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FROM THE ARCHIVES: 10 Things I HATE About Go-Go Bars

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This list is me taking a general pot shot at no bar or area in particular rather it’s a rundown of the annoying things you can encounter on a tour of Bangkok’s chrome pole palaces that can easily spoil the fun and put a dampener on your night out.

Generally I don’t come across many of the problems listed below in my usual haunts but I always try to stick my head in places I don’t visit often to see what’s what and this is usually when the things I hate about go-go bars raise their ugly head.

10 Things I HATE About Go-Go Bars

#1 Unfriendly Doormen

Far too many of these guys studied at the school of no smiles or manners which for me is no use. They are the first faces many see as they enter a bar and a dour faced doorman who looks like he’s ready to rumble at any opportunity is not a welcoming sight.

It’s time to have those burly bouncers turn those frowns upside down.

#2 Car Alarm Techno

After making your way past the bouncer who looks like he is chewing a wasp and head through the curtain the last thing I want to hear is that Thai car alarm techno crap so many bars insist on playing.

I’ve been here before and I’m not going to go on like a broken record, pardon the pun, but the sooner bar owners realise they should be catering to their customers and not the moody maidens on stage the better.

#3 Sour Faced Staff

With the earplugs in place to drown out that drivel the “DJ” is knocking out and a seat has been found what we should see next is a smiling service chick to take the drinks order.

What you don’t want to be looking at is a scowling face that is desperate to get back to her phone or food which is far too often the case.

#4 Bad Service

Two beers and two vodka mixers is something a three year old could memorise but for some wait staff a simple 4 drink order is the stuff of scientists. Notepads and pens don’t seem to have made it into the bar world yet despite being sold for pennies at every 7-Eleven.

And when the beer does arrive it should be cold. ICE COLD. Not something hot enough to poach an egg with.

#5 Watching The Skytrain Shuffle

Go-Go Bar. Stage. Lights. Music. Girls. Sexy Outfits. Dancing.

It should be captivating, right? Of course it should but sadly what you often get is the Skytrain Shuffle.

Girl holds pole, moves just one leg by bending it at the knee and every minute or so you might get lucky and she will move her foot four inches from side to side.

Seriously, you can see more action on the BTS when it hits a bend or brakes a bit too hard than this excuse for dancing.

#6 Ladyboys In The Lineup

Another one I’ve covered here before that I’m not going to bore you with again and one I’m still waiting for an answer to.

I know, it will never come but I live in hope that one day someone, somewhere will explain the thinking behind this crazy concept.

#7 Mooching Mamasans

These big old boilers hover around trying to milk that money tit for lady drinks annoyingly asking you to buy another within 30 seconds of your girls glass being emptied while at the same time trying to snare one for themselves.

Sorry love, that’s just not gonna happen unless you are chatty, friendly and doing something to make my night better but bugging me for booze is most definitely not going to do that so take you big ole ass elsewhere and give me peace.

#8 Daft Drink Rules

Two drinks for this, three drinks for that… be it for a dancer to join you during her routine or how many lady drinks you need to buy before you can even barfine her.

Some bar owners are just as bad as the girls seeing customers as nothing more than walking ATMs.

#9 Crazy Barfine Prices

This has come up more and more of late as the number of bars increasing their base barfine rate spreads like a disease with 1,200 becoming an all too common starting price for a regular go-go dancer.

For me a 1,200 baht barfine is a physiological thing. It just sounds greedy. Ask for 900 baht and I wouldn’t bat an eye.

The 1k mark is a threshold many are not willing to cross and if bars want to keep losing loot to Line hookups that is their choice, not mine but that’s exactly what’s happening as guys are often giving the girl a little extra for some afternoon action before she gets to work meaning the bar loses out in more ways than one.

#10 No Tip Tantrums

So you’ve spent a couple of thousand baht, bought a few drinks and it’s time to be on your way as you’re not handing over 1,200 baht to barfine what could potentially be a starfish.

Then out of nowhere hands start pulling on bra tops and arms stretched out with requests for tips rolling off the lips of the little lady you’ve just bought a couple drinks for, her pal who couldn’t even crack a smile and the sulking service chick who got your order wrong.

9 times out of 10 it’s a case of dream on ladies, you’ve had your fair share of my hard earned and calling me a cheap prick in Thai just goes in one ear and out the other. If they hadn’t been so greedy I’d probably have given them a little bit of something if I’d had a good time.

See you when you see me… and off I go.

Have you got something else to add to the list that you hate about go-go bars?

I’m certain the non-smokers would have puffing punters in their top 10 somewhere or the naughty boys who enjoy bars that flash some flesh cursing the coyotes in their short shorts and vest tops.

Shoot me an email and let me know – stickboybkk@gmail.com

Stickboy aka Sticky Boy aka Mike McKay aka Mike McKwai, Wild Mike, Magic Mike, Mr Mike, and a fair few more best forgotten, is a party animal with hollow legs who loves music, current affairs, beer, food, causing trouble on Twitter, and making the most of life without worrying too much about what people think or say about his antics. You can send him stuff here - stickboybkk@gmail.com

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Opinion

More Bust Than Boom Coming For Bangkok Bars: Part 1

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Over and over I keep reading and hearing how the good times will roll again soon for Bangkok bars when the government ease measures under Phase 4 of their plan to allow life to return to normal that will see entertainment venues allowed to reopen having been shuttered since March 18.

This leaves me to think that owners, managers and customers haven’t thought things through and are being blinded by the light at the end of the tunnel to the reality of what is potentially coming.

If bar and business owners think that when borders reopen and inbound passenger flights are permitted again that it’s going to be boom time they’re going to be gravely disappointed.

