Spoof on Soi 6


Yesterday I was drinking with my good mate Fabo at the Buffalo Bar. It was empty of farangs. Most Europeans had stayed home to watch Euro Cup 2012 at home. The girls at the bar wore long faces. Few had had a customer in weeks. They huddled around Fabo and me, as if we were dealing out free food.

“Let’s get out of here.” The 37 year-old Charleroi native suggested after finishing his Heineken Classic.

“Where to?” The sky was black with monsoon rain.

“Soi 6. We can celebrate your Independence Day with some Brits.” The buzzcut Belgian seismic explorer didn’t like the English. He didn’t like the French either. The Dutch were okay, but only because they made Heineken.

“It’s July 3rd.”

“Then we must drink more beer to make our time machine go into the future.”

We pried ourselves from the Buffalo girls and got on my scooter. I drove the back roads to Soi 6. A few drops of rain dotted the street. The wind was blowing hard from the sea. There was going to be a deluge. We made it to the Queen Victoria Pub without getting wet. I parked the scooter on the street. Girls from the short-time bars called for us to join them. A loud crack of thunder shivered through the electric green air. Fabo and I ran across the street to the Red Point and made it under the awning as three inches of rain fell in one millisecond.

“Bon chance, eh?” Fabo led me inside the bar. Tottenham Nick and four mates were stationed in the Bus Stop Bar. My entrance was greeted with anti-American insults. I told them, “God fuck the Queen.”

The teabags groaned with revulsion.

“Fucking you wish you had a queen.”

“There’s plenty of ladyboys across the street.” Kathoeys were very popular on Soi 6. They were men and men like sex more than women.

“I’ll stick with good old Queen Bess.” Tottenham Nick ordered me a gin-tonic and then asked, “You wanna play ‘Spoof’?”

“Never heard of it.” Fabo was settled with his Heineken.

“Great.” Nick had plenty of drinking games. Most of them consist of getting as much alcohol down his gullet as his brain can handle without his stomach revolting in dismay. “You play ‘Spoof’ with three coins. Everyone put out their hands and you have to guess how many coins are in everyone’s hands.”

“Oh.” It seemed simple enough.

“Whoever loses buys a round.”

“I lost the last game.” An Atlanta Reb declared with a red face from the end of the bar. “We have to get our 4th of July victory.”

“Why not?” I would have stood a round for America’s birthday anyway.

There were eight of us.

We held out our hands.

The count at most could be 18. The least zero.

I tried to guess what everyone was holding and failed miserably, yet managed to get knocked out thanks to a lucky guess and was rewarded with a gin-tonic.

Not too strong, because the bars on Soi 6 never pour full measures.

The girl behind the counter was cute.

Skinny too.

“Watch out.” Nick knew my taste run to thin.

“No worries.” My wallet was also thin.

Down to my last 1000 baht.

At least until after the 4th of July with my ATM card arrives from the States..

Nick called for another game. I couldn’t refuse and lost. Another gin-tonic and my bill was 600 baht. I had 400 left for food and I thanked Nick for the education.

“Not a problem. Happy Fourth of July.”

“It should be.” The ATM card better come.

Outside I tried calling Scoby’s on Sai 3 for a pizza. A small cost 230 baht. The rain had let up for a moment. Two girls tried to pick me up. I brushed them off. I was faithful to Mam, which was easy when you had no money in your pocket.

No answer from Scoby’s

“What happened to Scoby’s?” I asked Fabo.

“He went out of business. Now there’s a new pizza there. The worst pizza in the world.”

“No thanks.”

“Then we go back to Buffalo.”

“Why not?”

It was July 3 and I had learned something new by ignoring an old lesson.

Never gambled after drinking, unless you want to lose your money, especially at Spoof.

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