Friday, September 27, 2013

Funny signs/9

156783 people like this, only Mark Zuckerberg is not so sure about it...(Boracay, Philippines)
Cupid was here (Florence, Italy)
You! (Bangkok, Thailand)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Yet another cynical post: the Thai prostitution myth

Penis rock and vagina rick at sunset, how romantic! (Koh Samui, Thailand)

This is the cynical post that I promised here.

Next time I see one of those cheese TV reports on prostitution in Thailand I swear I am going to puke. Of course the majority of western journalists are good professionals and I wouldn't dare say anything about them or their work. There are some, though, who should have their pens, laptops and tablets confiscated. A bunch of low level word-workers who rely on trite myths and stereotypes to justify the salaries their editors give them.
Those that for years have told us the story of the poor Thai girls taken advantage of or even enslaved by old and slimy sexual tourists are among the most sly.
It's hard for me to believe that they have really been in Thailand, collected evidence, looked around, tried to understand and finally got it all wrong that way. It must somehow be intentional. They must have based what they wrote on hearsay, relying on some urban legend or isolated tear-jerking case in order to achieve some sensationalist effect and exploit the overwhelming Western hypocrisy. Reading Michel Houllebecq could provide some inspiring ideas on the subject. On the other hand it is quite unlikely that over the years I've only come across exceptional cases. I got to an apparently arrogant yet unequivocal conclusion: I just know more than them about this subject.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

How to fuck up a nice place - Koh Samui, Thailand

Beach party
My fingertips are itching. I need to write a couple of cynical posts, and the first one is going to be about the Thai island of Koh Samui: the perfect example of a heavenly place that have been fucked up in just a few years. 
I've been coming to Chaweng beach for about ten years. I remember well the impression I got the first time I got here: a beautiful bay with white sand, clear water and tropical vegetation. Lively at night: a few pubs with live music and screens for sport events, a couple of discos where you could spot a certain number of hookers but also a lot of "normal" customers, including Thais, and a few bars. The general atmosphere was still very simple, in line with the rural origins of the country: a lot of street food stalls, mototaxis that could take you anywhere for a small fee, songthaews - something in between a taxi and a bus - authentic local markets, nice people, some funny odd ones, smiles, coziness. I liked it a lot. I'm neither the no-electricity-faraway-island type of tourist nor the luxury resort one. Koh Samui was just the right mix.