Bangkok, May 2010

After April

May 1-7, 2010

Saturday, May 1, 2010 (Pre-Journal)

Saturday, May 1, 2010 (Labour Day in Thailand)

GURU, the Bangkok Post magazine supplement, ran an article about Thai 'bumper strips' and what they all mean. I had no idea what I was broadcasting from the rear of our Florida cars. With respect to our Bangkok cars ... well ... I think it's about buyer remorse when it comes to colour.*

* As GURU says: "'This car is blue', this sticker asserts, although it is usually found on cars that are any colour but blue. Confused? Is this an existential statement like 'There is no spoon'? These stickers are not limited to blue, and are actually applied by superstitious drivers, who have discovered post-purchase that their new car is not coloured correctly according to astrology. Since stickers are cheaper than a fresh paint job, simply calling a car the right colour is apparently sufficient."

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Locally things are not getting better. *

Yes, and there is a fear of a civil war as well.

* Geo cachers are now finding it more difficult to reach one of my caches.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Just one city block away from our Bangkok home there is a prickly barricade that has effectively closed down one of the major streets in the world*. If you lift your binoculars you can see additional pointy barriers further along this road. OK, there are no cops or Red Shirts on either side of this tire (tyre) border right now ... but, the folks who hate and love this sort of thing are only a cell phone** away.

* Well, at least in the shopping world.

** Or, Tweet or Facebook.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 (Pre-journal)

A letter to the editor of The Bangkok Post.*

* I know she is joking.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Today, while checking out the latest activity on the Red Shirt front located under the SkyTrain tracks I stumbled upon a very unique Bangkok building. It is located east of the HomePro store on Ploenchit and just west of the CalTex petrol station. Immediately behind it is a large grassy area that might have once sported several buildings. This strange edifice is named in stone* letters "Ploenchit Arcade". It appears from its design to have been part of a much larger structure. Though I have been living in this immediate neighborhood for almost two years this is the first time that I have seen it.**

My guess, with respect to the Red Shirts, is that they will call it quits sometime today ... and, await a general election on November 14th.

* Cement?

** Just goes to show how much I use the SkyTrain vs cars.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010 (Pre-journal)

This writer sent her letter* to the editor of The Nation.

* Farangs enjoy one upping each other with 'funny' letters to the editor.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Right next to the Athenee trio of buildings (hotel, office, condo) there is a U shaped shopping mall named Mahatun. Recently a new restaurant opened here: La Monita, a Mexican restaurant with a lot of Texas flavors. It is right next door to Manhattan, a Big Apple restaurant here in the Big Mango. La Monita got a good review in this week's GURU magazine. I should try it and see if it compares with Carlos & Peppys.

Thursday, May 6, 2010 (Freedom From Prayer Day)

From "The Onion":

Presidential Proclamation-National Day of No Prayer


Throughout our history, whether in times of great joy and thanksgiving, or in times of great challenge and uncertainty, Americans have turned to prayer, and it unfortunately had no effect. In prayer, we have expressed gratitude and humility, sought guidance and forgiveness, and yet never received inspiration and assistance, both in good times and in bad.

On this day, let us cease giving thanks for the many blessings a supposed God has bestowed upon our Nation. Let us, instead, rejoice for the blessing of freedom both to believe and to live our beliefs, and for the many other freedoms and opportunities that bring us together as one Nation. Let us seek wisdom, compassion, and discernment of justice as we address the great challenges of our time.

We are blessed to live in a Nation that counts freedom of conscience and free exercise of religion among its most fundamental principles, thereby ensuring that all people of goodwill may hold and practice their beliefs according to the dictates of their consciences. Prayer has been a silly way for many Americans of diverse faiths to express their most cherished beliefs, and thus we have deemed it fitting and proper to publicly denounce the impotence of prayer on this day across the Nation.

Let us remember in our thoughts those suffering from natural disasters in Haiti, Chile, and elsewhere, and the people from those countries and from around the world who have worked tirelessly and selflessly to render aid rather than ceasing action in the name of prayer. Let us comfort the families of the West Virginia miners, and the people of Poland who so recently and unexpectedly lost many of their beloved leaders. Let us hope for the safety and success of those who have left home to serve in our Armed Forces, putting their lives at risk in order to make the world a safer place. As we remember them, let us not forget their families and the substantial sacrifices that they make every day. Let us remember the unsung heroes who struggle to build their communities, raise their families, and help their neighbors, for they are the wellspring of our greatness. Finally, let us remember in our thoughts those people everywhere who join us in the aspiration for a world that is just, peaceful, free, and respectful of the dignity of every human being.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 6, 2010, as a National Day of No Prayer. I call upon the citizens of our Nation to cease prayer, nor otherwise give thanks to any gods, in accordance with their own faiths and consciences, for it has done nothing to uphold and support our many freedoms and blessings, and I invite all people of faith to join me in refusing to ask for God's continued guidance, grace, and protection, as this has never helped in the past, and to instead work directly to meet the challenges before us.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirtieth day of April, in the year of the Common Era two thousand ten, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.

PS: The Red Shirts are still hanging around. Well, at least their bamboo spears, worn tires, razor wire and drying laundry items are still here; though I don't see too many working bodies behind the barricade.*

* Granted, it was lunch time and all Thais do take their lunch hour seriously.

Friday, May 7, 2010

A pretty Thai girl dressed in white defies the Red Shirts.

Next: Part II

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