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Thread: Ever Wonder the Whys? - Thailand

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    Senior Member Dodger's Avatar
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    Ever Wonder the Whys? - Thailand

    Everyday I live here I usually see something, consider something and wonder 'Why'. Now I'm a very inquisitive person so usually go around asking, discussing, until I find out the Why. Only sometimes I draw a blank and then have to guess or assume, which quite often later comes out as being miles of track of the real reason.

    So I've decided to start a thread, as collectively this forums members span a lot and differing experiences and is a great source of answering my why's and don't be shy, yours to.

    I also think because many of us have lived here a while we do not bother to normally answer what has long ago become an obvious answer, but forget of course we are all at differing stages or experience when trying to find things out.

    So not a great example of my daily 'whys' but just happens to be today's one that sparked me off to start this thread.


    So why are all gold shops painted red?

    I have asked several locals, I have determined that it is not a corporate colour, as most gold shops are owned by individuals. One local said he thought because then you could see from afar what it was, ie painted red had to be a gold shop? but that doesn't seem right to me because why then do they not paint all banks yellow or bakeries green or whatever so you can tell what they are from a distance? why only gold shops. I've tried to google it to see if there is some law, then answering my question, but I cannot find it, so why are gold shops painted red in Thailand?
    Custard should be a colour...cos I could then paint over the mess I've just made!!!

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    Senior Member marc26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dodger View Post
    Everyday I live here I usually see something, consider something and wonder 'Why'. Now I'm a very inquisitive person so usually go around asking, discussing, until I find out the Why. Only sometimes I draw a blank and then have to guess or assume, which quite often later comes out as being miles of track of the real reason.

    So I've decided to start a thread, as collectively this forums members span a lot and differing experiences and is a great source of answering my why's and don't be shy, yours to.

    I also think because many of us have lived here a while we do not bother to normally answer what has long ago become an obvious answer, but forget of course we are all at differing stages or experience when trying to find things out.

    So not a great example of my daily 'whys' but just happens to be today's one that sparked me off to start this thread.


    So why are all gold shops painted red?

    I have asked several locals, I have determined that it is not a corporate colour, as most gold shops are owned by individuals. One local said he thought because then you could see from afar what it was, ie painted red had to be a gold shop? but that doesn't seem right to me because why then do they not paint all banks yellow or bakeries green or whatever so you can tell what they are from a distance? why only gold shops. I've tried to google it to see if there is some law, then answering my question, but I cannot find it, so why are gold shops painted red in Thailand?
    i would imagine the chinese started the gold shops so hence the red and gold

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    Senior Member geir's Avatar
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    The gold looks nice and shiny on a red background........only thing I can think off. Think it's the best collour to make the gold stand out.....

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    Senior Member Dodger's Avatar
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    Now I've got my 'why' juices flowing, I have another 'why'

    Why are Thais generally not nice to domestic animals and small children? well not the same as we are from the west. Kids they seem to just like to make feel awkward or embarrassed at any opportunity. Example, yesterday Alex first front tooth fell out, he is only 6 so he was initially embarrassed, shy, feeling awkward, which was plain to see. So why did his Mum revel in this fact? firstly laughed at him a lot(not with him, at him), he obviously didn't like this and was squirming, then at the first opportunity, lets show off his gappy smile to all and sundry, again laughing at him, joined now by others? I've constantly see Thais, male and female, roughly treating kids, not harming them in anyway, not beating them, but say puling their hair or ear as a greeting? the kid doesn't like this, can you not see that?

    In a similar way, hence why I've coupled these things together, they treat domestic pets same, no not embarrassing them, but pushing them with their feet, roughly rubbing them or hard patting, yet I hardly ever or nearly never see them petting, stroking them, treating them with affection. Initially I thought, it was Thais general do not show signs of affection publicly, but they do to each other regularly. They will tell you they love fido, give him a rough pat and then push him away with disdain or little regard?

    So why has this happened here in the East and not in the West?

    There two why's for one day, now off to have a little lie down.
    Custard should be a colour...cos I could then paint over the mess I've just made!!!

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    K2
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    Considering that virtually all gold shops are owed by Thai-Chinese I believe its to do with the feng shui ... red being auspicious and high status ... much along the lines of the red packets (ang pow) ...

    Red envelopes also known as
    Its My Life .....!

