Archive for October, 2006

Weekend Getaways: Koh Chang

Whilst Bangkok has everything a city dweller needs, it’s good to escape every now and then and experience the other parts this country has to offer. The benefit of living in Bangkok is that you are only a short distance from some of the most amazing beaches in the world.

http://bangkok.metblogs.com/archives/images/2006/10/koh_chang_sunset-thumb.jpg
© DC 2006
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Halloweeeen!

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Do you have your costumes ready?

It’s time for everyone’s favorite pagan holiday. The best part about Halloween falling on a Tuesday is that parties start on Friday and last four days! They don’t seem to do trick or treating in Thailand, but in Bangkok there are plenty of options to dress up. Here are just a few of them :

Friday — Time Out Haunted House and Costume Contest. Winner wins 2 round trip tickets to Bali. The Haunted House theme will last until the 30th. RCA

Saturday — Annual Castlevania Costume Party at Astra, presented by Bacardi, with DJ Amnesia. 500B, 400B with costume

Sunday — Halloween at Q Bar. The Bar will take on the theme of Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are. 700B w/ 2 drinks. They’ll have trick or treating for everyone, but if you ask me, you shouldn’t get a treat unless you’re in costume.

Tuesday — Halloween on Dope at BedSupper. DJ Kenny Dope Gonzalez. 1,250B w/ 2 drinks

Tuesday — Club Professionals Halloween Party at Cafe Democ. The theme is bright colors, no black!

Tuesday — Premeire of Chivas’ weekly “New York Times Party” at Santika. Registration required. “Dress fierce”

Silpakorn University Festival

the return of the long-awaited SU-Festival.

even if you don’t partake in the workshops, drop by the phra sumen fort during the eveining. an excellent venue for many events, including aliiance francais’ fête de la musique.

i love the general buzz and the atmospheric feel of the whole area, especially being next to the river–a far cry from digusting nightclubs packed with truck drivers on holiday and their 200baht portable fucktoys and morons that validate themselves by coming to thailand thinking it’ll help shape their pitiful existence into “something”. and ofcourse, retards that go to art/movie exhibitions at the fucking met bar.

one of the most delicious mataba restaurants is just across the street.

For more details: www.smo.su.ac.th/sufest.html

27 Oct Performing Art – Short Film – Animation
28 Oct Music
ี่29 Oct Fashion

from 27-29 October 2006
Events organised by Silpakorn university.
Art events, performances, mini jazz,
Percussion concerts, Art workshop, Handmade gifts
market by students, etc

Open air area, free of charge.

Place : Pom Phra Sumen (Phra Sumen fort) on Phra Athit
Road. by the Chaopraya River. Near Khaosan road.

From 1 PM til 9 PM, 27-29 October 2006

Corruption Doesn’t Discriminate

WASHINGTON (CNN) — Half of all Americans believe most members of Congress are corrupt — a figure that has risen 12 points since the start of the year — and more than a third think their own representative is crooked, according to a new poll released Thursday by CNN.

Thailand’s potlicians don’t have to feel as bad now, even the citizens of the “model” democracy think their represenatives are crooks.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/10/19/congress.poll/index.html

Crocodile Alert in the provinces

Seems that it’s not only the traffic that could end up killing you, The Fisheries Department has placed a warning to all residents in the provinces to be on the lookout for escaped crocodiles, ones that have been illegally bred, as they are now on the loose.

http://bangkok.metblogs.com/archives/images/2006/10/crocodiles-thumb.jpg© Daniel Cuthbert

Now growing up in South Africa taught me one thing, these animals are pretty good at staying unnoticed, so how in hells name are people supposed to spot them?
Department director general Charanthada Kannasut added that the crocodiles would approach humans because they are used to being fed by keepers.

Chatuchak Market: Shoes, Cock Fighting and Pizza

Every tourist book lists Chatuchak market (Skytrain Mo Chit Station) as a must see place in Bangkok, and as the worlds biggest market, who can blame them?. Where else can you buy curtains, vintage Nike Jordan 1’s and watch cock fighting taking place?

The Market is open on weekends from 7am till 6pm, although it’s recommended that you visit it early or late in the afternoon as otherwise you end up sweating more than humanly possible. Whilst many guidebooks give you a map, just forget about even following it and explore. There are hundreds of alleyways with stalls containing some of the most amazing stuff one can expect to find.
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Jay Z rocks the kok

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Fresh back from retirement, Jay Z played BEC Tero Hall Wedsday night with Rhianna and Thaitanium. Jay Z is the latest of a pretty impressive list Bangkok concerts have been drawing on (Franz Ferdinand, Oasis, 50 Cent, the Black Eyed Peas). I’m sure this means Bangkok must have some drawing power for music superstars besides just the money; it’s notorious partytown reputation for one. For 3,000 baht a pop, the crowd was pretty impressive, but nowhere near the turnout he’s probably used to.

