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Back by popular demand, I definitely won't be posting as often as I did in past years. If you're really interested in hearing about this amazing place look in the archives for my past travel blogs.

First of all, it's not all about hookers and pingpong ball shows... though I did finally see one of those last year. The sale of sex is plentiful but limited to certain areas. Thais not involved can easily go about their everyday lives and not notice it much. I don't mean to downplay it's existance but it seems people's image of BKK is so focused on prostitution that it overshadows everything else that's amazing about this place. I get more excited about the street food! This city is so chaotically peaceful, it's really hard to describe. I'll be in a very crowded shopping ally full of people, then someone pushes a food cart through, then a taxi that really can't fit squeezes through, and it all moves around like a gently choreographed dance. Yesterday I was in such a crowd and a frumpy but average young woman was barking in Thai about her product. I heard the voice and realized she was a trannie. She was so boringly unspookable until I heard that voice. I really can't get enough of it. I get excited about the dumbest most subtle things. There's a humble elegance to everyday life here. You can go into a chain store and still notice a gracefullness from behind the counter. Listen, I never get all airy fairy like this so you know I mean it.

As a bit of a fattie I have to say that without going the "moneyboy" route I do way better here at meeting guys here than at home. I have been told more than once... don't shit your pants now... that I look like Sylvester Stallone! Hey, I'm sure some Asian bitch who felt like plain Jane at home loves coming to the USA and being compared to Lucy Liu. Diandra (out of drag) used to get called "Eddie Murphy" in Japan.

I am on a working vacation here to have sequin costumes made, mostly in anorexic sizes to use on girls for parties. A client of mine may use me to wardrobe performers for a swanky upcoming event. I got an advance sample of a Pucci print that will be part of the decore. I blew it up and stenciled it behind a pic of a girl in one of the Thai beaded dresses... just as a sketch for the proposal. I think I'll make them whether I get an answer of not, I like the idea. Here's the rough sketch:
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Amazing tiara.

I think I know what you mean about the subtleness even behind the hyperactive street life. Most Thais are Buddhist afterall. And the culture is casually sensitive about so much.

I think here the impact of the Thai sex industry/culture comes off as a dominant factor there because if you go there and are a western male you are pretty much a constant target for all sorts of promoters. I remember once having to leave the place I was staying in a back alley in Bangkok because I was subjected to daily and multiple phone calls from a pimp who had somehow tracked me down after I nixed his offers at the airport upon my arrival. I lost him in Bangkok's Chinatown.

More pics of the wardrobe please.
Bangkok is such an overwhelming city. The sensory input blows New York out of the (polluted river) water.

No matter which district you go to here, you end up in a massive maze that's impossible to master.

I spent a day at Siam Square. It's an area with several humungous shopping malls which are interconnected by raised walkways. Now before you poohpooh talk of malls, you have to understand that malls here are inherantly fancy places. "Common" people shop in hot markets. The mall area takes cues from Vegas, luring you in with visual specatacle. There's lot's of public art, fountains, and high design. It's fun to walk around the super fancy one because it's like going to the Time Warner Center but being able to afford to eat in the fancy places. It's actually bigger and better designed than Time Warner. It's warmer and less intimidating yet just as fancy. Thai culture will always creep into any Western knockoff. Most Malls devote a few floors to market stalls. It's just how most people are used to shopping. Oh, did I mention that one mall now contains one of the most dramatic aquariums that I've ever seen. There's a glass tunnel that runs through a massive fish tank. It's pretty trippy

I spent another day in Chinatown. This was the hot sweaty market experience. There are endless allyways of food stalls and wholesale markets selling everything under the sun plus some. It is such a maze I can't imagine how the locals find their way around. Like the malls, you can walk all day and not see it all. I picked up some Chinese Opera Headpieces to add to my correction... I mean collection.

I'm staying in an area that is basically a wholesale garment district. I'm surrounded by multi story buildings full of market stalls full of wholesale clothing and accessories. Again, it's impossible to walk it all. I was just told by my friend Benjamin that at the one across the street someone was selling bags with a David Lachapelle pic of Amanda Lepore. They do a lot of stuff like that, with no permission of course. I really want to find the stall but this building is HUGE! It might take all day. This year's hot item are fake Lesport bags with the Japanese meets Pucci designs. I almost love them. I just wish they weren't made of that sporty nylon. Vinyl would be so much funkier.

Soon I'll hit the beach and be away from all this hyperactivity. Until then I'll enjoy the ride.

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I LOVE to read your Thai posts....
U must be gagging at the endless fabric experience and I bet you are shopping like Imelda!
Is it 'cheap' there? Average prices?
I love Thai food my ole chum who was there just raves about the food there being so fresh and extreemly cheap. I think I would miss dairy and chocolate though if i was there.
We saw Dreamgils at the Nokia VIP movie theater upatairs in one of the fancy malls. It's 5X the price of a regular movie, which comes to about $14. First you're seated in a glamourous lounge and served a drink. It looks like an expensive Meatpacking district sort of place. Ten minutes later the doors open and you are in what almost looks like a private screening room. It's a very large screen with very few big cushy recliners, which can go all the way back, and come with pillows and blankets. The high walls give you enough privacy to go at it... I sorta think that's the idea.


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Oh, yeah Anna, things are very cheap here. Not as cheap as a few years ago but still pretty darn cheap. Unlike some countries you actually don't save doing any sort of travel package. Once you get here and feel your way around you find it's all cheaper a la carte.

Americans tend to take short trips because they think traveling is expensive. They think it's great that you can stay here in a Marriot type hotel for $40 or a super high end hotel for $100. But that really adds up on a long trip. You can actually stay in an adorable guesthouse for $10-$20.
I'm staying in a commercial district to be near my costume production and I'm paying a little more to be in a place with WIFI. My friends are in the "East Village" sort of area where it's cuter and cheaper.
We have wireless, too. The only problem is you have to leave the room to use it and I always seem to attract the weirdos. Yesterday, this bizarre man in a Mao t-shirt came over and started blabbing about how he's a teacher and translator in China and oh, the students are so innocent, they don't even know what sex is, but of course, they all want to find out...

Imagine all this in a vaguely British/Euro accent, from a guy who says he's from Brooklyn. The grey hair, the self-importance, the volunteered information about why he arrived in Bangkok with a suitcase full of winter clothes, the sex comments about his students, ewwwwwwwww!

By the way, my ass hurts. (That's for Miss U)
I'm reading a lot on the beach. Some years I read legitimate literature. This year is all fun trash. I just finished "La Dolce Musto", I'm almost through "Freak Unique" by Pete Burns, next up is Boy George's recent tell all "Straight". I had to order those last two from Amazon UK. Hattie and Joe if you're listening, you should carry Freak Unique at the store. The cover photo will sell it plus it's a great read.
Thai Drag

There ain't nothin' like it. Even in the small gay disco there's a different show every night, every number is a group number with backup dancers, and there are always Vegasish costumes with lots of glitz and handwork. NewYork drag beats them when it comes to quirkiness and individualism but they blow us away when it comes to wardrobe and production. They're not "dancers" in the Milan/Princess Diandra sense, it's more Busby Berkley.
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I'm coming home tomorrow...sigh. My love affair with this country will not end. There is just something about the way simple things are done here that makes such a deep impression on me. I've traveled a bit and so far the food here is the best in the world. Every cheap little snack on the street is amazing. I do love New York but I also value my time away. One month is just long enough to let go of home and feel like I live somewhere else. It's a great break from routine.

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