Where were you when the realization finally hit you? The realization that sex with bargirls / hookers is, for the most part, a waste of time and money. I was sitting in the restaurant of the Nana Hotel, at a table next to the window, looking out into the parking lot. I should have been champing at the bit to get amongst them, I’d just come back from a two month contract on a vessel in the Gulf of Mexico but, looking at the activity outside, it had about as much excitement for me as a pile of freshly mown grass.
It had that same old worn out feel to it. The same old contrived artificially sweet lines and smiles. ‘Hello sexy man – where you come from’, and so on and so forth. Girls going about their business, doing their job, rounding up another punter for a quick session of going through the motions sex, a quick shower and that will be 1000 baht – khop koon ka and see you next time.
It was only 7.00 pm and I still had the whole night ahead of me. There were a number of places I was going to have a look at. Even though I’d lived in the LOS for the better part of thirteen years, I wasn’t readily familiar with the bar scene in Bangkok. Somehow, I didn’t think it would be all that much different to Pattaya, or any other part of the country for that matter. The same small girls from Isaan, doing the same little routines, for the same, or similar, amounts of money, for a never ending line of sex starved punters.
I paid my bill and walked out into the parking lot. It’s all about the eye contact and the smile. It’s a bit like an on / off switch. A smile is an invitation of interest and the rehearsed routine begins. No smile, and there’s no interest, and no need for the rehearsed routine because time is money and, as we all know, if there’s no money, there’s no honey.
As I walked towards Soi 4, a couple of Isaan’s finest approached. Teetering on their high heels, their four foot thirteen elevated stature was still below chin level. I often wondered why six foot something farangs walked around with these little things in tow. To me, it always looked like a guy taking a pet out for a walk. On cue they started their routine; ‘hello, where you come from’. A simple line but part of the calculated system of bargirl / hooker speak, where one question leads into another. I was looking but not listening because I was thinking that it would be much easier for them if they just had a pre-recorded message on an MP3 player and used small speakers as earrings. That way, as a punter approaches, simply hit the play button and smile.
‘Hello sexy man’ – Every man with a full wallet is sexy.
‘Where you come from’ – Determines the strength of your currency. Sterling, Euros and US Dollars being preferred and generally are associated with the comment: ‘You have big money’.
‘How long you stay here for’ – How long a punter can be milked for.
‘You come Thailand first time’ – Assessing how gullible you might be.
‘What hotel you stay’ – The standard of hotel is an indication of your spending power and is very closely linked, once again, to ‘hello sexy man’.
I started to laugh and moved on. Across the road I saw the insect chuck wagon. I wanted to take a couple of photos because some of my work mates didn’t quite believe that grasshoppers, scorpions and small frogs were readily available for consumption. I got a couple of good shots and then moved off towards the intersection of Soi 4 and Sukhumvit Road. This small section of Soi 4 is an experience in human interaction – hawkers’ carts, farangs, freelancers, katoeys, motorbike taxis and dogs all inter-mingling. Some call it interesting; I call it an obstacle course.
It was early in the evening and my destination was the Eden Bar. Having heard, and read, so much about this place, I was looking forward to checking it out. For most guys, who’ve lived in the LOS for a few years, a threesome is not that big of a deal. Most of us have had a session, with two and three girls, on the odd occasion. There are a couple of places in Pattaya where the girls will do this as part of their routine, so it wasn’t really anything out of the ordinary for me.
The first thing I noticed about the Eden Bar, upon entering, was that it’s a fairly small establishment. There were a number of girls there lounging around disinterestedly. I ordered a Heineken and sat down at the bar. I was asked if I’d been there before. I said no and was handed a menu and, it wasn’t for ordering food. A lady, probably the mamasan, sat down in front of me and pointed out the yellow line. ‘Every lady to the left, of the yellow line, did anal and every lady to the right didn’t do anal’. I noticed that there weren’t too many on the right side of the line. Obviously there was more money in anal. I looked at the selection that was available. No doubt they probably knew their stuff but, from a fairly sober point of view, they were probably the nastiest looking selection of whores I’d seen in Thailand. I finished my beer and walked out, deciding that I’d come back when I’d had a few more.
