Y’know how just a matter of days ago I wrote a post about the gay scene in Silom, Bangkok, but neglected to write about the seedier massage and sex show joints because in my own words “that business is not for me”. Well scrap that – just a few days after writing those words, my halo snapped in half and where did I find myself? Watching a gay sex show in a Bangkok club. I’m not trying to make excuses for going to see it, but it wasn’t on my agenda at all, and my reason for going was being led by a Couchsurfing chum I was hanging out with. Curiosity got the better of me, and I was lead on to Soi Pratuchai (or Soi Twilight as it is otherwise known), where most of the gay massage places and sex shows are located.

The particular bar I went into was called Hot Male Bar – does what it says on the tin. I was led up stairs that had some of the grubbiest, frayed carpet I have ever laid my eyes upon. I guess the clientele has more pressing matters on their mind and weren’t as fussed as me about the cleanliness of the carpet, but the neat-freak in me wanted to gip. Ushered inside by one of the wait staff, I ordered a beer that cost 280 baht, which is over 4 times as much as I paid in the last regular bar I was sat in. This was when my first pang of guilt set in, as my 280 baht was effectively being used to support the sex trade in Bangkok – not something to be proud of.

Soi Twilight.

The seating in Hot Male Bar and apparently in all of these places is “in the round” so that everyone can get a decent look at the main attraction. The first act on the stage was a group of lean Thai guys (they all had ridiculously great bodies) in white underwear who were soaped up from head to toe. In all of their soapy glory they would make subtle and slow movements dancing on stage, so it was almost like watching a contemporary dance performance rather than a sex show.There were no hard willies – in this particular performance they didn’t even get them out.  

The dancers were incredibly skilled, and watching this, it was of some comfort to me to know that they were more than just sex toys to be bought. The choice of music for the dance was supremely bizarre though – “Fly By” by Blue – a not particularly amazing track by a British R&B/pop group from the early 2000s! Music choices here are generally bizarre. The most WTF? moment for me was a guy taking another guy’s cock into his hand and lip syncing along to Westlife’s “My Love” into it like it was a microphone. That is some crazy shit.

The next “performance” (and I use the term loosely) provided me with a firm reminder that I was not only watching a sex show, but that everyone and everything I saw on stage was for sale. About 15 guys were paraded around the stage in their tiny white briefs, with their permanent hard-ons poking out of the top of their underwear, and on those briefs they had badges with printed numbers. These poor guys were reduced to being numbers, and a host shouted out their numbers to the crowd like I was at a sex raffle, and I guess I was. They all had smiling faces and were being playful, winking to the crowd, but I can’t bring myself to believe they were actually happy up there doing that.

And then of course there was the actual live sex on stage. The performance space was equipped with monkey bars and gymnast rings and the performers were not afraid to use them. They managed to get themselves into positions that I had no idea existed. All a bit too energetic for me – I won’t be installing monkey bars in my bedroom any time soon. The first two pairs having sex simultaneously on stage included drag queens, and the next pair were simply as they were with no make-up or wigs. I’ve never watched anybody having sex before and I didn’t find it a turn on. Again, I guess that’s because I knew they were ultimately for sale. You get the idea. So my curiosity got the better of me, I went to a live sex show in Bangkok. It’s not something that I’m particularly proud of and it’s not something I’d engage with again. Would you?

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