In my opinion, it will be more bust and very little boom.

boom or bust bangkok bars

Of course, there is a large expat community here in Bangkok but their disposable income only goes so far and the majority of venues require tourists to stay in the black.

Even when flights are allowed to land again how many tourists from the USA, UK, Europe and Australia will be booking a ticket?

The first question I ask myself is, can they afford to?

So many people have been hit hard in the pocket over the coronavirus situation, paid off, laid off, hours cut and you all know the rest, meaning as much as they would like to return to Thailand, do they have cash to come?

Prices for flights are going to be sky-high. The good old days of discount deals are done. The airline industry is on its knees right now and a cheap two-week return ticket to Thailand isn’t going to be splashed all over their landing pages.

We also don’t know at this point what each country is going to require upon entry. To visit Thailand you might need a medical certificate and a decent insurance policy to cover you for COVID and a lengthy stay in hospital should you catch it.

Then there is the possibility of being required to undergo quarantine, not just in Thailand but upon returning to your home country. 14 days when you arrive, two weeks partying and soaking up the sun followed by another two weeks when you return home – if you’re allowed to re-enter.

morning night

Sure, I’m giving worst-case scenarios but as I said to start with, not many in the bar business seem to have considered any of these points.

All I hear is expectations of thousands flying in and cash registers going cha-ching.

And what I’ve mentioned above is just to get through the exit doors at Suvarnabhumi. But what about when they are free to do as they wish with some cash in their pocket looking for a good time?

I for one don’t believe for a single second that there won’t be a new mindset and believing you can just give customers what they had before and charging funny money for it isn’t going to cut it any more.

Unless there are some big changes by bars, in my opinion, they are doomed.

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Opinion

TAHUG – A Free And Easy Way To Make New Friends

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With daily life a little bit different to say the least right now and often feeling like Groundhog Day making new friends might be just what the doctor ordered to lift away the doom and gloom and ease the boredom.

We all know about the usual apps and websites such as Tinder, ThaiCupid, and ThaiFriendly to mention a few of the most popular ways to meet and make new friends here in Thailand but there is always room for a new kid on the block, right?

Tahug.com might be a name you have seen recently scrolling through your Facebook feeds or Twitter timelines but have you given it a go yet?

Tahug is a brand new way to meet and make friends without the need to pull out your credit card when you start hitting limits or restrictions as this platform is 100% FREE – and that’s a guarantee.

✅ No capping how many friends you can introduce yourself to
✅ Send as many messages as you want
✅ Unlimited chats
✅ No time limits or usage restrictions

When you register with the website you have 2 choices – you can either signup with your mobile number or your email address. Whatever your preference, you can be assured of no spam as that isn’t what the makers want.

Since signing up a couple of weeks ago using my email address the one and only email I received was my login PIN. I haven’t had anything else since and I do not expect to see any more either.

TAHUG - A New Way To Make New Friends

>>> SIGN UP HERE <<<

Once you sign in and start browsing the site you will find a fair few things that look very familiar – and I’m not talking about the rows of profile pictures with basic details below them.

No, what I am referring to is when you actually start interacting wiith other users and begin chatting as you will see the interface looks and feels very much like your old friend Line – with a few extras such as the automatic translation tool.

For example, you see someone who catches your eye and you send them off a quick hello to break the ice, if they accept your request but after some back and forth you find their English skills aren’t so good they can speak to you in their native language, for example Thai, and all you need to do is double-tap the chat bubble and it will translate it into the language of your choice be it English, Japanese, French or whatever you have selected.

You might ask is the Thai-Eng-Thai any good as we’ve all seen how awful services such as Google Translate are and the answer is yes. It does a pretty decent job of it.

Tahug isn’t a standalone app, although I do believe that is in the works, however, once you sign up it offers the option to put an icon on your home screen after which it will act and feel like an app.

If you have an hour to kill, fancy making some new friends, and perhaps meeting a lovely lady, or fella, then give Tagug a go.

>>> SIGN UP HERE <<<

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Opinion

Seven Weeks Since The Shutdown

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It has been seven weeks, and one day if you want to be exact, since Thailand went into shutdown mode leaving us all locked up at home with nothing much to do.

Aside from popping to the supermarket for some shopping, there’s not been much of anything to do or anywhere to go until last weekend when some restrictions were eased.

You can now go for a jog in the park or sit 2 meters away from your dining companions if you want to eat out, you can now buy booze again after the sale of alcohol was banned for a few weeks but other than that, not much else really.

St Paddy’s night with the usual suspects at O’Shea’s seems like a lifetime ago for someone like myself who is out and about at least 3 or 4 nights a week.

I miss going out for a beer with the boys, meeting my mates for a night out in Nana, and goofing around with my girlfriend doing whatever it is we do when we go out.

A lot of people are in the same boat as me with cabin fever setting in sometimes as socialising is a big part of peoples lives here.

7 Weeks Since The Shutdown

I’m too lazy to play guessing games when pubs and clubs will be allowed to reopen but for many with time on their hands, it’s all they seem to do.

I sense they are living in hope that the nightmare of being locked up alone will soon be over.

But even when bars are given the green light to reopen, what are we in for? 1 person per table? Staff in face shields and rubber gloves?

And that is just normal pubs I’m talking about, I dread to think what madness they’ll come up with for chrome pole palaces.

Will it be no touching when you go for a Thai massage? Two-hour time limits when you visit the mall?

All I can say is, we’re going to have to give it about six months before all the rules and regulations they put in place to open everything back up are overlooked and enforcement is forgotten like every other crackdown we’ve seen come and go in the past.

The shutdown might be easing but day to day life returning to normal is a long way off.

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