Furyous Road - An Excerpt from Fury's Book
Chapter 17 Khao San Road
Feast - Soot - Coconut - Mayhem - Food - Banger - Max - Mix - Swivel - Buckets - Liquor - Don Quixotian - Strong AF - Temperamente - Scorpion - Hooa - El Tigre - La Furia - Khao Sar - Lucky Beer - Pandemonium - Berserker - Flying Tiger - Oomph - Haze - Walking Dead - Afterparty - Mac - Asians - Smooth.
Tiger had his iPhone in his hands, Google Maps on, and guiding us to Khao San Road, as we took in the fascinating streets of evening Bangkok. We were fresh in our new outfits. I was wearing a scarlet Under Armour tee a friend bought in Nam. Fake probably. But the fabric just felt so smooth. Protective as the name suggests. Tiger wore a black shirt and his fresh white Lacoste shoes.
Bangkok at night is such a sight to behold. A feast for the eyes. Small stands here and there, selling food. Exotic and mostly meat, and in snack form. On sticks, and put in bags, and usually with hot chili sauce. Real hot.
The temperature had dropped significantly, and now it felt like that Skybar night. Warm but chill. You could wear shorts and a tee whole night. It was very dark, and the bigger streets and alleys were illuminated, while some stayed shady.
I don’t know if it was this night, but one time, while we were walking to Khao San Road, there was man sitting on an elevated curb. Dirty. Face covered with something like soot. Clothes ragged. And he was holding his penis. Stroking it. Slowly. Like it was the most normal thing to do, at that time of night, at that place.
The full Thai experience.
There are two big streets in Khao San. One is for live music, but I never really went there. Not during the whole week I was in Bangkok. However, at the beginning of that street I always grabbed fresh coconut juice, from a real coconut. Always from the same lady, at the same stand. At one point she recognized me, and always offered me a cold one which was put on ice. The coconut juice became a ritual. We’d go out. I’d stop by the old lady. Get a coco juice. Sit down and sip, while I smoked camels, and nourished a Red Bull on the side. At one point I’d done this so much, I started mixing the coconut juice with the Red Bull. It wasn’t perfect, but quite tasty. A very interesting acquired taste.
Next street up was Khao San Road. You could tell it was living up to its name, by the sheer loudness of the music, while we weren’t even at the head of the street.
Utter mayhem. It was the same deal as before. The same as other Thai Soi, alleys. Same as other Thai streets and roads. Food stands lining the street, left and right. Now mixed in with clothing ones. Which would disappear inside stores, as the night progressed. It was completely crowded, and people were almost cheek to cheek, and were from all over the world. Caucasian, black, Thai, other Asian, Latino and Latina. Everywhere. The music was in full force, and was of the pop electronic type.
Tiger popped in his ear plugs, and I think I forgot mine again. There was one day were I’d remember to bring them, but then I’d misplace them, in some pocket, of some pants, or some jacket, thinking I’d lost them, only to find them much later, when we were on Krabi airport, on our way to the islands.
But seriously, just the music alone was enough for me to love the place. Love it. When I’m in a party ballout mood, I love my music loud. To the max. Just thinking about it now, reminiscing, makes my hearing capability drop a few notches.
And then the people. Man. I love a good melting pot. A good mix. Stirred with flavors from all around the world. That for me, right there, that’s a good party. The people interact better. More open, and openminded. No fighting, mostly love and kindness and generosity.
However, we were in Bangkok, Thailand, capital of pickpockets and thieves and whatnot. And there were ladybois and salesmen and women strolling up and down Khao San Road. So your head had to be on a swivel twenty-four seven.
By decree of the Tiger, the first thing we did was grab the infamous liquor buckets. Plastic ones. Like the ones kids play with on the beach, making sandcastles. Well, the only castles we’d be making with them were sky castles, after we’d be blasted off our asses, after tanking three plus buckets of hard liquor. Don Quixotian.
We walked up and down the street, once or twice, comparing the prices of the stands. We eventually settled on one. Which had the best copy we’d seen. The stand had a big sign, with one sentence done with a marker.
STRONG AF BUCKETS.
Can’t get any better than that. The copy was clear and concise, and tells the customer everything he needs to know.
Tiger ordered Long Island, which is his signature, and I vodka Red Bull. As the week progressed, and I ordered more, I’d switch it up to sangsom, which is Thai whiskey or rum. Nasty shit. Tastes like medicine or something. You just drink it to get fucked up.
We fueled up, and Tiger took pictures, and some videos. As he did this a vendor walked by, selling scorpions. On a tray in full display. Usually two lines of them. Small ones, big ones.
I said to the guy, ‘I want one.’
He waved along the black deadly looking creatures, which were lined up elegantly in two neat rows.
I pointed to the biggest motherfucker he had.
If you’re gonna do something, do it right. How you do one thing is how you do everything. Ballout.
The vendor took out a calculator, and punched in some numbers. The price. I nodded, and paid the man. Cash. The man left.
Tiger took a video. I took a huge swig of my vodka bucket, spilling all over the place. Neck, mouth, t-shirt. Then took a huge bite of my scorpion. First thought that darted through my head was that it tasted just like chips. Salty, crunchy. The insides were a bit chewy though, if they hadn’t been prepared well. The flavor for the rest hadn’t had anything special to offer. Nothing rich, nothing spicy, nothing hereby.
