(Please excuse any errors. I have no spellcheck here)
How's the weather suckers! I'm here in Bangkok for the 4th time. Perfidia invited my a few years ago and got me hooked. This place has the nicest people, the most amazing food, gorgeous men, and shockingly cheap prices. Also, trannies are very common and, although there is some discrimination, they are far more accepted than in the West. The term "katoey" or "ladyboy" applies to anyone from a very queenie boy to a full blown trannie. It is intersting that transsexuals here do not insist on being classified as women. Maybe it's just because being a transsexual is a valid, somewhat accepted identity, Anyway, you will see katoey, not just trannies, but sissy boys with tweezed eyebrows and long nails, even in very conservative looking shops. That is rare in NY. Yes, we have the ghetto of Pat's, Trash, and MAC, but here they would be in like Polo or a hardware store.
Yesterday I took a really long walk around the weekend market.. I don't have the words to explain how enormous and outrageous this market is. It is impossible to walk the whole thing. It just goes on forever. Clothes, art, food, housewears, china, animals, flowers, toys EVERYTHING. I need to tell you, I am the fussiest person around when it comes to shopping. I walk through a store like Macy's in disgust. I hate everything. I find it all so boring. Even in a "funky" store, I usually only like this and that. But here, I go crazy!
Now, whatever you're imagining, it's that and more. If you're picturing funny Asian misspelled T shirts like in Chinatown, yes they have those. But also, there is some serious fashion going on here. They are more influenced by Japan then us, so there is a lot of wild knock off J-fashion. Then, there are a lot of independant designers making lovely things that are so affordable. I wish I were on a wholesale buying trip! I got the most elegant glass beaded art deco Chinese looking puse. It relly looks like something that would cost hundeds in Bergdorfs, for about $20. You will really gag when you see it!
There is a great balance of beautiful junk and beautiful quality items. Like, some cheap plastic 14th St. quality household item might have such a different style that it's exotic to us. They love pink and green, so I like to stock up on plastic kitchen things. I bought this absurdly large wall clock with a picture of the king and queen of Thailand!
Then, there is great quality stuff. I would get some statues or pottery but there's nowhere in my apt. to put it! I did get some Thai silk to make pants out of. Also, there are booths with cool boutique-type stuff like you'd see in Alphabets or pricy West Village shops. This is where it all comes from folks! It's dazzling. It's hot and sweaty and very crowded, but dazzling.
I know this post is all about shopping, but hey, I never shop at home. On monday I'm off to the dressmaker who makes me those lovely hand sequined things. This year I'm going for a ripped up and sequined glam punk dolman sort of look. They make stuff exclusively for showgirls and drag shows!
Like in many places, the gay and the bohemien worlds seem a bit seperate. I ran across booths in the weekend market selling rock-n-roll regalia, punk t-shirts, etc. There were tatooed guys, one even had a mohawk and his face covered with tattoos. I don't see any real freaks in the gay bars. But hey, if you visit NY and go to the wrong bars you might miss out also. Maybe I'm just not clued in.
The gay bars though are fun and non threatening. The awful gym body culture peeks in here and there, but it's not so prevalent. The queens who do shows here always put a lot of effort into their drag. Even if they're trannies, they still go for heavy makeup and showgirl looks. What's cute is that they actully do boy lip syncs! Last night this guy did "I Want to be Your Underwear" while dancing with 4 trannies.
More later. I need to stop shopping and do something cultural and museumish.
[This message was edited by Miss Understood on 02-05-02 at 11:56 PM.]