T.I.T Episode 1: The beginning

• Intro Song: Sweet Home Alabama
• General Background Information on Tom in Thailand
• Living and working in Thailand…”what’s it like?”
• When does the exotic become common?
• Career stuff and being a Grad student
• Discovering Podcasting through a new Mac and my first podcasts by AJTigger….SBA
• What to do when you outgrow roaming the streets…blogging and now podcasting.
• Grand message or purpose?….probably not here!
• Things about me you might not know.
➢ Love B&W movies
➢ Forgetful to a fault
➢ Southern conservative upbringing
➢ I’m really a male version of Bridget Jones…nerdy, dorky, clumsy…yeah that’s me!
• Closing Song: One Night in Bangkok

So, that’s a start….please email, message, question or comment and let me know how my first Podcast went. Please be gentle! Thanks so much for all support and encouragement and I look forward to sharing this journey with you!

For Direct Download: Right Click Here | The Freak Network


My First attempt at a Video Blog…

Happy Tuesday to one and all wherever in the world this finds you, whether it be morning, noon, or night. I thought i’d take a stab at doing a video blog just as a little creative experiment. I realized after I got it recorded that i look terrible, and I’m always reminded just how very “gay” I really am when i see myself on video. However, I’m going to go out on a limb and show you guys anyways just to see if anyone is interested. So without any further ramblings please go ahead and have a watch if you feel so inclined. Much much thanks for stopping by as always,and talk to you again soon!

Surprise Holidays and Copy Cats…

 dsc_0044.jpg

Happy Thursday folks!  I’m going to go ahead and warn you now that this is going to be one of those random though/self analysis sort of posts so who knows where this will go.  Firstly, I ended up with a surprise week off since we had a minor drama unfold at work first thing Monday morning.  We were having our annoyingly boring little administrative morning meeting and we got a phone call that 2 of our students had come down with hand, foot, and mouth.  Now, don’t jump to conclusions…this is nothing like mad cow disease or anything and apparently it is common amongst schools with large numbers of young children.  You get these flu like symptoms and spots like you have measles on your hands and feet.  Also, you get ulcer like blisters in your mouth, and the last time it swept through the school i got it as well.  It is HIGHLY contagious sooooo, after learning we had more than 5 cases we quickly moved to close the school for a week.  It can be dangerous for young kids, so better to shut down and let it pass.  Therefore, Tom got a surprise week off work!

Sooooo, I had meant to sit down this week and pound out a final copy of my research proposal for Grad schoo.  However, I’ve been to busy being as lazy as possible to accomplish anything productive.  I did at least manage the gym every day, so at least the week hasn’t been a complete loss thus far.  Which reminds me of something I wanted to talk about with you today.  I noticed a commercial on the train coming home for a new Thai movie coming to theaters soon.   I made a mental note to mention it today in my blog because it is something that slightly irks me.  It is a Thai movie about eccentric, comical pirates and I noticed some various low budget scenes from the movie trailer with giant squid and crabs.  The set, scenery, and costumes were blatantly copied from another blockbuster pirate trilogy which recently sailed through the box office earning millions.

Thais have to be the world’s best copy cats.  Let me give you another example that comes to mind.  I remember going to a Thai theater production a while back that was supposed to be an “amazing” and creative in dealing with gay life and culture.  There were big billboards around town for it, and some very famous Thai celebrities were even cast in leading roles for it.  So, I went with my ex to see it and all they had done was make a Thai theater version of the movie Love! Valour! and Compassion! which was written and released in the States in 1997.  There were some very slight changes, but they kept the same plot, characters, and I even recognized familiar scenes from the script.

I guess I blame the education system here for this phenomenon as Thai students are not taught to think creatively.  Children are not encouraged to think outside the box in traditional schooling, and most learning here occurs much the same way a mother bird feeds a baby bird.  It is considered rude here to question anyone older or an authority figure so Thai students will sit in class looking at you like they are following along able to understand, but not.  They are quite, and respectful, but rarely ask questions to extend their grasp of the subject being learned at hand.  You can see it here in all aspects of society.  Healthy debate is discouraged and ridiculed, and thus creativity is often stamped out at an early age.  Now, I say all this in general of course as there are of course exceptions.  I know some very creative Thai people, and thus there are those that do well in spite of the system, as opposed to growing because of the system.  Well, I think that is more than enough rambling for today, so i’m going to head off and try to get some school work done.  Love to everyone and will write again over the weekend!

The Concept of Love…

 0214_spacemates.jpg

Happy Valentine’s Day to one and all out there!  I’ve just gotten home and thought I’d reflect on this syrupy sweet day in which we celebrate our concept of love once openly once a year.  Growing up in the US, I can remember as a child in elementary school how much I enjoyed Valentine’s Day as we would make those little Valentine boxes or pouches to hang in the front of the classroom.   Then of course you’d go with Mom to the grocery store, K-mart,  Wal-mart…whatever….to chose the little pack of cards  you wanted to give your classmates.  Then you’d go home and write to Jason, Chris, Mark, or Debbie on the front of the little white envelopes and write your name on the card inside 20 or 30 times.  Then the big V-day arrived and we’d go up one by one to put everyone’s card into their pouch.  I remember how much I enjoyed tearing into each little card and there were always a couple of candy/cards thrown in for good measure, right?  I just loved the whole tradition as a child, so I made the best of the day with my students here as well.  We made cards for them to take home to whoever, and then we made some cute little heart shaped necklaces from pipe cleaners and beads to take home as well.  It was a cute and relaxing day, and i think the little ones enjoyed it.