Tiger asked, ‘What did it taste like?’
I didn’t know what to say, and the vodka was crushing my comprehension and ability to be eloquent.
I said, ‘Hooa.’
Time flew by like a motherfucker. We did the Khao San Road things. Over and over again. We drank the buckets and shared it with random strangers. Women, men, ladybois. We took photos, selfies, and with random strangers. I ate scorpions. Plural. Tiger didn’t. I bought a bracelet that said I heart pussy.
We walked up and down the streets, chatting up women. Beautiful ones, and the lesser. Met some Latinas, a lot of Argentinians. There I found out that they are more European than South American. Modernized. Western, almost. Not the warm, open vibe most South Americans have I encountered. Cold, rather. Chilly, sometimes. With the hot blooded temperamente though. Which I met more than once, as I got into some squabbles with Latinas. Almost all Argentinians.
Tiger and I got to say our signature lines.
Whenever a mamacita would ask our names, Tiger’d say, ‘Mi nombre es el tigre. El acción tigre.’
I’d say, ‘Mi nombre es la furia.’
We had a motherfucking blast. The girls would either be thunderstruck. Dumbfounded. Or they’d straight up burst into laughter of disbelief.
The middle of Khao San Road is where it was at. Right in front of two bars club pub things. Khao Sar, and Lucky Beer bar. Right on the street. In front of Khao Sar were tables and chairs, elevated. In front of Lucky Beer, the same. With a fence in front of the tables and chairs. In between the elevated curb and fence it was utter Khao San pandemonium.
Where the music was balls out loud before. Here it was berserker crazy. Two black big music boxes were adorned up high and in the corner, of both joints. Facing the middle of the street. Everyone had buckets or a drink in their hands. People were feeding each other that hard stuff. Via straws, or just straight up shoveling it in their mouths. I was the latter. I fed many a people strong AF buckets.
A thing that I’ll always remember was this Thai Lady with a perpetual smile plastered on her face. And who sold Thai cigars. Far from Cubans. More like cigarillos. Thin and long. Thicker than cigarettes, thinner than cigars. Rolled from what appeared to be leaves. Something like bamboo leaves. Bamboo cigars, perhaps. The ones I bought there had seal on them. Just paper. It said, Flying Tiger. What a name. After that I called every one of those Thai cigars I bought Flying Tiger Thai cigars. How can one not?
First I bought one. Just to try, you know. Same same with the scorpion. You try it, you like, you buy more. Don’t be an idiot. The Thai lady and I had done some bargaining. No, that much baht, no that much baht. I’ll buy more later. Give me this one for that much baht, and I’ll buy five more later for that much baht. The same old story.
Eventually, I put the Flying Tiger in my mouth. The Thai lady lit me up. Service included. Lots of vendors did this. A kind of customer bonding. Since they all sold the same products, they had to differentiate. And the only way to do that is to personalize. Optimize the relations with your buyer. He likes you, he buys from you. That’s it. Sufficed to say, the whole week I stayed there, I almost only bought from her. Treat your customers with respect and dignity. With that little extra oomph. You won’t be disappointed.
The bamboo cigar tasted like plant. You know, when you take a leaf from an outdoors plant and put it in your mouth. It also had a very toasted, burned flavor to it. More toasted than Lucky Strikes. Also when you lit the cigar really well, loads of flames and sparks shot off from its end. It couldn’t be healthy smoking that thing. Much less every day. Much less tons of those things, for a week long.
I liked it and kept my word. Bought them in bulk, for the whole night.
The whole night passed faster than a vodka shot hitting you. It was haze. Buckets and dancing and talking to strangers, men and women, and then hitting the Seven Eleven, watering up, sobering up, sitting on the elevated curb in front of the Seven Eleven, talking to the homeless, and giving them change, and then hitting the streets again, repeating the whole process until the clock struck two am.
Suddenly it was Walking Dead. After our last interaction, with some Latinas, after exchanging contacts, Tiger and I looked around us, and what earlier was the life of Bangkok, was now a post-apocalyptic scenery.
How in God’s name was that possible?
The next day was way worse. That dreadful Monday. But in that moment I didn’t waste much time thinking about it and just flipped a switch. Without a word, Tiger and I knew it was time for the after party move.
People always ask me, Hey Fury what do I say to a girl? What’s your opener? How do you do it?
Just walk up to a girl, and say hey. Or what’s up? If she digs your vibe she will respond accordingly. If. If she’s not, she won’t. That’s it. Move on. IDGAF. And neither should you, my friends. And if this is a woman reading this, she knows. Way of the world. We all filter each other. On a daily basis. With all things. Whether we like it or not, admit or not. Facts.
Therefore, here’s what we’d say, which was as simple as eggs on toast.
Where is the afterparty?
So we got the move. Now the play was a full court press. An all-in. Which was walking up and down the street, methodically, and thoroughly, and talking to every woman in sight. Most of the women were okay looking, pretty, or just plain very attractive. The annoying part was that it was slim pickings.
At one point Tiger’d veered to my left and I was near the McDonalds and Seven eleven at the beginning of Khao San Road, where we actually started the night. And I saw three Asian girls, and I stepped closer, and probably said the line. I’m not sure cos of the vodka amnesia, the sleep deprivation, the fatigue. But the line didn’t really matter much, cos everything after that went quite smoothly.
If you want to hear more, A Fury Novel is available here!