• Acclaimed bestseller that explains the perplexing charms of Thai life.

• Definitive source on Thai pop, trusted by locals, experts, media, students and visitors.

• Iconic style book for designers, authors, artists and curators.

 

This pioneering celebration of Thai pop and streetlife has been totally revised to reflect the dramatic changes in Thailand. With a contemporary eye and two decades” experience, the author delves beyond the Thai clichés to reveal the casual, everyday expressions of Thainess that so delight and puzzle, from floral truck bolts and taxi altars to buffalo cart furniture and drinks in a bags. Full of savvy insights into the impromptu creativity behind the exotic image of Thainess. Like no other book, Very Thai captures the quirky vigour of the Thai street.

 

 

70 Chapters • 320 pages • 591 Colour Photographs

Foreword by Alex Kerr • Afterword by Pracha Suveeranont


Very Thai Blog
March 16, 2019

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Supporting College students Each and every University Night time

How To Write a solid Essay?

Begin with the go and beginning up to the conclusion. That’s the straightforward solution to the query, “How can one compose a robust essay? ” But we can easily provide the procedure much more details. First, and foremost, it is important to completely understand the question and/or issue about which the essay will be written.

So, read the question or the subject matter about which you will write. In many instances, specifically in college options, the teacher or professor is not looking for some secret expertise or some innovative, earth-trembling opinions from students. They are seeking expertise. How much information do you possess concerning the specific concern or subject.

Look Closely

Anywhere from the issue or even in the information you possess studied there are numerous key points, bits of practical information and facts or specifics that ought to be the anchors to your essay. You require some thing to hold you to the way. Make use of the crucial phrases and words to provide some assistance while you create. When you do this, don’t be afraid to put down a rough draft if you have time to do so. In any case, keep to the crucial ideas and also to the original issue.

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Be capable of Sum up

When you can solution the query or create a obvious statement in regards to the topic it will be possible to keep on track while you develop with the essay. Offer an summarize or a couple of paragraphs that status your case. Utilize the outline to guide you through the producing, in addition to all those key phrases and words. Consider these details as milestones that label the journey towards the end from the road.

It will help to possess a reliable introduction. 1 wonderful entertainer and speaker stated you will need to let them know what you will say, say it then inform them what you just stated. In the comparable vein, you should have a strong guide to prepare the way in which for the bulk of the essay. This may be a few straightforward phrases, forget about.

Don’t be cute. teachers, managers and Professors are not in business to become interested. They need to learn. If you know, they want to know! So, stick to the point and don’t try to be a comedian. Never take from other people. Cite your sources if you quote or support your essay with information from others. Give credit score where credit rating is due.

As you move through your essay, always be on the lookout for those detours. Over the course of many webpages you can easily become part-tracked. Remain focused by referring to your outline for you, your essential words and phrases and also to your introduction. Once read your work at least. It’s better to read it through twice to see if you missed major points or strayed from the path. These are the basic principles of the solid essay.

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February 19, 2019

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Serving Learners Any School Night time

How Come Fingers Warmers Warm Up When Open to Oxygen?

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When a man or woman wished to hot their hands and wrists in past times it was essential to adhere them in cover wallets or wear a set of excellent mitts. At some point, a creative inventor released battery pack-run electric socks and hand warmers that supplied short term alleviation.

In recent times, the task of warming up fingers has turned into chemical operations or another strategies. However how do these newest palm warmers work? First, and foremost, it’s necessary to view these as small packets that are held in the hand or attached in some way to keep the hands warm during outdoor activities in cold weather. They do not necessarily continue to be hot on a regular basis and will not be a alternative to remaining inside or heating up the palms in another way.

Many of these fingers-warming up packets have some type of sticky that could secure them to garments. But are not meant to be organised immediately to the skin due to high level of heat generated. A lot of them will hot the palms for at least thirty seconds. A few of the more advanced and much more expensive goods maintain heat for 12 hours or more.

There are some distinct types of palm hotter. This list contains air-turned on styles that use a mix of components such as activated carbon, cellulose, vermiculite, water, salt and iron. The procedure by which they develop temperature when open to atmosphere is called exothermic oxidation. (Wikipedia) Essentially, this kind generates temperature once the steel is oxidized. The carbon will help accelerate the reaction whilst salt works as a driver.

There are more operations for creating adequate temperature to warm the fingers. But those that become hot when open to air depend on a really basic normal procedure. Technically, this method is recognized as oxidation. Actually, the high temperature is produced as soon as the iron component rusts. When air flow permeates in the package the oxygen in our oxygen actually starts to interact with the metal. As the iron oxidizes (rusts) warmth is generated. Co2 contaminants along with other ingredients support spread and maintain the high temperature by means of this personal-comprised package. There are substances that when selecting a person for a job, what do lilliputians consider more important than ability? control the warmth so the stage remains comfortable sufficient for warming up the hands. When every one of the steel debris in a single package deal are oxidized, this process halts. The modern air-turned on patterns preserve warmth for a period following the oxidation is carried out.

