Chris was the tagalong addition to a small group of friends I’d invited to join me on my annual year-end trip to the Kingdom. He was a friend of a lesbian couple I’d invited, who in turn invited him. So we didn’t know each other before landing in Bangkok. In his late twenties, Chris is tall, very white, with dark hair and a nose too big for his face. But his height and limpid dark eyes save him from being homely. Some would even say he’s attractive. And he considered himself good looking enough that the idea of paying for sex while on holiday in Thailand was not part of the plan. However, being a gay man, getting laid was.
Obviously the majority of farang patrons of Bangkok’s gay go go bars are older guys. Some even qualify as ancient. Most are fat. Many bald. You look at them, especially those with that bitter scowl on their face, and think, “Duh. Of course they have to pay for sex.”
Conversely, the thinking is that younger guys, those still attractive and in shape, can get laid for free. They certainly don’t have to pay for sex back home, so it follows their sexcapades in Thailand will be free, too. But then, this is Thailand. And it is difficult to refuse the sweet smile and beautiful willing body of a Thai bar boy. Whatever the cost.
On our first night in town I started the group off easy by introducing them to Patpong’s less seedy night life on Soi 4. Chris was a hit with the fem waiters at The Balcony and had several admirers trying to flirt with him. It was funny watching his reaction. On one hand, he appreciated the attention. Probably much more than he ever got at home. On the other, he was uncomfortable; strange dark boys in a strange gay lane smack dab in the middle of what he’d been told was a neighborhood of whorehouses. When teasing him got to be old, the girls wanted to hit somewhere a bit more risque. That’s why they are my friends. I hadn’t yet called Noom, my bar boy friend and current love of my life, so wanting to avoid Soi Twilight where he works, I took them over to Tawan for some muscle viewing. Just in time for the late show.
Having visited Thailand for over 25 years, the shows at the gay gogo bars of Bangkok have lost their appeal. Hard to believe naked guys performing sex acts on stage could become hohum, but there ya go. Experiencing a show with newbies to that world reminded me of how damn exciting those shows can be. When we got to Tawan, Nut, a muscle stud who works there who is an old friend of mine, spotted me right away and came over. The girls were speechless staring at his beefy – and near naked – body. Chris, who had earlier claimed he didn’t like muscled guys, was drooling. We stayed through the show, and I made sure Chris’ lap got to participate in the grand finale. Chris seemed to be more appreciative than I have ever been about having a naked Thai boy being fucked while invading your personal space. The girls, who couldn’t stand up straight from laughter, had to be helped out of the bar.
Our second night in town we headed to Dick’s for dinner. After ordering I ran up to Noom’s bar to off him for the duration of the trip. Back at the restaurant, Noom in his typically gregarious manner, made instant friends with the girls and Chris. Or so he thought. I don’t think Chris was quite as taken with Noom as Noom was with Chris. It started with a hand shake. Then Noom looked at him, sizing Chris up, and announced, “You gay.”
Laughter all around. No offense taken; the whole group was gay, sitting at a gay restaurant on a gay street filled with gay bars. But Noom didn’t mean ‘gay’ but rather his interpretation of gay which means ’not a Man.’ That’d be a bottom to you.
Noom, in reference to his soft features and long eyelashes, immediately dubbed Chris ‘Pretty Boy’ and called him that the rest of the trip. But for tonight, Noom was there to help. In his experience gay guys only come to Thailand for one thing: sex. And the place to get sex is a gay go go bar. And Noom wanted to find Chris the perfect guy. So he immediately followed up by questioning Chris about the kind of guy he liked.
It started with, “You like big cock?”
“Um, no. I mean, yes. I mean no, I don’t want a guy. I’m fine,” Chris stammered.
Knowing better, Noom shot back, “Oh, yes! You like big cock! You Pretty Boy!”
The girls were rolling on the floor with laughter. “You want muscle boy, you want young boy?” Noom asked trying to narrow down the type of guy that would make Chris happy.
“No! I’m fine!” Chis asserted. “I don’t want a boy!”
“No, you want Man!” Noom cooed. “You Pretty Boy!”
By now the girls were hysterical and aping Noom’s ‘Pretty Boy’ cry. Chris was quickly moving from embarrassment, to being uncomfortable, to getting pissed. Noom sensed his change in attitude and was completely confused. He’d only been trying to help. He turned to me, concerned, “I no understand.”
Taking the easy way out, I replied, “he shy.”
“Oh, shy! Pretty Boy shy!” Noom crowed with complete understanding.
He backed off a bit, giving Chris some space with Chris emphatically mumbling, “I. Don’t. Want. A. Boy!”
