January 28, 2005
DAY 464: "We're in Bangkok. We can't not see one," Oklahoman Ellen said to her husband Kevin the night before at dinner. She was of course referring to the famous sex shows of the red-lighted Patpong district, another one of Bangkok's signature attractions even if you're not a total perv. That night we went to go see one and discovered it was a rather interesting and enjoyable show that involved a lot extraction of items from a particular female body part.
DAYTIME BROUGHT A SHOW OF A LESS X-RATED NATURE when Noelle and I finally got around to going to the movie theater, not only to see a film, but to be pampered in the Gold Class VIP seating available at Grand EGV Cinemas in Siam Square. Really, heated reclining massage chairs with complimentary socks, blanket, pillow, and snacks are the only way to go when seeing a three-hour screening of Martin Scorsese's The Aviator. It was a movie I thoroughly enjoyed, and I'm not just saying that because of Leo's top notch performance or the luxury theater conditions; bombshell supergirl Gwen Stefani was in it too.
THE SKY WENT DARK and the "red lights" came on. Noelle, Kevin, Ellen, and I made our way from dinner at Anna's Cafe (named after the governess of King Rama IV's children) to the Patpong district (picture above), where the glow of neon lights in many colors (not just red) illuminated the crowded streets and pedestrian malls. With the night market, there were a lot more people simply shopping for souvenirs than sex than I thought, but that's not to say sex was readily available -- for a fee of course; "No Money, No Honey," is a common phrase heard and silk-screened onto t-shirts. There were plenty of touts around with laminated "menu" cards of the different things they could lead you to:
Pussy Ping Pong
Pussy Shooting Darts
and much, much more!
Lonely Planet warned that most of these pussy card-toting touts often led to shows where they scam you for thousands of baht, even though they tell you there's no charge. You don't need Lonely Planet to figure that one out; no money, no honey, after all. The guidebook did recommend one place where there were no gimmicks (at least not ones involving money), Supergirls, a go-go bar and X-rated cabaret like the others, only with an up-front stated policy that the cover charge was the simple one drink minimum (90 baht/drink).
"That's it? Just the one drink?" Ellen asked the woman outside to confirm. She was really eager to see the on-goings inside.
Up the stairs we went, passed the numerous "NO PHOTO" signs posted everywhere, and the four of us were seated in the couples section on the other side of the stage where the single old men were sitting, amidst the Thai woman offering services for them. To our surprise, two of the white-haired old men were actually old white-haired grandma-type women. I supposed everyone is curious as to what goes on in these types of places.
Four drinks came to our table as we sat and watched the show on stage. My initial impressions weren't too grand. "This is a pretty generic strip club," I told Noelle. On stage, five girls were dancing topless on the stripper poles, but with not much fervor at all -- except for this one Thai girl who perhaps had a bit too much Red Bull and was most likely inspired by the movie Flashdance. "C'mon, I wanna see something cool!" I complained.
I ate those words right away when the next act of the night came on.
"Oh, okay. That's cool."
Lowered from the ceiling was a huge martini glass filled with water, bubbles, and a girl in a florescent orange bikini. There wasn't much to her dancing though; she simply lounged and moved in the big martini glass trying to be all sexy, which didn't really work because she was picking her wedgies all the time.
Meanwhile, at our table, two strippers approached us at opposite ends -- one to Ellen and one to me -- and both of them simply started massaging the two of us. Needless to say, I didn't turn her away -- nor did Ellen for that matter. Noelle and Kevin continued to watch the show on stage as the crazy Flashdance girl was pulling a string of flowers out of her vagina with one of her co-strippers.
"[My stripper] wants me to buy her a drink," Ellen told me.
"Yeah, mine too," I said. "I think you just order a drink for them, and they just get the ninety baht."
"This is good," Ellen said, enjoying the kneading of her muscles by a scantily-clad Thai woman. "I think I might actually get her one."
"Yeah, me too."
"One hundred baht, same same. You give to me," my massaging stripper said.
"Okay." I paid for services well-rendered as did Ellen on the other side of the table. Ellen's stripper went away while mine lingered and started massaging me again, below the belt the time. She was obviously trying to milk me for more money and with a pretty damn good strategy too.
"Uh, no, that's okay," told her politely. "No more." She respectfully walked away to go back dancing on stage where some girls were now pulling scarves out of their privates like they were boxes of Kleenex. It's a good thing too; if things were progressing the way they were, I'd probably have put her through college and be bankrupt.
That stunt was only topped by the blowing of whistles and horns.
Amazing, I thought. Simply amazing. These are truly super girls.
While Bangkok's sex tourism industry isn't smiled upon by everyone, it is here to stay. Patpong will continue to thrive and entertain for every man, woman, and grandma curious enough to see just how multi-talented a vagina can really be.
DETAILS AND TRAILER COMING SOON...
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