Home heating padding for other uses employ a comparable approach. Taking out the covering from one of those patches allows atmosphere to start the oxidation process in pieces of metal material. Typically, the air-turned on fingers hotter cannot be reused.

Heating up operations include crystallization and utilizing a platinum driver. The crystallization form of hands warmer becomes heat from crystals of “supersaturated remedies. These could be recharged and reused. A compact, steel triggering gadget that is in the pad is snapped. This begins the entire process of crystallization.

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February 7, 2019

City Life

Very Observant

An interview with Very Thai author, Philip Cornwel-Smith, In Chiang Mai’s City Life magazine.

Exactly 25 years to the month since he first visited Chiang Mai, before settling in Bangkok, Philip was interviewed by City Life editor Pim Kemasinki, who did her first paid writing two decades ago for the magazine Philip was editing, Bangkok Metro.

“Thais are not allowed to have fun with traditions,” said Philip Cornwel-Smith, author of the wildly successful book on Thai popular culture, Very Thai, now in its 10th printing and second edition. “It is very difficult to go against the master template, so Thais have always got their novelty from bringing in things from the outside. Being very receptive to imports, Thais have fun with it. God forbid you have fun with traditions!’

Philip has a knack of saying something obvious, or seeing something interesting, that hadn’t been said nor seen before. Which is why his book, published in 2005 (and seen prominently displayed in every bookshop nationwide ever since), took the country by storm. Here was this Englishman showing us Thais an embarrassment of cultural riches that had previously gone unappreciated. It was discombobulating, inspiring, empowering and most of all sanuk.

Having studied word history at Sheffield University, where the focus was less on wars and nation building, and more on culture, invention, religion and other such factors that build and destroy nations, followed by years working for Time Out London, Philip had a solid background in looking at culture from different perspectives. Serendipitously, on a layover in Bangkok on the way back from Australia in 1994, he was asked to start Bangkok’s first city listings magazine, Bangkok Metro, which would a focus on popular culture.

“Within four days of being in Bangkok I found myself editor of a city mag which soon had 1,000 listings,” said Philip. “People were instantly shocked to learn of so much variety in the city. The transport problems in those days meant that it took two hours to travel from Ekamai to Lumpini, so most people didn’t venture far out of their five or six known areas. But when they saw in Metro how many things were going on, they began to venture further. The mag was all about pop culture. I was coming at it with outside eyes, but it didn’t take long to become a semi-insider. With my background, I had a view that popular culture is an attraction that people would travel for. Up to that point it wasn’t treated with the seriousness of formal culture; there was shame associated with street life that city-sophisticates were embarrassed by.”

As not just an observer, but an influencer of Bangkok’s pop culture, by the time Philip left Metro in 2002 he had begun to put down thoughts and ideas that would eventually come together in Very Thai.

“I’d become fascinated by then-obscure things such as the ecology of the streets,” Philip explained of how his book came about. “In Thailand so many things are to do with rice and monsoon cycles, and this explains so much about the people, especially the need for village communities to develop in a reciprocally helpful way. This value was brought to the streets of Bangkok with the mass migration of rural people into the city. The co-op ethic is vastly different from the formal bourgeois attitude of the urban people: open shop houses, street vendors looking after one another’s stalls and even kids, motorbike taxis being socially helpful by directing traffic, running after thieves and delivering packages. It is a reciprocal village value but in the big city, which gives Bangkok a warm charm you don’t get inside the malls.”

“I wrote the book thinking there would be a market amongst expats like me,” he continued. “But I was as surprised as anyone at the massive splash the book made. Immediately the biggest and most loyal fan base became the young Thai Indies in the creative industry. I have been told that the book was almost definitive for them; they had been aware of these things, but because pop culture wasn’t treated seriously, they weren’t legitimate topics to work with. Suddenly low culture was put into a high culture format — an illustrated hard cover book — it was like putting something lowly on a high-status plinth. It suddenly legitimised these things and opened them up for exploration.”

Very Thai asked questions and attempted to offer explanations for such random and obvious things as the Thai sniff-kiss, why Thais use those ubiquitous thin pink napkins, why motorbike taxis wear different coloured vests, and what’s up with all the neon lights?