I decided to head down the road and around the corner to Soi 7, my next destination being the Biergarten. I walked in and the place was packed. I found a seat at the bar facing one of the TVs. The rugby was on so I’d got there just in time. A quick glance around revealed lots of ladies of the older genre – mutton done up as lamb. There were probably six girls out of the whole lot that were hot. Every guy has got his own opinion on what is hot and what’s not but for me, it’s usually a decent body – slim with curves and tits – a pretty face and twenty one to twenty five years old. I spotted one, made eye contact and smiled. The switch went on, she smiled and I pointed at my glass motioning I’d buy her a drink. She came over to where I was sitting and introduced herself. The English was reasonably good. She sat down and began the routine – ‘Where you come from’. I started laughing, I couldn’t help it. She looked at me with a puzzled expression and I told her that I wasn’t a tourist and I didn’t want to listen to that crap. I then told her that if she behaved herself I would probably take her to have ‘ahaan talay’ across the road because I didn’t feel like eating alone.
There’s no doubt that Thai bargirls are amazingly friendly when they need to be but the reality is that a lot of it is still part of the routine. It’s the business of sex, pleasure for a fee, the on / off switch at work. Keep handing money over and you’ll get all the attention you seek. Stop the flow and the switch goes off quickly – no money, no honey. We finished our drinks and went across to the outdoor seafood restaurants. I was actually thinking about taking this one back to the hotel for a bit of horizontal folk dancing. Then something happened which just reinforced my opinion that bargirls / hookers are completely unreliable but, at the same time, totally predictable. We’d finished eating and she spotted some guy who’d just sat down at a table near to us. He waves and she goes over for a lengthy chat. Upon returning, I’m told that it’s an old boyfriend and that he wants to buy her a drink. I just started laughing – how many times have I seen this shit before, a bargirl / hooker changing to what she might consider a better windfall – I looked at her, smiled and then said ‘up to you’. I knew what was coming next. Just in case things didn’t work out, she wanted to hedge her bets – ‘would you be going back to the Biergarten and could you please pay my small bin I left there’. A lot of these girls are so used to having mug punters do just about anything they ask of them that she probably got quite a surprise when I waved her off disinterestedly and carried on drinking my Heineken.
My next destination was going to be Gulliver’s on Soi 5. I took the shortcut through the tunnel between soi 7 and soi 5, the strong smell of Isaan food lingering in the enclosed environment. There were a few girls sitting at small tables along the way, tucking into what smelt like a mixture of something dead, and rotting matter. I was asking myself – ‘what is it that we find attractive about these girls’. To be honest, I really don’t know but, one thing I do know is, it’s not their eating habits.
Gulliver’s bar, on Soi 5, is actually a pretty good watering hole for those that like plenty of televised sports action. On the rear wall, there’s a long bank of TVs situated above the bar. Six, or so, with live football, football replays, and wrestling being the predominant viewing. The entire rear left side of the bar is dedicated to the pool playing enthusiasts. The ladies have their areas staked out. The older ones set themselves up in the front bar area and most of them are the thirty plus genre – once again, mutton done up as lamb. The younger ones occupy the rear bar area where the pool tables are. Venture down there and you’ll be asked if you want a game and, unless you’re a hustler from way back, you’ll get your ass whipped by these ladies. Most of them spend a number of hours a day playing pool so, for the most part, they know their shit when it comes to knocking those balls into the pockets.
It was about 10 pm when I walked in, so the place was packed. No seats in the front bar area, so I went down to where the TVs were, found a table and ordered a Heineken. Once again, I didn’t see much to really get enthusiastic about. I often wonder what it is about these girls that makes completely sane, intelligent men lose the plot over. It’s certainly not their bodies. If you can get one before she’s had a baby, then you might end up with one with a half decent figure. Most of them though, once they’ve had a child, have small and shapeless bodies – they just don’t have the curves that a decent looking farang bird has. I finished my beer and decided that, unless I found one that looked like Miss Thailand, I was going to just have a good night out on the grog. My next destination was going to be Rainbow 4 in Nana Plaza. Once again I had to negotiate the obstacle course at the beginning of Soi 4. It was 11 pm and the whole area was heaving. Getting across Sukhumvit, to enter Soi 4, is an interesting exercise as well. Most metered taxi drivers don’t seem to understand the real meaning of a red light, at an intersection. To them, a red light seems to be a signal to continue on for at least another five seconds. White lines painted on the road have absolutely no meaning at all to most Thais. For a Thai to stop his vehicle, at a pedestrian crossing, you would need to be lying down on it and, even then, I wouldn’t like to bet on whether or not they would stop.
Have you ever eaten fish and chips in a park? You know, you’re sitting there, on a park bench, tucking into your steaming hot bundle of fish and chips and, slowly but surely, you notice the gulls start to gather and inch their way in towards you. You take a hot chip and throw it into the mass. There’s an instant squawking, raucous eruption of noise and wings which settles down as soon as the victor gulps down the hot chip. It’s a bit like that when you enter Nana Plaza. The girls in the bars, at ground level, all erupt into a squawking gaggle, trying to get your attention and, as soon as you pass, it quickly dies down.
