Friday, 29 June 2012

Real Friends Do Not Encourage You To Jeopardise Your Health

Why is it that when someone overweight says, "I am going on a diet", or "I need to lose some weight", there are always sycophants who say things like, "Oh babe*, you look lovely... you have a beautiful figure - you don't need to lose anything"... even when the person is blatantly overweight or even obese (28lbs + is considered obese)?

Are people:
1. Thick - can't/won't think, so offer up a completely glib remark
2. Lying - afraid of hurting the feelings of others
3. Lying - secretly glad their friend is overweight because they think it makes them look good
4. Lying - an overweight friend justifies their own weight issues, and makes them feel better about themselves
5. All of the above
6. Telling the truth - they genuinely believe that being overweight looks nice

Surely a *real* friend would be supportive? They wouldn't tell someone they look lovely when clearly the person doesn't feel that way?

I don't mean someone wanting to lose 'a few pounds' (although even then, if someone feels they need to lose 7lbs, for example, they should still be supported), I'm talking about people who are obviously overweight. It's really galling to hear some of my friends being told they 'look fine', when what they are asking for is support (because they need it). It is unhealthy to be overweight, why would anyone encourage someone they allegedly care for to be unhealthy?

If someone doesn't feel right, and feels they don't look right, surely their feelings should be respected, and not be met with throwaway comments because 'friends' cannot or will not be honest with each other? Surely a real friend would be concerned for a friend's health and wellbeing, and would tell them the truth?

Real friends don't encourage indulgent beer and cake consumption!

*Could there be a worse expression?

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Spicy Food....Why?

It's not that I don't like spicy food - I do... as long as it's not too spicy - I just don't understand what the point is of having it so hot that it hurts to eat it.

Image credit unknown


Some of the farang men here – yikes! There used to be a saying; FILTH (Failed In London, Try Hongkong)... sad  to say that this seems to be alive and well here in Chiang Mai (and, I suspect, other parts of Thailand too). The attitude of some of the western males here is frankly, archaic in my opinion. 

I am utterly shocked an appalled by the attitude of some of them. It’s bad enough that they refer to their employees as servants, when in fact what these people do is maintain the garden and clean the house, but I find the attitude toward the Thai women actually to be repugnant. 

Freely admitting that they came out here to have multiple girlfriends or sex-partners, they then complain that the Thai women they are with refuse to ‘be a source of pleasure’ for them (their words, not mine) if they are not faithful to them. Do they really think that Thai women are so desperate for a western man that they should be grateful for any crumb thrown to them? That they should be meek, humble little women, serving the man’s every whim, no matter how unreasonable it may be? Or do they genuinely believe they are such a great catch because they have an amount of money and these women don’t, that the women will just accept their unreasonable behaviour in order to feed their families? 

What is this, the dark ages?

And then you have the ones who complain about the bar girls; firstly that they exist, and secondly that some are over 30 (and I’ve heard both of these from the same person). So it’s not OK to be a bar girl, and it’s especially not OK that some are not as young and pretty as certain men would like them to be. It’s as though there is something wrong with a woman who is not  a teenager or in her twenties. I honestly don’t understand why a guy in his sixties would want a 19 year old – either to have sex with or to marry. What do they have in common? Yet you see this all the time here... and usually, the man is walking ahead of the girl. 

What I especially don’t understand is men in their sixties (for example) who are with girls who look like children. Thai women often look far younger than they actually are, and I have on several occasions discovered that someone I took to be around 13 or 14 was in fact in her early twenties. Maybe it’s me but I find something very sordid about a retired man who wants a woman/girl who looks like a child.

Maybe some of these relationships work – I’d hope that not all of the men are horrible individuals, and I’d hope that not all of the girls are on the make (although I’m sure some of them are, and frankly, good luck to them!) but the more I see of this, the more I have to wonder at the mentality of the men who go down this path (sometimes over and over again – I recently heard of a man in his seventies who has just got divorced from his seventh Thai wife). On the odd occasion I have been unfortunate enough to be in the same restaurant as some of these people, overhearing their conversations (all their wives’ fault of course), it seems that most have had failed relationships/marriages in their home countries, yet expect the Thai women to drop at their feet and worship them... without ever addressing any issues which are likely to have contributed to the other break ups (e.g. too much booze, chauvinism, generally being an arse, etc.).

I recently heard one complain that his wife has refused to sleep with him until he mends his philandering ways; he actually said she was being completely unreasonable, and that as a man it was his right to have as many women as he wanted... and that his wife should be grateful he married her! And yet another was soliciting advice from his peers as to the best way to do a bunk on his wife... the consensus was that he wait until she is asleep, sneak out, and head for the nearest border. Unbelievable. Fortunately, our encounters with these kind of people are few and far between; they don’t really come up to where we live and socialise, well not much, and we keep away from those kind of farang haunts in the city.

In addition to seemingly treating their wives and girlfriends like pieces of meat, it’s the complete disregard for feelings of others; it’s how they abuse their host country; it’s the rude jokes they make about the Thais when they think they cannot understand what is being said about them. It’s the constant trying to get one over on the Thais, and it’s how they are all ‘experts’ regarding the finer intricacies of the Thai government. But mostly, it’s that even though they complain endlessly about how horrible it is here (it’s not – it’s lovely and the people are lovely), they are still here. In a way, I actually feel very sad for these people because I don’t believe that anywhere, anyone, or anything could ever make them happy or be satisfied with their lives. Much less be thankful. It must be a very sorry state of affairs to be so utterly without grace and dignity.

Monday, 4 June 2012

The tooth, the whole tooth, and nothing but the tooth!

Grace Dental Clinic - My Chiang Mai Dentist

As a child, my deciduous teeth were very attached to me, so much so that my dentist (Dr. B) had to remove them as and when the new ones started to come through. When I was 15, I somehow developed an abscess (I've always been very particular about my oral hygiene, so I can only put it down to the fact that my mother had a habit of repeatedly hitting me in the face, and all that trauma created a weak spot), and so I took myself off to see the dentist.  Dr. B was on holiday, and instead, I was seen by his locum, who as it turned out, was quite the worst dentist I've ever had dealings with.

Saturday, 2 June 2012