“A lot of these things soon became cultural signifiers,” said Philip. “The idea that middle class Thais would go around taking photos of street vendor carts was absurd until the book came out. Today you have places like Plearnwan in Hua Hin which is a virtual theme park for such streetlife. What was interesting to me was that none of it was wholly traditional and none of it was modern. It was all hybrid. Look at the neo-classical architecture of shop houses, or the vehicles decked out in auspicious décor. Tuk tuks were originally Italian, then Japanese, but even though 34 countries around the world use the tuk tuk, they are very Thai. They used to have words such as Daihatsu on them, but after the 1997 crash they started having ‘Thailand’ emblazoned on the back with red, white and blue colours. If you really look at them, they are a short stubby vehicle, but with a real elegance, because they use ancient forms and lines of oxcarts and long tailed boats.

Thailand saw such great change between the end of the Second World War and the early 2000s. It wasn’t a slow cultural change; it was a deluge. This led to a lot of impromptu solutions to things. Especially with the low income people – they began to jury-rig things, and do a lot of improv. This led to a great amount of creativity. You can see this clearly when thinking of the Thai temple fairs. It is little known that they came about when Field Marshal Plaek Phibunsongkhram, in the 1950s, promoted them as a way to bring modernity to rural villages. Technology, modern medicine, outdoor cinema propaganda, these were all introduced, as a national policy, through temple fairs. People would then localise them to their own tastes. I have noticed that there are a lot of taboos about updating traditions, but Thais have a natural sense of fun and creativity, so they played around with new and modern imports. It’s quite interesting to see how, whatever the authorities do, simply becomes less fun!”

From observing pop culture phenomena, Philip has just about turned into one himself, with fans of the book sometimes asking to take selfies with him. Very Thai has been subject of numerous artworks and exhibitions and Philip is a frequent guest lecturer at various universities. One designer wrote recently on Facebook, “The defining moments for me as a Thai designer, both in was the mid-2000s. were the discovery of the book Very Thai, and visiting the Isaan Retrospective exhibition at TCDC.”

Which brings us to why we have chosen now to interview Philip who, until the end of this month, will be co-curating a fascinating little exhibition at TCDC Chiang Mai called Invisible Things. Together with TCDC and the Goethe Institute Bangkok, Philip and exhibition designer Piboon Amornjiraporn put together a collection of 25 everyday items which ‘we take for granted and no longer perceive, but which in fact influence our consumer behaviour’, according to the exhibition’s booklet. The selection of Thai objects echo a collection of German objects on the other side of the room, curated by Martin Rendel, which are on a tour which started in China.

Displayed are packets of mama found in every single Thai household, the largely unnoticed dragon jars sitting in nearly every garden, the sin sai white strings used in a bewildering number of ways from house blessing ceremonies to greeting a guest, and the omnipresent fisherman pants which Philip describes as Thai to the core, “Many cultures have some kind of wrapping trousers,” explains Philip. “Yet it is known internationally as a Thai thing. I find it very Thai because it is extremely flexible and adaptable, infinitely expandable and practical. It represents Thainess internationally.”

“One classic example of an invisible thing is the red Fanta bottle. Interestingly Thais prefer drinking green Fanta, yet millions of red Fanta bottles are left open on alters, shrines and spirit houses nationwide. Next to flowers and incense they are probably the most common offering. There is no definitive explanation for this so I called my spirit medium friend — as you do in Thailand — and was told that the red represents blood which the low spirits, the demons, like. Other people say it’s simply because the bottles are sturdy and don’t blow over or that spirits want modern pop drinks too. Whatever the reason, they are found everywhere, even by the feet of the Yaksha giants at Suvarnaphumi Airport!”

Philip went on to offer a warning, however, that the era of localising imports into Thainess is nigh. “With modern communication you can get everything instantly. We are no longer a decade behind Milan in terms of fashion, because of YouTube. There is no delay in knowledge getting to Thailand. People want objects in their purest forms and they can both afford them and have them immediately — whether a Samsung tablet or a handbag. Every culture is a hybrid to some degree, but the whole world is facing unrelenting sameness. Because of the ability of digital technology, innovation isn’t happening as much in the physical form. It’s shifted into a different realm, one that’s not tactile. Whereas you used to improvise and create a hybrid, now you just get the thing you need to do the job. It’s samey everywhere. Invisible things are becoming visible.”

Invisible Things Exhibition
at TCDC Chiang Mai
Open 10.30am – 8pm
Tel. 081 833 4566
Until the end of February

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Tags: #Germany 


January 13, 2019

Bangkok Art Biennale Symposium

 

Very Thai author Philip Cornwel-Smith will take part in a panel discussion in the symposium for the 1st Bangkok Art Biennale (BAB) on 28 January 2019.

He also wrote an essay in the official BAB catalogue book, ‘Scary Monsters & Super Happy Art’, which touches upon the influence of popular culture as an increasing subject matter of Thai art.