I took the elevator up to the second level and made my way down the long balcony that runs its’ entire length. Rainbow 4 is on the right at the far end. I parted the curtains at the entrance and moved inside. The place was packed and it looked like I’d be hard pressed finding a seat. Then a hostess came over and showed me to a stool, a couple of meters from the doorway and facing the dance platforms. Rainbow 4 is supposedly one of the best gogo bars in town. I looked at the two elevated platforms with chrome poles. There were about forty girls, in total, shuffling about and looking decidedly bored. Most of the punters, on the stools around the dance platforms, were virtually drooling. I wondered how many of these were newbies to the LOS.
This was one of the high profile gogo bars and, as you’d expect, most of the girls had reasonably good figures. Some, I had to concede, were hot. This is to be expected though because gogo bar girls attract the highest fees and, as such, they’re essentially displaying their assets. It’s muff on the hoof, a bit like a cattle sale where the best meat is on display and on offer to the highest bidder. The thing is though that these girls, for the most part, are bloody lame. They get used to mug punters throwing stupid amounts of money at them and they develop attitude. Which is why they end up looking so bored with what they’re doing (they know they don’t have to do a lot to earn their keep). In fact, most of them displayed a level of interest, in what they’re doing, which would equate to what you’d expect from a couple of old women having a discussion about the weather, while shelling a bucket of peas. One way to liven them up, of course, would be to launch a bucket of ping pong balls into the middle of the dance platform.
My thoughts were interrupted by someone shaking my arm and saying “hello, you buy me drink”. It wasn’t so much a question but a demand. I looked at her and said “and your name is”. It didn’t really matter what her name was, she was just another poor, uneducated girl, from Isaan, trying to hustle up a living. A lady drink, realistically, isn’t expensive. I asked her what she wanted and immediately she yelled out to a waiter and ordered tequila. She was twenty two years old, a hardcore drinker already, with tattoos on her shoulder and lower back.
You could make a mould to produce a production line of gogo bar girls, or most bar girls for that matter. It generally goes something like this: daughter of a poor rice farming family from Isaan; minimum level of high school education – usually only three years; finished school at fifteen years of age and worked on the rice farm for a while before taking a low paid, minimum wage job in a factory in Bangkok; by sixteen or seventeen, meets and becomes pregnant to a young Thai male; after giving birth, the young Thai male is nowhere to be found; returns to the village and leaves the baby with her parents, before heading off to Bangkok, or Pattaya, to work in a bar. What they do to earn a living is their business. The point is though, and this is where many guys lose their way with these girls, what they do is a job, they’re earning a living and, as such, they’ve got more tricks up their sleeve than a Las Vegas card shark for extracting money out of gullible foreigners. It may be that some off them are genuinely straight but the odds of that are low. It’s the beauty, the smile and the false sweetness that sucks most guys in but, the reality is, what have they really got to offer that’s going to improve your position on this planet – nothing really, that’s the cold reality. A relationship with one of these girls only means one thing: an economic flow which is unrelentingly one way – from you to them and it will rarely change.
I ordered another Heineken and nodded my head to the mind numbing thump of the music. My tattooed friend had departed shortly after realizing that I wasn’t good for another lady drink. By midnight I’d had enough of the crap music. I paid my bin and made my way out of Nana Plaza. The seagulls were less enthusiastic. The whole area was heaving and there seemed to be more chuck wagons, than earlier, blocking the entry / exit point to Nana Plaza. The car park entrance to Nana Hotel was thick with freelancers and katoeys. I pushed my way through and headed towards the hotel entrance, my intended destination being Angels Disco. The last time I visited Angels was about three years earlier and, as far as I could make out, the only thing about the place that had changed was the price; it was now four hundred baht to get through the door.
I ordered a Heineken and found a table near the entrance. Looking around I could see plenty of punters on the dance floor with their “girl friends”. Good luck to them I suppose. Unless they’re a multi millionaire, there’s no chance that a forty to fifty year old farang will ever get to shag a twenty year old back where they come from. In Thailand we suddenly become sexy men again. The problem is, of course, that more than a few actually believe it. What they think is the love of their lives is actually just a hooker going about her business. The business of earning a living; of doing whatever it takes to survive; to provide for the family and baby back in Isaan and, as is usually the case, to provide money for the deadbeat Thai boyfriend who’s usually not too far away.
Eighty percent of Thai bargirls have a Thai boyfriend or husband. The money that’s given to the girl of your dreams usually ends up paying for the deadbeat’s whiskey, gambling and snooker sessions.
