A few thoughts on Pattaya and casinos.
Although it has been rumoured for years that a 'mothballed' casino exists in the Ambassador Hotel, the current talk suggests that Larn Island is the favoured destination for a Pattaya casino.
Strange choice to my mind when you consider ease of access should be a prime consideration. If it's on an island then we will have Baht Boat taxis to rival the Baht Bus taxis. Of course the casino will have it's own official ferry but who will want to wait for the official ferry. The danger here of course is the Baht Boat ferrymen will have a reasonable idea that you are carrying a wedge of cash. There just might be a temptation to relieve you of your cash and let you swim. Also, casino takings will be down whenever there's bad weather. It's not often but it does happen.
Maybe not such a strange choice if the following is fact. There was a story doing the rounds a few years ago that the Thai families living on Larn, who'd been there for generations but never issued with land title deeds, were being forced out by a very powerful politician. A politician who recently returned to Thailand. If that's the case then a casino on Larn makes sense. Land prices on Larn will skyrocket if the casino's built there.
Oh what a tangled web we weave......
Asian casinos are different - a few years back I went to Macau for a stag weekend with a maul of H.K. rugby players. We visited the casino and monopolised one of the Black Jack tables. We were happily playing the game when a Chinese punter standing behind our seats reached over and placed his bet on my pals box. No problem so far. The croupier then ignores my pal sitting at the table and asks the Chinese punter what he wants to do with the cards. Now there's a problem and unfortunately the rugby pal who is being ignored is about 3 times the size of the China man. What kicked off led to our being shown the door but we were enlightened on the way through it. The largest bet controls the cards not the person sitting at the table. If it's the same in Thai casinos then I can only see karaoke style problems. Dead bodies.
- Looks like the bar-keeps in Bang Chang are still servicing the afternoon golf crowd. Long may it continue, I say.
- Don't forget it's Dance Anthem 3 Summer Splash at Pattaya Water Park from 5.00pm tomorrow. Head along there to catch up with some Bangkok class tottie looking to partayyyyy
- For the past several weeks, Heaven Above has turned into a classroom for all of our young students on Saturday Nights. Our young students and customers seem to enjoy the evening. This Saturday will be no exception. We will continue with this theme for a few more weeks before we turn Heaven Above into a medical ward. Coming soon will be Nurses' of Heaven. So come by tomorrow and see if you can teach our students a thing or two. Who knows maybe they will be able to teach you a thing or two [via Nutosf on Pattaya Secrets]
- Secrets afternoon opening party, 1.00pm, Sunday, March 9
- Late night venues like Marine, Insomnia and JP were closed at 3.00am this morning. The Bangkok BIB are reportedly in town so it's hard to say if this is temporary move or not. The only plus appears to be that Soi Marine Plaza was packed with ladies panicking to find a partner. Like spearing fish in a barrel somebody said........
- Party Bar, Soi 8, reopened 8.30pm tonight, (Friday)
Songkhla police brought a suspect accused of killing eight people including the director of Na Mom Hospital, Suthathip Thammachart, for re-enactment of crime scene on Friday morning. According to reports, Mr Weenus admitted to police that he killed the eight people because he could not stand her frequent night-time karaoke parties. [via Bangkok Post]
Ed. Karaoke presents a greater threat to Thai society than casinos. Death by Karaoke is a regular occurrence in Thailand whereas the worst that can happen to you in a casino is you lose your shirt, you launder your money or you get pissed on the complementary drinks!
- Pay-TV operator True Visions plans to start broadcasting commercials on its network this year, but the increased revenue will not lead to a reduction in the subscription fee paid by viewers. [via The Nation]
- We have just witnessed another important development at the Department of Special Investigations. Some 31 officers have also been transferred out to the Office for the Suppression of Public Sector Corruption. But the point is that the key officers working on the SC Asset case, related to Thaksin's alleged asset concealment - Tharit Phengdit and Pornchai Asavawattanaporn, both deputy director-generals of the Department of Special Investigations - are on the list for job transfers. Is this part of an attempt to water down the cases against Thaksin? Well, you be the judge. [via The Nation]
- Wired have published an article on how to speed up your Mac. Anybody interested?
- Deezer offers what Pandora does not
Users from outside the United States try lots of things to get access to Pandora which streams customized radio to users with US IPs only. Some succeed with the user of proxies, virtual private networks or services like Global Pandora that come and go. Others point their eyes to France to discover a music service that resembles Pandora in many aspects but is way better.
The most obvious difference is that everyone has access to the service called Deezer which does not only provide custom radio stations with music that you (could) like but also ways to search for bands or songs and play them right in the browser. All of that is possible without creating an account at Deezer.
You will need an account however if you want to create playlists, upload an unlimited amount of mp3 that you can listen to online or participate in community matters.
Information is easily accessible. While listening to the Smart Radio feature you can open a band’s discography page which does not interrupt the music. There you have access to information about albums, related artists and community members who share your taste. Only albums with tracks available will be shown.