Then it was off to Siam Paragon to buy  my Valentine his present and you’d have thought it was the mad day before Christmas rush again.  There were sooooo many people there carrying over sized stuffed animals, bouquets of flowers, chocolates, and all the other cutesy stuff that you wouldn’t want were it not Valentine’s Day.  The Thais really, really, really get into the whole spirit of Valentine’s Day and why not i guess, right?  I was thinking I was going to write about my concept of love for today, so bear with me as I explore this train of thought here for you.  I honestly think I learned to love from my family.  I have the good fortune of coming from a very caring and loving family, where warm hugs and kisses where never in short supply when we were growing up.  Sure we had arguments, and there were certainly rough patches through the years as i grew to be a man, but their love was always unconditional.  My Mom and Dad still flirt with each other to this day after all their many years together, and I see their love as an example of what I always assumed I’d find myself.  It is like that with all my family members and I have learned to appreciate this fact as I get older.  Then of course there were the endless stream of Disney movies i watched, and no matter the trouble or fabulous villan, there was always a happy ending because Prince Charming was always there in the end to save the day.

However, I learned as I grew up that not everyone has the same concept of love as I do.  Sometimes people don’t grow up in loving homes, and sometimes there can be enough heart break to make a person lose faith in the capacity of others to love or love them.  Also, I think love can be very culturally based because I have learned the word “love” can be used quite easily here in Thailand.  Is love simple?  Is love only as complicated as we make?  I’ve had boyfriends here over the years, and there have been some similarities in the way they professed their love for me.  In the west, or in at least where I’m from, your lover/partner/husband/wife…whatever….was number one in your life when you made a commitment to each other.  Partner, family, work, friends….or something along those lines are how I approach love and priorities in my life.  However, It is not so here.  I have noticed that the priorities seem to line up with family first, work second, friends, and then partner last or partner on equal grounds with friends.  It has been that way with each love interest i’ve had here over the years and I have had to learn to adapt my concept of love and personal priorities as time has gone by.  I hope that made some kind of sense, and you didn’t pause to scratch your head when you read through it.

So, I’ll close here and wish everyone lots of love out there, whether you want it or not!  I have the privilege of loving so many of you out there in so many ways, and I’m happy to get the chance today to say so.  Give yourself a hug from me, and now I must finish writing out this card I bought earlier and go get ready to have my own little Valentine dinner with my guy tonight.  Love and hugs to you and of course…talk to you again soon!

Hangover and Cardio Thoughts…

girls.jpg

So, I wasn’t going to blog tonight but i’m feeling a bit bored what with World of Warcraft down for its usual Tuesday maintenance stuff (I know, I know….don’t cringe). This is going to be one of those random chain of thoughts sort of blog posts, so if your looking for a witty focused perspective on some random topic then stop reading and I’ll catch you next time.

I had a whirlwind weekend last Friday and Saturday as another one of my old friends from Brisbane,Australia was in town. Therefore, I naturally felt obligated to make sure I spent the weekend making sure his vacation was as fun as possible. Unfortunately, for my liver and lungs it consisted of two nights of smoking and drinking in bars as that’s the sort of entertainment this particular friend prefers. Not that i resisted a whole lot though! We had a really fun weekend though, but I’ve discovered that i’m just not able to keep up with the partying like I used too. I’ve learned from experience in recent times that anything more than a night of light drinks leads to a day of suffering on the sofa under a comforter.

Yet another thing i’m starting to learn about the unkindness of age is that it seems to be getting easier to pick up those extra pounds/kilos and harder to work them off again. I’m still doing the same sort of cardio at the gym that i’ve always done, but it just doesn’t seem to be working anymore. I don’t think I eat anymore than i used too, but the same level of cardio just doesn’t seem to do it anymore. Furthermore, It doesn’t help that here in Thailand anytime you add a kilo or two everyone lets you know verbally that they notice as well. I think if the secretary at work pats me on the stomach and calls me fat in Thai one more time this week I’m going to strangle her with the mouse cord from her little computer. I tell the Thai people in my life often that, in fact, I would be considered relatively in shape in the west but such comments are often met with laughter and stares of disbelief. I heard a podcaster refer to themselves as a little “juicy” on their last podcast of theirs I listened too and it reminded me of what my father always says at home. We like folks to be a little on the ‘”fluffy” side, as skin and bones aren’t attractive where i come from.

Anyway back to my train of thought. I don’t know but lately I’m just not feeling motivated. I’m under a lot of stress at the moment with work and my studies that I think it is starting to affect my sense of well being. I’m not sleeping well and i’ve been a little more irritable than i should be with the students thus far this week. I guess it is fortunate that we’ve got a mid-term break next week so i’m going to try and “recharge my batteries,” so to speak. Was that random enough for you? Oh, and Valentine’s Day is of course this week so I’ll probably be writing some of my thoughts about this holiday later, so make sure and check back. Hope you have a good one where ever you are and where ever this finds you!