Back Home in Bangkok, Part III

After Part II

November 2004

Wednesday, November 24, 2004 (pre-journal)

This afternoon p'Kig's daughter visited us. Her name is Koy (age 16) and she has not seen her mother in about three years. But, she is really looking forward to visiting her in Florida.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Fans of the Thai-Obayashi construction project will be pleased to see that much has been done since THOCBDC made an early visit to the site. It seems as if everywhere our camera points there are new buildings going up.


Meanwhile, closer to home, work is inching upward on what will become the Millennium Hilton. It is due to open in October, 2005. Seasoned readers will remember that this was at one time going to be a Sofitel hotel.

More than three years ago THOCBDC explored this 'ghost ship'. At the time there was much talk that the place was inhabited by spirits; that being the reason why construction was halted.

THOCBDC even suggested that the place was top-heavy and might tip into the river unless it got an immediate trim.

When all else seemed to fail the Patpong Corkscrew Club took over the premises and made it the world headquarters for the PCC.

P (something) S: The other day THOCBDC 'exposed' what appeared to be an invasion of body snatchers. Actually the cracking open of the graves was not as insidious an act as THOCBDC first thought.

According to this 'tacked up' notice, the bodies were removed to higher grounds ... to prevent the corpses from becoming damaged by seepage. The transfer had nothing to do with the fact that this old Christian cemetery sits on (lies under?) very choice property.

Thursday, November 25, 2004 (pre-journal)

Recently THOCBDC has attracted, in its readership, a large number of lawyers trained in the Common Law. In particular, we now have a swollen subspecialty: fans of "future interests".

Reader Powell from Berkeley writes:

Can we start a new thread? One starting with: "A to B, remainder to C."

OK! But, how can we complicate this? (*)

(*) Webmaster Paul ... you were Law Review ... take the first step past C.

Thursday, November 25, 2004 (Thanksgiving Day - USA, Ordinary Day - Thailand)

"Thanksgiving is an emotional holiday. People travel thousands of miles to be with people they only see once a year, and then discover once a year is way too often."
- Johnny Carson

We have been watching with interest the 'construction' of Baan Sathorn-Chaophraya, a riverside condominium. It is diagonally across the river from where we live now; in short, a pretty good location. So it came as a surprise to us to find out (via yesterday's post) that it is now "Fully Complete, ready to move in". A tiny footnote says "as of the end of 2004". Thirty-seven days and counting.

PS to Thanksgiving

For our Thanksgiving dinner we found a Golden Arches that had its trademark clown giving the traditional Thai "Wai": Globalization has made it so much easier for all of us who are forced to live in foreign lands. Mr. Bush is so lucky ... Air Force One probably has a wad of Real Macs on board all of his flights; even in the toilet areas ... (should the need to bite arise while reading the Reader's Digest) ... and I bet that the Secret Service has Big Mac kitchens hidden in every place that he is forced to visit. God bless his luck.

Friday, November 26, 2004 (pre-journal) [LOI KRATHONG in Thailand]

Reader K. from Arizona (USA) once owned the Old China Hand bar on Soi Cowboy. THOCBDC recently took you there, though it is now named Sam's 2000.

Reader K. also lived not too far away from it, on Soi 11 off Sukhumvit. Though he gave me the exact address of the building, I couldn't find any building that sported that number. So, I just fired away in the neighborhood. Maybe he'll recognize his old place; or where it used to be.

PS to Reader K.'s neighborhood:

Within a few meters of where K. lived there is an obviously new building whose function is not self-evident. There are no signs on the door. Any ideas?

Saturday, November 27, 2004

At our place last night: family and fireworks for Loy Krathong.

Sunday, November 28, 2004 (pre-journal)

I am repeating a bit of this from 2000 ... but, I am looking for some data for 2004: were Hemlines Up or Down, was Bordeaux Good or Poor, who won the World Series (*), was the Stock-market Down or Up? In short, did The Economist do better than Gallup and the others? Fill in the blanks for me ... revise the percentages, please.

The folks over at The Economist start by making a convincing case for ignoring the conventional pollsters when it comes to predicting the winner in American presidential elections. That's not to say that the paper expects its readers to approach every White House bid with 50/50 glasses on their noses. No, not at all! It just suggests that we use a few new tools that are a lot more objective than a straightforward question that queries, "If the election was held today, would you vote for Bush or Kerry?"

OK, we've tossed out Gallup and others. What do we use in their place?