I had problems creating a playlist though. The system accepted my input but did not add the playlist to the menu. Deezer is nevertheless a brilliant and better Pandora. [via gHacks]
- Best Torrent Search Engines - Torrent websites are much like Linux distributions, there are so many out there that it is easy to lose the track. Torrent search engines can be divided into two categories: Site search engines and meta search engines. Site search engines obviously only search the torrents that are hosted on one selected website while meta search engines crawl the databases of several torrent websites which often leads to better results.
The best way to search for torrents is therefor in my opinion to use meta search engines unless you are on a private tracker or prefer to use only one torrent search engine and no other.
Meta torrent search engines can only be effective if they are fast and update their database regularly, real time updates being the optimum. The selection of torrent websites that are crawled is the second criteria for a good torrent meta search engine.
Youtorrent came to light only recently. It currently supports ten torrent websites with the option to add another six in the preferences. The search is pretty fast and the related search terms are aiding the user in his search. Offers a Firefox plugin.
Pizzatorrent supports 15 Bit torrent websites right out of the box. The search seems just a tad faster than that of Youtorrent and they divide the results in categories which is great if you are searching for broad terms. Offers a Firefox and Internet Explorer plugin plus a Facebook application.
Torrent Finder is the most comprehensive Bit torrent search engine which crawls more than a hundred torrent sites during a search. It is slower than the other two engines mentioned already and does not list all results in one frame but separates each torrent site in their own frame which means that users will have to click through dozens of sites which makes a comparison difficulty.
Multitorrent is not really a meta crawler. It provides access to the database of several torrent websites but it is only possible to search one at a time. It does offer category searches though which the other engines don’t.
- Emma at Kind Girls
- Demi Jessica - Playboy Cyber Girl
- The following is a letter from a British citizen to his minister to complain about the passport renewal process. He appears to be a bit upset with the process and yes, it's a long letter but I assure you, it's worth the read:
Subject: Passport Application
I'm in the process of renewing my passport but I am a total loss to understand or believe the hoops I am being asked to jump through.
How is it that Bert Smith of T.V. Rentals Basingstoke has my address and telephone number and knows that I bought a satellite dish from them back in 1994, and yet, the Government is still asking me where I was born and on what date?
How come that nice West African immigrant chappy who comes round every Thursday night with his DVD rentals van can tell me every film or video I have had out since he started his business up eleven years ago, yet you still want me to remind you of my last three jobs, two of which were with contractors working for the government?
How come the T.V. detector van can tell if my T.V. is on, what channel I am watching and whether I have paid my licence or not, and yet if I win the government run lottery they have no idea I have won or where I am and will keep the bloody money to themselves if I fail to claim in good time.
You have my birth date on numerous files you hold on me, including the one with all the income tax forms I've filed for the past 30-odd years. It's on my health insurance card, my driver's licence, on the last four passports I've had, on all those stupid customs declaration forms I've had to fill out before being allowed off the planes and boats over the last 30 years, and all those insufferable census forms that are done every ten years and the electoral registration forms I have to complete, by law, every time our lords and masters are up for re-election.
Would somebody please take note, once and for all, I was born in Maidenhead on the 4th of March 1957, my mother's name is Mary, her maiden name was Reynolds, my father's name is Robert, and I'd be absolutely astounded if that ever changed between now and the day I die!
I apologise Minister. I'm obviously not myself this morning. But between you and me, I have simply had enough! You mail the application to my house, then you ask me for my address. What is going on? Do you have a gang of Neanderthals working there? Look at my damn picture. Do I look like Bin Laden? I don't want to activate the Fifth Reich for God's sake! I just want to go and park my weary backside on a sunny, sandy beach for a couple of week's well-earned rest away from all this crap.
Well, I have to go now, because I have to go to back to Salisbury and get another copy of my birth certificate because you lost the last one. AND to the tune of 60 quid! What a racket THAT is!! Would it be so complicated to have all the services in the same spot to assist in the issuance of a new passport the same day? But nooooo, that'd be too damn easy and maybe make sense. You'd rather have us running all over the place like chickens with our heads cut off, then find some tosser to confirm that it's really me on the goddamn picture - you know... the one where we're not allowed to smile in in case we look as if we are enjoying the process!
Hey, you know why we can't smile? 'Cause we're totally jacked off!
I served in the armed forces for more than 25 years including over ten years at the Ministry of Defence in London. I have had security clearances which allowed me to sit in the Cabinet Office, five seats away from the Prime Minister while he was being briefed on the first Gulf War and I have been doing volunteer work for the British Red Cross ever since I left the Services. However, I have to get someone 'important' to verify who I am -- you know, someone like my doctor... who, before he got his medical degree 6 months ago WAS LIVING IN PAKISTAN...
An Irate British Citizen.
- Democratic Dilemma - The Democratic Party has a crisis of monumental proportions; They don't know whether to vote for the "Nut" with two Boobs, or the "Boob" with two Nuts.
- Rosy, posing thoughtfully in the mirror, says to Nina, "I think I'm going to see a dietician." Nina asked, "Why?" Rosy answered, "'Cause I need to know once and for all, how many calories are in sperm." Nina replied, "I really have no clue, but if you're swallowing that much of it, no guy is going to care if you're a little chunky."