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Tags: #academic #art #Bangkok #culture #events #exhibitions #international #photography #popularculture #talks 


December 22, 2018

Saran Yen Panya

“The defining moment of design students like me was the mid 2000s. There are two: the discovery of the book Very Thai, and visiting to Isan Retrospective exhibition at TCDC. The upshot was: how to think and how to work as a Thai designer from that time onwards.”

– Saran Yen Panya, designer and director, 56th Studio

Writing on Facebook about his design for the exhibition ‘Look Isaan Now’ at TCDC Khon Kaen, 2018-19

 

 

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Tags: #book #design #exhibitions #popularculture  #Thailand 


December 15, 2018

World in Motion: Bangkok

World Premiere screening & talk at Bangkok Design Week in TCDC on 26 January 2019

Bangkok Design Week 2019 opens on Jan 26 at TCDC with the World Premiere of World In Motion: Bangkok, a documentary series about visual culture that had its Bangkok iteration filmed in the city in 2018. Very Thai author Philip Cornwel-Smith is interviewed in a segment filmed at Wat Maha Butr in Phrakhanong, Bangkok, site of the shrine to the ghost Mae Nak Phrakhanong.

After the screening, Philip will join the panel discussion with directors/producers Graham Elliot and Roswitha Rodrigues.

http://www.bangkokdesignweek.com/bkkdw/program/4290

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Tags: #art #Bangkok #culture #design #documentaries #events #festivals #interviews #talks #tcdc #Thailand #video 


November 24, 2018

Invisible Things

Exhibition of ‘Very Thai’ style everyday objects from Thailand paired with ordinary objects from Germany. TCDC Chiang Mai’s show during Chiang Mai Design Week 2018. Running November 24-2018 till 3 February 2019.

   

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Tags: #ChiangMai #design #events #exhibitions #Lanna #popularculture #streetlife #Thailand 


September 6, 2017

Thai Pop Icons: Mysteries & Masterkeys

BNH Hospital, Bangkok

VT Talk BNH Thai Cliches 13-0205 title

Keynote talk by Philip Cornwel-Smith on ‘Thai Pop Icons: Mysteries & Masterkeys’ to an audience of new arrival expatriates in Bangkok. The event is hosted by BNH and held in BNH Hospital.

Posted in: Blog, Events,

Tags: #culture #events #expatriates #medical tourism #popularculture #streetlife #talks #Thailand 


August 29, 2017

Thai Pop Icons: Mysteries & Masterkeys

BNH Hospital, Bangkok

VT Talk BNH Thai Cliches 13-0205 title

Keynote talk by Philip Cornwel-Smith on ‘Thai Pop Icons: Mysteries & Masterkeys’ to an audience of new arrival expatriates in Bangkok. The event is hosted by BNH and held in BNH Hospital.

Posted in: Blog, Events,

Tags: #culture #events #expatriates #medical tourism #popularculture #streetlife #talks #Thailand 


May 17, 2017

Bangkok’s Street Food Future

Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand

Panel discussion on the future of streetfood in Bangok, after the city authorities start moving it out of some parts of the city

7pm, Wednesday 17th May 2017

An apparently misreported comment from a Bangkok city government official set off a storm of protest recently, when he was quote as saying all street food would be banned in the capital. The government has rushed to reassure roadside gourmands that this is not true – Bangkok is in fact planning an international street food festival. But street food vendors have been moved from some city centre areas, and the authorities say they will enforce stricter hygiene, and try to clear pavements where they are blocked, leaving lingering anxiety over the future of the quintessentially Bangkok cuisine.

The need to clear pavements and ensure food safety are legitimate concerns – but the BMA’s record of cultural sensitivity and flexibiity in enforcing its edicts is not encouraging. There are disagreements too over what defines ‘street food’ – some of the finest examples are produced in shophouses, open to the street.

Speakers:
Chawadee Nualkhair is the author of “Thailand’s Best Street Food” and writes the blog Bangkok Glutton.

Piyaluck Nakayodhin is the publisher of “Street Food: 39 Great Places Under 100 Bahts”.

Philip Cornwel-Smith, a freelance writer and editor specializing in culture and travel, is the author of “Very Thai. Everyday Popular Culture”.

David Thompson is a celebrity chef who has run several successful restaurants in Australia, UK and Thailand, including the Nahm restaurant in Bangkok, and is the author of “Thai Street Food”, a collection of this favorite 100 recipes of the street.

Join us for what promises to be an invigorating discussion with some of the city’s greatest street food afficionados.

Members: free, Non-members 450thb, Thai journalists and Students with VALID ID: 150thb

Posted in: Blog, Events, Media,

Tags: #Bangkok #culture #events #FCCT #food #streetlife #Thailand #tourism #tradition