I looked to my left and noticed a taller, well dressed girl walk through the entrance. She was alone and seemed to have an air of aloofness about her. I smiled and thought great, that’s just what the world needs; another Thai whore with attitude. It’s quite amusing actually, the attitude thing that they seem to develop for farangs. To their own people they amount to very little, they’re the bottom rung of the societal ladder. Educated Thai males, with money, wouldn’t go near them. Essentially, they end up with a Thai boyfriend / husband who’s either a motorbike taxi driver; a pimp or someone who works in the gay industry.
My thoughts were interrupted by a hand on my shoulder. I looked around and saw that it was the whore with attitude. The smile seemed friendly and the English was reasonably good. She asked if she could join me. I pointed to the vacant seat on my left and she sat down. I was in a frame of mind that I couldn’t give a rat’s arse if I did, or didn’t, take one of these ladies back to the hotel with me for the night because, at the end of the day, it’s always a bloody lottery if you get one that’s worth the money you give it. The reality is that most Thai bargirls are dud shags. Every now and again you get one that puts up a decent level of performance but that’s more often than not the exception to the norm. From what I could see, from a brief period of observation, the one now sitting next to me would be a dud as well.
“Where do you come from” (Thai bar girl)
“I came from Singapore today” (me)
“So did I” (Thai bar girl)
“How’s business at Orchard Towers” (me)
“How do you know that” (Thai bar girl)
“Look, if you want some stupid tourist that doesn’t know anything, then go right ahead, there’s plenty out there” (me)
“So you know too much, huh” (Thai bar girl)
“I know that the only reason you’re sitting here now is because you are doing your job and not because you’re interested in who I am” (me)
The look on her face was the one that Thai bargirls get when they realize they’re being outmaneuvered and their standard line of BS doesn’t work. It’s a cross between confusion and a sulk.
To avoid the loss of face situation I said “what do you want to drink”.
“Corona thank you”, she replied.
At the end of the day they’re just trying to earn a living. If some gullible farang comes along and throws a bucketful of money at them, who’s to blame, the farang for being bloody naïve, or the bar girl, for just using the only skills and assets she’s got available to her, for making her way in the world.
“You don’t look as though you’ve been doing this work for so long”, I said.
“About six months”, she replied.
“How many children do you have”, I asked.
“One, a boy” (TBG)
“Thai or Loo Krung” (me)
“Loo Krung, papa from America” (TBG)
“What happened to him” (me)
“We separate about six months ago” (TBG)
“Oh, what happened” (me)
“He fuck my friend in Singapore” (TBG)
“How you know that” (me)
“She show me photo” (TBG)
“So, how many farang boyfriend you have now” (me)
I could understand that, she was an attractive lady.
“How much money they send you for one month” (me)
“One month, altogether eighty thousand” she replied proudly.
I could never understand why guys beat themselves up mentally, wondering if their bar girlfriend was being faithful to them, while they were back in their home country. Even worse, paying somebody money to trail the girl of their dreams for any indication of being unfaithful. A waste of money and time. Take it as a given that, while you’re not there, she’s being humped by other paying customers and that she’s got more than one punter sending her money every month.
Bar girls are timeshare arrangements. You never lose the girl; you just lose your turn.
I looked at my watch, it was 1.30 am. I’d had enough to drink, although I wasn’t yet plastered, and decided that a couple of hours of exercise, with my new found friend, would be an ideal way to sweat out the alcohol. I turned and asked her “what’s your price”. She replied that she was “expensive”. I said “cattle cost more”. It was a joke that went over her head. I said I’d give her 2000 baht for a couple of hours. She looked at me and said “why you don’t want me for all night”. I said “I don’t pay for TV watching, mobile phone talking and sleeping time”.
We went back to the hotel and, needless to say, my original assumption, about her performance level, was proven correct; she was a bloody lousy shag.
My point is that the majority of Thai bargirls are lousy shags. Most of them aren’t even interested in what they’re doing; it’s just a means to an end – money. When you throw in the Thai apathetic approach, to the way they carry out their professed job function, which is only a reflection of their general approach to most things in life – minimal effort for maximum gain, then it’s understandable why they’re generally such lazy, disinterested, non performers. Be honest and really ask yourself, of all the Thai bargirls / hookers you might have shagged, how many were actually worth the money they were paid; how many were actually any good at what they do. I figure about ten percent. So, when this is taken into consideration, you’ve got to wonder what they’re actually being paid for. Well, I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s to get rid of them… Essentially, they’re being paid to leave.