The hall was decorated with graffiti, a half basketball court and motorcycles to make it resemble an NYC hood (although not one that I’ve ever seen). There was a “Brooklyn,” a “Harlem” (where they were actually selling fried chicken, I don’t know if that was on purpose) and so on.
http://bangkok.metblogs.com/archives/images/2006/10/Brooklyn3-thumb.jpg(I Gotta Represent!)

Rhianna, with legs up to her neck, opened to mediocre effect. But Jay Z’s songlist read like a Billboard’s Top 20 Hip Hop. People say they saw Beyonce watching from behind stage (which made me sad, because she didn’t come out to sing Crazy In Love!)
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Jay Z’s sidekick Bleek sported this great T-shirt I’ve never seen before, but everyone in Bangkok should want!!Bangkok%20City.jpg

Suvarnabhumi: Bangkok’s newest shopping mall

and one hell of an airport!

Suvarnabhumi has been open for a month now, and undoubtedly tens of thousands have passed through it already. What are your thoughts?
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Mine, well, Don Muang was old, in fact it was the oldest airport in Asia, in one of the busiest hubs. It had to go. When I went through Suvarnabhumi things went very smoothly, so I don’t have many complaints save the trip back. The taxi ride took an hour and a half and cost 500Baht, including five tolls just to get to Phayathai (where, ironically, a new metro transit line was supposed to connect the airport. Officials seem to have stopped even pretending this will happen).
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Thais love superlatives. Unfortunatley, Saudi Arabia’s King Fahd airport is the largest in the world. But don’t worry, because entering Suvarnabhumi, you are promptly welcomed to “the LONGEST airport in the world.” I thought that was pretty desperate, and frankly Suvarnabhumi doesn’t need a superlative, it’s spectacular enough. It’s very avant-garde. Roof trellis rap around the tubular terminal which has almost 360 views. There is lots of exposed cement beams. But I didn’t understand all these volcanic formations in the middle of the airport’s courtyard…
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But the most apparent thing about Suvarnabhumi, is that it looks and acts like a shopping mall. Passing customs, you walk through shopping areas the way gift shops are placed after rides at Disney World. There will even be (of course) karaoke bars. But this is no surprise for Bangkok, a city abnormally obsessed with malls. …Did you know a few months ago the UK sold its Phloen Chit embassy to Central Group for the development of yet another mall? This along a strip that is already lined back to back with malls (west to east: MBK, Discovery Center, Siam Center, Paragon, Central World, Gaysorn, Central Chitlom)

Cabinet rejects alcohol control bill

The Cabinet today sent the Alcoholic-Beverage Control Bill back for further discussions among the relevant authorities, in what seems a massive boost for Thailands image reconstruction program. Had this bill been passed, there would have been strict guidelines that controlled all aspects of alcoholic-beverage sales in Thailand, including a downright ban on any person under 25 years from purchasing alcoholic drinks.It seems that the same questions everyone on this blog raised about the bill, were also viewed by cabinet members on how they would identify underage drinkers and also the effects of having such a ban in place.

The Cabinet has assigned the Education, Commerce, Industry, Social Development and Human Security ministries to send their representatives for further discussions on the bill.

Changing Thailand’s Image

His Majesty the King recently told the new members of Thailand’s interim government to rectify its tainted image. Natural disasters like the current floods and lack of action on behalf of the government hasn’t helped matters at all.

This got me thinking about how exactly the current governments actions are going away from what His Majesty the King asked them to do, namely repair the countries image in the eyes of the International community. My question to you is, what would you like this government do to improve the image of Thailand?

My current picks would be:

Update: Seems the Cabinet must read our blog, as this alcohol bill has just been rejected. There you have it, blogs do make a difference!

– Rethink this ban on alcohol for under 25’s. It is not inline with other countries and gives the impression that Thailand’s leaders are out of touch with today’s issues. Alcohol abuse is a problem that can be addressed by education and not by brute force thinking

– Understand that tourism is a massive earner for any country. Whilst thinking that smelly backpackers don’t give anything to the economy, think about what happens to the industries that support the backpackers.

– Sort out the problem of Thailand being a haven for paedophiles. It is not acceptable and these sick degenerates should be denied access. Work with foreign governments to work together to stop the abuse happening.

– The martial law still in place is doing more damage to Thailand’s image than any other problem. There is no need for it in a modern society and this should be rectified quickly.

– As much as Johnny foreigner likes Nana Plaza and Soi Cowboy, they hardly do anything to concrete foreign image of Thailand. Not ever Thai woman is a street whore who loves to go Short Time Room with men.

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