Christie's wine auctions ... Vogue ... USAToday (Sports Section) ... Business Week. Yes, that's it! Using just these four you can get it completely right every first Tuesday in November.

Did Bordeaux produce good wine?

Are hemlines 'up' or 'down'?

Who won the World Series?

Did the stock market go 'up' or 'down'?

So, what does this all mean?

If Christie's auction of wine 'futures' is good for the makers of claret, it's good for the Democrats (Kerry).

If skirt lengths fall the Republicans will be happy.

If the Yankees win the World Series the GOP is pleased. In fact it's pleased if any American League team takes the series.

Finally, bear markets are fine for the Democrats.

For the last half-century (ever since Ike beat Stevenson in '52) these 'things' have individually yielded a success rate of between 66 and 75 percent.

(*) I do not follow baseball. Who won? Was it Saint Louis ... and are they part of the National League? Or, did the Red Sox win ... are they American? It is a silly game anyway.

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Reader Derek (*) writes (in reply to my "How are you?"):

We're getting ready for the snow here, should arrive any day now. We had a brief whiteout some weeks ago, but that was somewhat freakish and has since melted off.

Remember I was asking about cameras for my girlfriend a while back? Well I ended up getting a Canon Powershot S1 IS ... it takes great pictures, its only weakness is a poor LCD window.

My mother-in-law came out for a visit, and we had an early "Christmas". One of my presents was this cedar birdfeeder. This little fella showed up pretty much the next day. Shelly took the pic from the door to the deck.


(*) Derek is the creator of the vertical left margin 'tape' on my home page, the Bangkok headquarters of the Patpong Corkscrew Club, the strange creature who lived in the bowels of the French Embassy, a balloon's last flight ... plus many other things found here on THOCBDC.

Monday, November 29, 2004 (pre-journal)

Last Friday THOCBDC posted a dozen or so photographs of the area near the foot of Sukhumvit Soi 11, the former residential area of Reader K. One of the photos (the sixth in the series) shows a building with six porches. Apparently, this was his home. Anyway, today I received this e-mail from him:

"The 6 balcony place is definitely our old place!.. I knew it.. But Ket had her doubts... We lived on the back side of the middle set of balconies... My friend Dwayne lived on the top floor... I had an early PC (80K) hooked up in the apt... Ket used to play video games and she would yelp and screech when she got killed or shot... Unbeknownst to me... Folks in the bldg thought I was a woman beater... Till one day I showed up from being out all day and there was all of this yelping coming down the stairs... The owner asked me who was beating Ket if it wasn't me... We started leaving the door open when she was playing on the computer! All of the housekeepers and the owners kids would sit in the hall outside our apt and they'd yelp in unison when something got blown up."

Monday, November 29, 2004

This morning's Thai Rhat ... one of Thailand's great national dailies ... carried two particularly bloody stories.

In the first one a motorcyclist while in a street race lost control of his machine; the resulting damage was the loss of his head. But, a resourceful rescue crew managed to find it. Unfortunately, the attempt to reattach it was not successful. However, it appears from the smiles of these good Samaritans that their effort had a lighter moment.

The second death was caused when a giant homemade firecracker exploded next to the celebrant's face. Though the 'bang' did not decapitate him, it did cave-in the side of his head and unhinge his jaw.

Both men are now probably wanting a few jars or tubes of Wound FillerTM; a useful last effort cream made by the sponsors of Six Feet Under."(*)

(*) In the meantime Morton's darkroom dot-maker was employed as a fill-in.


In Derek's e-mail, posted here on the 28th, he mentioned that he had a girl friend and a mother-in-law. No, I did not catch the 'incongruity' of the concept until Paul mentioned it. It just shows how far America has slipped off the liberal map. Now, we just need to know more about Derek's wife and his girl friend's mother.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

The Thai Rhat (one of Thailand's most popular broadsheets) may be starting a circulation war. Yesterday's gore was below the fold; today's is far north of the fold.

But, you ask: "Who cares where the picture was, what happened to him?"

He was in the process of burglarizing a house when the owner woke up. The terribly pissed off owner then tossed the guy out through an open window. The pointy fence ended his day.


Ning is back at The Oriental's Fitness Center; this time as a guest. She'll be in Bangkok until the middle of January; after that she'll return to her ship. If you go the bottom of this page and type "Ning" in the GOOGLE bar you'll get dozens of sites. Ning has been in these pages for almost five years.

By the way, yesterday at 11:05 am, Ning turned 30 years old.


Susan has experienced the real danger of "chat rooms".

Next: December

Search WWW Search