Opinion

Bua Ban: Chiang Rai’s rising star

Bua Ban: Chiang Rai’s rising star

People who have recently visited the foodcourt in Chiang Rai’s Night Bazaar might have noticed a change in the entertainment program. Since August 2012 a relatively new artist called Bua Ban, which translates as Blossoming Lotus, is stealing the show. Bua Ban (Real name: Witchapon Wongtong), aged 22, has a mixed program of stand-up comedy and [...]

Surviving in Thailand: The hard truth

Surviving in Thailand: The hard truth

Many visitors to Thailand love the easygoing local atmosphere and notice that they get much more pleasure and value for money than at home. For me it took five years of dreaming to take bold decision to move over here. I remember back home I frequently visited the website escapeartist.com to check if I would be able to [...]

Thailand’s kuddle industry

Thailand’s kuddle industry

Welcome to the pagan Walhalla,  welcome to Thailand! Men are enjoying their days on the beach, drinking beer and having sex with any local they can get their hands on, whenever they feel like. Eventhough the stereotype of sextourism and sexpats in connection to the beautiful country persists, it is far from a catch-all phrase for [...]

Social network psychology for dummies

Social network psychology for dummies

Keytar Platypus by tenso GRAPHICS Probably you will all know the feeling: You agree to become Facebook or Google+ friends with someone you just met. Once befriended, you curiously check out the person’s profile, timeline or hangout and albums. Besides available profile data, social network data patterns can give away invaluable hidden psychological traits about that [...]

Thai PM Yingluck surpasses Aung San Suu Kyi in FB popularity

Thai PM Yingluck surpasses Aung San Suu Kyi in FB popularity

Aung San Suu Kyi (L) meets Thailand’s Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra at the Thai ambassador’s residence in Rangoon on 20 December 2011. (Reuters) Yingluck Shinawatra, Prime-minister of Thailand,  is now 10 months in power and is very popular, especially amongst Thai women. Although 44 year old* Yingluck doesn’t seem to be as wise and determined as [...]

Photo: Miss Avan from the Khmer owned Temple Club, a popular bar and restaurant in pub street. The text on her shirt; "Khmer and Proud of it", underlines there's a new vibe of awareness.

Siem Reap is getting upmarket

Photo: Miss Avan, waitress in the popular Khmer owned Temple Club bar and restaurant. Slowly but steadily Cambodia is recovering from apocalyptic times. Besides NGO workers, in the late 80′s and early 90′s it was a place for adventurers, followed by backpackers in the last decade.  One of the musts for Cambodia goers is to visit the famous temples [...]

Chiang Rai’s Dutch village street view

Chiang Rai’s Dutch village street view

During my stay in Chiang Rai I was surprised to find out Dutch expats seemed to outnumber those from any other local farang community. About 40 senior Dutch people enjoy a basic state pension from the Netherlands and are registered at the local Social Security Office. Many more are younger though and are making a [...]

CAG, Computer Aided Governance: Will future governments be replaced by a computer?

CAG, Computer Aided Governance: Will future governments be replaced by a computer?

I have been mentioning this last week in a comment on Lani’s ever-inspiring blog.As far as I know the idea was first put forward by Martin Amstrong in 2011. Amstrong explicitely refers to expert systems, but fails to address how such a system will be implemented.One of the oldest examples of an expert system is [...]

To obey or not to obey, that’s the question

To obey or not to obey, that’s the question

Today I read a moving story titled ‘In North Korea, a brutal coice‘. It is about a woman called Han who escaped from the country with her two daughters to China and was finally permitted to live in the US. Along the way she faced the cruel choice of leaving her 5 years old son [...]

Katoey in historical and social perspective

Katoey in historical and social perspective

All katoey band, Venus Flytrap Tolerant and protective about human rights as people try to be, in a growing part of the world post- and/or pre-operative transgender people are now allowed to change their official identity from M to F or vice versa. The Thai concept of katoey however is hardly understood in the West. Commonly [...]