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    Senior Member marc26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dodger View Post
    Now I've got my 'why' juices flowing, I have another 'why'

    Why are Thais generally not nice to domestic animals and small children? well not the same as we are from the west. Kids they seem to just like to make feel awkward or embarrassed at any opportunity. Example, yesterday Alex first front tooth fell out, he is only 6 so he was initially embarrassed, shy, feeling awkward, which was plain to see. So why did his Mum revel in this fact? firstly laughed at him a lot(not with him, at him), he obviously didn't like this and was squirming, then at the first opportunity, lets show off his gappy smile to all and sundry, again laughing at him, joined now by others? I've constantly see Thais, male and female, roughly treating kids, not harming them in anyway, not beating them, but say puling their hair or ear as a greeting? the kid doesn't like this, can you not see that?

    In a similar way, hence why I've coupled these things together, they treat domestic pets same, no not embarrassing them, but pushing them with their feet, roughly rubbing them or hard patting, yet I hardly ever or nearly never see them petting, stroking them, treating them with affection. Initially I thought, it was Thais general do not show signs of affection publicly, but they do to each other regularly. They will tell you they love fido, give him a rough pat and then push him away with disdain or little regard?

    So why has this happened here in the East and not in the West?

    There two why's for one day, now off to have a little lie down.
    these are 2 often thought of subjects of mine

    kids- i feel that my wife and her mom treat my stepson almost as an afterthought at times and a lot of times as their servant. that is not to sat they don't care for him but sometimes it almost seems they don't like him, it's weird.
    they sort of have an attitude that the kid have no rights but then to a very small degree, i agree
    i think kids are way too fawned on over here, i would like to see a happy medium of the two

    animals- i was just watching Bourdain and he was in Congo and they show a guy throwing a pig of a high boat into the water, but it is clearly hurting the pig. how did we become so compassionate with animals, since we came from somewhere that probably wasn't way back when?

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    Senior Member slampay's Avatar
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    ^^^ control and the misuse of such. I think in the cases that Dodger presents, it's just a case of 'as was done to me'. Perhaps preparing the kids for adulthood. Aka, 'tuffing up'...

    As for the animals? Lesser beings. Ya can still love them, but not on a level of another human. Different culture, different strokes. Just my opinion.
    Masterwoodsman likes this.

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    Senior Member beuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slampay View Post
    ^^^ control and the misuse of such. I think in the cases that Dodger presents, it's just a case of 'as was done to me'. Perhaps preparing the kids for adulthood. Aka, 'tuffing up'...

    As for the animals? Lesser beings. Ya can still love them, but not on a level of another human. Different culture, different strokes. Just my opinion.
    Was thinking in the same direction. As for kids I was thinking in the lines of the hierarchy in the thai society and culture. Elders are treated with more respect then younger-ones. So was thinking if we are older or on a higher level we can do whatever we want in a way of speaking.
    Animals as the lesser being for them therefore we show a little affection but there it stops.
    Stress is when you wake up screaming realizing you weren't sleeping.

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    Senior Member marc26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slampay View Post
    As for the animals? Lesser beings. Ya can still love them, but not on a level of another human. Different culture, different strokes. Just my opinion.
    i guess we are conditioned to have that feeling towards animals

    i am not saying they have to feed their dog sushi like my dog eats, but i don't understand the cruelty sometimes

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    Senior Member slampay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc26 View Post
    i guess we are conditioned to have that feeling towards animals

    i am not saying they have to feed their dog sushi like my dog eats, but i don't understand the cruelty sometimes
    You feed your doggys sushi? Maybe get a cat?55

    Try hamburger Bro, the dog Gods will pay you back. Maybe your Labby isn't so hyper to go running, just looking for a burger....

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    Senior Member marc26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slampay View Post
    You feed your doggys sushi? Maybe get a cat?55

    Try hamburger Bro, the dog Gods will pay you back. Maybe your Labby isn't so hyper to go running, just looking for a burger....
    well, it is not on the menu everyday
    but when i get sushi, i share with him, yes 555

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    I think the first two whys have been answered, so let me offer a third why: Why do they bother to put signs on doors saying Push (or is it Pull)? The doors typically open both ways.

    Do they use them in order to tell visitors that it is not a sliding door? I have made a sport of always opening the door the opposite way of what the sign says, and I think I have only experienced a one way door once or twice.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greatdane View Post
    I think the first two whys have been answered, so let me offer a third why: Why do they bother to put signs on doors saying Push (or is it Pull)? The doors typically open both ways.