We finished dinner and polished off a few rounds of drinks, then Noom felt it was time for his new fiends to visit his bar, Clapping his hands twice, he announced, “We go!” and led us up the stairs for showtime at Hot Male.
Tawan has a totally different ambiance than the other gay gogo bars in Bangkok. The air there reeks with testosterone, the scent of sweaty jockstraps courtesy of the bar’s beefy muscle bar boys. It’s a muscle worshiper’s heaven. Hot Male, on the other hand, is just plain sleazy, the ambiance as dark as a convict’s soul. Located where the infamous Twilight Bar once squatted, it has a reputation to uphold. And Noom too had a reputation to uphold. One of double duty. He had that Thai sense of responsibility of ensuring his new friends were happy and having a good time. And he had a responsibility to his bar mates of ensuring if anyone on the soi landed the fresh meat he had in tow, it’d be a boy from Hot Male. Poor Chris didn’t stand a chance.
But he tried. He made sure he sat with the girls and me between him and Noom. No problemo. Noom leaned across the three of us, grabbing Chris’ leg and asked, “What boy you like?”
Chris, in a fresh panic tried again. “I. Don’t. Want. A. Boy!”
So we ordered drinks instead while the parade of boys in their white shorts listlessly made their way across the stage. Noom surveyed his bar mates, looking for the perfect choice for his new friend, oblivious to Chris’ reluctance. Meanwhile the girls teased Chris cooing ‘Pretty Boy’ into his ear. I took pity on the boy and went over to sit next to him.
“Look,” I said. “He’s just trying to help. And he’s not going to stop until he feels you’ve been taken care of. So just pick a guy. He’ll come sit by you, you buy him a drink. Talk. That’s it. You don’t have to do anything.”
Reassured somewhat, Chris lightened up. But not after first checking to see what this would cost him. Chris is cheap. Really, really cheap. I slipped him 100 baht and told him that would cover it (I’d already planned on covering the check bin). And Chris took that first step down the slippery slope into the world of whoredom: he admitted that #18 looked good. Ha! I called Noom’s name, nodded at Chris, nodded at #18, and Noom did the rest. Soon Chris was joined by Toon, a dark skinned beauty. And yes, a Man. Great smile, nice chest. I left him to Chris as I heard Toon start the familiar refrain, “Where you from?”
The girls drink like fish. No pun intended. So we had quite a few rounds, growing more boisterous as the night progressed. I’d look over to check on Chris every now and then. He was becoming good friends with Toon. Maybe he was too young and too okay looking to have to be buying companionship in Bangkok, but he seemed to be enjoying the attention and I noticed his hand kept rubbing along the length of Toon’s bare leg. It was getting late and the bar would soon close. Seeing the party wasn’t close to being over, Noom suggested we finish the night at G.O.D.
Disco? Yup, the girls were ready to dance. I went back over to Chris to let him know he was off the hook, that we were headed to a club to dance. “But what about him?” he asked.
“Uh. Well,” I said, considering how best to sum up his options. “If you want him to come along, you’ll have to tip him.”
Cheap Chris came back quickly with, “How much?”
I’d already figured on covering the off fee, and I got a kick out of the ‘I don’t pay for sex’ Chris already trying to negotiate the price for a night’s companionship. Might as well just lay it out. “Just to the club, 500 baht,” I said. “If you want him to come back to the hotel, 2,000.”
“What!” Cheap Chris exclaimed. “I can’t afford 2,000!”
Uh, huh. Forget the ‘just to the club’ option. And no argument about paying for sex either. His argument was on the price. “Never mind,” I told him. “My treat.”
Hey, it’s not that I’m that generous. But playing a part in Chris’ downfall into the sleazy world of commercial sex had an appeal. I’m twisted, what can I say? More so, I knew Noom would be happy that his new friend was being cared for and that he’d scored a customer for one of his bar mates. And if you can’t drop $85 on a whore for a friend, then just what in the hell is money for?
We closed G.O.D. down that night. The six of us piled into and onto one tuk tuk for a fierce and frightening ride back to the hotel. Chris had a sheepish yet satisfied look on his face the next morning at breakfast and didn’t even seem to mind Noom blaring “Pretty Boy!” when he shuffled into the restaurant, sans Toon who’d already headed home. The next night Chris and I hit a bar on our own. You’d have thought he was an old pro by the masterful manner he displayed in buying himself a new companion for the evening. I guess his previous night’s experience proved to him the price was worth it. Everywhere we visited on the two week trip, if a gay gogo bar was to be found, Chris had a new stud riding him to sleep that night.
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