A list of ten manly things every bloke should do in Bangkok — because sometimes men just need to let off some steam or relax in a gentlemanly fashion here in the City of Sandals.
And, let’s face it, there’s nothing less laddish than traipsing around another bloody farmers’ market, visiting a soi dog rescue center, or running amok armed only with a salad fork in the cat café.
Straight from the manosphere, here’s the top ten:
1) Visit a Thai Barbers
With every farang trying to out-beard and out-man-bun each other nowadays, why not stand out from the crowd?
Be perverse, be bad, and shave the whole bloody mariner’s debacle off.
How to find the classic Thai barber shop? Look out for the red and white rotating barbers’ pole and enter into this manly domain of blades and hair. The chair rocks back horizontal as the barber reaches for the cut-throat razor and begins his not so delicate slicing. The chair springs back up and you may even get a karate chop back massage thrown in gratis before being spat back out into the streets as a newly groomed male.
2) Ride a Tuk-Tuk
“Cheap suit mister?
Want buy gem?
I give you good price mister, where you go?
Sexy lady mister?
Ping Pong Show?
What you like?
Where you go?”
You walk up to the driver slowly: “Tell you what, Somchai, I’ll give you a hundred baht to let me drive that bad boy for twenty minutes.”
He’ll agree because he’s smiling, and he knows if you put a scratch on that mean machine you’ll be paying out big time.
And we’re off – that two-stroke engine screaming, weaving, and watch out city.
Bangkok traffic? Bah. What could possibly go wrong as your three-wheeler negotiates the roundabout and that once precious center of gravity suddenly slips away….
3) Visit a Go-Go Bar
Inside it smells like those public toilets your mother never used to let you go inside, you know, the ones next to Tesco, with the graffiti on the backs of the doors, where the old man wearing three overcoats smiles downwards with a nasty, ratty, beard.
The drinks cost a fortune and you feel like that dirty old man as the dancers do the slow awkward Isaan shuffle, left to right, right to left.
Number 69 walks over and sits down next to you, and my lord, you feel like a real dude now – Ohhh, she even touches you…
4) Get in an argument on Thaivisa.com
No Bangkok warrior has earned his wings before entering a full-on debate on the popular expat forum ThaiVisa.
Start a discussion about home-improvement and end up with some far flung village farang threatening to bludgeon you to death with a garden hoe.
Be strong cyber warrior, be strong.
Moreover, be mean, be cruel, tap tap tap, and remember, ‘don’t slam the door on your way out.’
5) Join a Muay Thai Gym
Sick and tired of your friends calling you a two can Van Damme? Show them who’s boss with a crash course in Thailand’s national sport.
Be sure to read the small print first though – hospital bills usually not included.
6) Drink a Bottle of Centipede Whiskey
Ya Dong is for amateurs.
If you want to get to the real source of alcoholic manliness in this Kingdom, it can’t be simply found in a bottle of Hong Tong. No, mister, I’m talking about dead-creature-in-bottle-drunkenness.
Your creature may differ – snakes, scorpions, centipedes or rodents are all acceptable. Quite how the process works you haven’t the foggiest, but let’s assume that the species inside these bottles have been brewing in some science lab prior to being stuffed in a whiskey bottle, or they could have been caught wild and sent straight to source? But really, who cares?
Drink it and feel the hairs sprout from your manly chest just before the contents of your stomach projectile rainbow-fashion over the balcony rail to which you perilously cling.
7) Ride a Mechanical Bull
Step aboard and hold on tight, and don’t look the wrong way at the dude with the joystick because he owns you until you fall off that mechanical beast, and fall off you will, at one time or another.
Listen, Sonny Jim: the bull game is rigged.
8) Build a House in Isaan
What could be manlier than selling up your three-bed semi in Chatham for a song and investing in a plot of land you will never own in Northeast Thailand?
Pouring over plans, sitting watching the team build the home, and when you move in, the rest of the extended family does too.
Soon you find yourself wishing the balcony was higher.
9) Receive an Isaan Kiss
This one is for those not blessed with a ‘sweet mouth’.
Say the wrong thing in the wrong company and you may well end up with an empty Chang bottle over the back of the noodle.
Should such a disgruntled Thai take it upon themselves to correct your inebriated self in this fashion, congratulations: you have been kissed Isaan style.
10) Pay for Jet Ski Repairs
Bare-chested, Bermuda-shorted crashing over the waves – what could be a more noble manly pursuit than that of jet-skiing off the coast of Pattaya?
Well, staying on the beach for a start. Because once they drag that contraption back onto the sand you’ll be faced with a bill with more digits than a telephone number.
So stay manly out there, fellas, and enjoy the fun while you still can. Let us know if you have any more manly pursuits to share…
Featured image includes the Overly Manly Man (via Reddit)