Monday, 12 February 2018

Bangkok Beggars Banana Allergy

Bangkok Beggars Banana Allergy
(I tried to make it an alliteration and failed, any ideas?)

Fri 10mar2017
Sitting with a Farang friend FF in a restaurant, table next to road, a disheveled person DP passes and stops and holds open his hands. FF gives him 20 Baht. DP doesn’t say thank you, but asks for 20 more. I have a bag with bananas that were for FF, but FF has his apple week and doesn’t want my bananas. I hand them to DP, who doesn’t want them either. FF is a do-gooder (except for proposing straight boys in third - world countries) and can explain everything: DP didn’t say “thank you” because he doesn’t speak our language, and DP might not like bananas or have a BANANA ALLERGY, hence the title.


Other weird things FF said:
When I told FF about the boy who probably stole my headphones, he said “It’s only headphones” (omitting the fact that the boy would have stolen whatever was in reach).

When I told FF about a boy who stole money:  
“He probably needed the money more than you.” 

FF said that Thais can survive in the jungle, and I cannot despite my PhD. Months later, I found the answer to that here: OK so Thais can survive in the Jungle and we couldn't. So can Monkeys. 

“They are so poor because we are so rich.” or was it “We are so rich because they are so poor.” Weeks later I found a reply “Our countries are so clean because their countries are so dirty.”

From a scientific or philosophical point of view, FF is an adherent of (the beggar has a banana allergy) whereas I am an adherent of (the beggar wants beer, not bananas). 

Do Bangkok beggars take bananas?
The above experience prompted me to make an experiment: 
how many beggars will take or refuse bananas?

When I offered bananas to the one legged beggar who has been living at the corner Sri Bam Pen / Yen Agat for years, he stopped me with a wave of his hand “mai ao, mai ao” (I don't want, I don't want) and looked at me as if I had insulted his mother. 

When I told the story to a Thai friend TF, she said the beggar is a “silly fool” (her words), he is not hungry now and cannot think ahead that he might become hungry later. Anyway, TF only gives money, because it’s more convenient for her. 


On Mon 3apr2017, I managed to force some bananas on a beggar near The Ascott on Sathorn road.

But the effort of carrying some bananas with me (at a state of ripeness that they can be eaten now or tomorrow), and watching out for beggars, became too much so I stopped this experiment before collection sufficient data for a meaningful statistical analysis. 

Rich and poor
The whole story made me think about the conception of poor and rich, have and have-nots.

Our (Europeans and places elsewhere where they have settled like USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) wealth derives partially from intellectual superiority and partially from exploiting other countries’ human and natural resources. None of it can be extended to the entire population of the world.

The premise that we are rich and they are poor is wrong. They are not poor, they live sustainable. We are not rich, we are exploiting other countries’ natural and human resources. That’s only possible because other countries are dictatorships.

If the planet’s resources were spread evenly, it would be like the Philippines everywhere. Which of my readers wants to give up their holidays in Thailand to raise other countries above the poverty line?

Copyright 2018 ChristianPFC

1 comment:

  1. Behold Bangkok Beggars Banana Ban

    Paupers Purporting to Pursue Parsimony not Plantains


    Kluay Giveaway Refusenik

    I like your friend's attitude, relaxed :)


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