bar. Just so you know. I heard about something like that happening, so... you just watch out. If ... um ... you're ever in Thailand looking at ... pink silk shirts.

Ok. its nearly 5 am as I finish this, and I am trying to catch up on my sleep debt, rather than run up a massive balance that resembles my Visa card. So...

If you can read this line, I haven't edited out the typos yet. Sorry. If grammar/spelling are important to your blogging experience, please return at a later date.

Or don't, cause I'm leaving that line at the end, and you already burned at least five minutes of your life that you'll never get back. Sucker.


Anonymous said...

I couldn't have come up with a better headline myself. Take that as you will: insult or compliment. :D

- Fish

Neil Glazebrook said...

I solved all "come to dinner" problems by telling my mother that if she gave me a five-minute warning rather than "come now!" then I would be able to be ready to come to dinner when she wanted. Amazing, eh?

And in Sweden, at least the school I went to, there was a long-standing tradition of "academic time." Which meant "15 minutes after whenever you say it's supposed to happen." So any schedule that said that class began at 1pm really meant it began at 115pm. And this was accepted everywhere in the institution.