    Do they use them in order to tell visitors that it is not a sliding door? I have made a sport of always opening the door the opposite way of what the sign says, and I think I have only experienced a one way door once or twice.
    In case of one way doors it has to do with safety. Going in you pull, going out you push. In case an emergency occurs and people freak out running towards the door, they just have to push to get out, if they have to pull they pile up and crush each other at the door and not getting out anymore.
    Two way doors I think they just apply that to make sure and for safety reasons.
    Stress is when you wake up screaming realizing you weren't sleeping.

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    Quote Originally Posted by K2 View Post
    Considering that virtually all gold shops are owed by Thai-Chinese I believe its to do with the feng shui ... red being auspicious and high status ... much along the lines of the red packets (ang pow) ...

    Red envelopes also known as
    That plus the gold writing on red background makes sense.

    They certainly are distinctive - you don't need to be able to read Thai script .
    Any TG worth her weight could spot one from a kilometre away.

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    Senior Member WarProfiteer's Avatar
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    Why would a business owner try to gouge a long term customer, thus alienating them and losing the long term business?

    Just seen it too many times and heard too many stories from others. You're going somewhere frequently and it's fine, then they just decide one day to gouge you on something.

    My initial thought as to why is the Buddhist tendency to always live in the now and not think too much about the future or the past. SO all the past business you've done, and all the future business you represent are forsaken for the notion of making a few baht more in the now. Still, such a silly little common practice...

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    Senior Member nelsonone's Avatar
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    ^ I actually find the reverse of that....the more business i do/send their way the more free stuff i get offered

    the guy who looks after my bike/the lady who does my washing/the lay who mends+alters my clothes/food vendors/restaurants/bars/the lady i rent cars from etc...all have offered me good discounts or waved the hand away with a smile at times when i have gone to pay them for small jobs

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    Senior Member geir's Avatar
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    I think it's because most of them are greedy little fuckers....................(with no, or in best case small brains) 555
    It never stops to surprise me as well.......The head Monk on my island just bought a house from a lady married to a friend of mine. They had issues in their marriage and the lady sold the house for 1 third of what it was worth. I go to the Monk and explain the situation, telling him that my mate payed for the house and don't want to sell.....The Monk replied: "Well up to them, if he want half the money he have to get it from his wife".
    That from someone that is not supposed to own anything in life.....(look at their smartphones, gold and whatever). Another fucked up religion!

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    Senior Member Dodger's Avatar
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    I think you are right Kev, it is the live for the now attitude, maybe also coupled with the farang he stupid with too much money!!! With a Thai buying the produce/service, they agree the cost up front, usually happily pay 50% of the cost before works begin and the rest on settlement. If the initial quote is too high, they shrug their shoulders and go get another contractor, this is how we also ended up working.

    Sadly in most incidences it does seem to continue to work for them, because along comes the next batch of tourists, new expats or business requests and the whole thing starts again, but usually at the old rate and not the new gouging rate, so that in itself also makes no sense?? Now to get round this, we have engaged our own full time maintenance manager and its his problem to go find the new contractors when the old ones turn into gouge mode!!!

    As in all things here, for some reason you do every so often find one guy who does not have this mentality, but values long term custom and loyalty, but then why becomes, how did he do this when the majority do not???5555
    Custard should be a colour...cos I could then paint over the mess I've just made!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by geir View Post
    I think it's because most of them are greedy little fuckers....................(with no, or in best case small brains) 555...
    Yep, sometimes the simplest explanations work best. And the proof is that the smarter 'business folks' actually do understand that good service means return custom, and provide it. The problem is that the dumber 'business folks' have no concept that screwing their customers will send them away unhappy, never to return. Because they're just too dumb to figure that out.

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    Super Moderator LivinLOS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dodger View Post
    So why are all gold shops painted red?

    I have asked several locals, I have determined that it is not a corporate colour, as most gold shops are owned by individuals. One local said he thought because then you could see from afar what it was, ie painted red had to be a gold shop? but that doesn't seem right to me because why then do they not paint all banks yellow or bakeries green or whatever so you can tell what they are from a distance? why only gold shops. I've tried to google it to see if there is some law, then answering my question, but I cannot find it, so why are gold shops painted red in Thailand?
    Red in Chinese thought is lucky.. Specifically lucky as in good fortune..

    Buying gold, is something you do in good fortune times.. Chinese run most gold shops.. Hence red is the Chinese color that's auspicious for a shop.

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