From Guru magazine
Officer, are you asking me for a date?
- Published: 3 Sep 2011 at 08.00
- Online news:
The Bangkok Post’s Guru magazine focuses on entertainment and eating and when it does cover a serious subject, expect it to be done in an amusing way. Here’s an example.
Guru magazine comes with the Bangkok Post on Fridays. If you've ever seen it, you know it is not the most serious magazine – focusing mainly on entertainment, eating, entertainment, eating, etc.
When you do find a serious subject, you can be sure that it will be treated in a non-serious style. Here is an example, an excerpt from a column in this Friday's Guru by Guru editor Sumati Sivasiamphai. The subject is bribery – definitely a serious subject that has been in the news much lately after Chuvit Kamolvisit's revelations in parliament. Her problem, however, is that she doesn't know how to bribe anyone. How can she learn?
Underneath it all, I'm sure that Sumati using satire and sarcasm to get her point across: Bribery is everywhere in Thailand but it shouldn’t be. In other words, she means the opposite of what she says. As you read, imagine the situation described? Is this the kind of conversation you expect with a policeman who has just stopped you for a traffic violation? You can read the full column here: http://bit.ly/mXaVhg
Click button to listen to Bribes and rightclick to download
How exactly do you bribe someone?
"Kind sir, while I'm flattered by your advances, I don't think now is the time to ask me out on a date."
The moment I learned that I have failed as a Thai citizen – nay as a human being – was when I was pulled over by a cop on a day that will live in infamy. Regardless of the fact that I can't drive anyway because I'm a woman, I guess I missed the invisible sign that said "Bus Lane" when a man wearing a too-tight uniform beckoned me over. I guess the cop also missed the not-so invisible cars that were also travelling down the same lane as me, because I was his only target that evening.
After handing over my licence, the boy in brown looked at me with eyes so wide that they seemed to reveal his soul. He then asked: "So what do you want to do?"
Shocked, I replied: "Kind sir, while I'm flattered by your advances, I don't think now is the time to ask me out on a date. After all, you just pulled me over so I don't harbour the friendliest of feelings towards you at the moment."
Startled, the policeman said: "No, I mean what do you want to do about this?"
Confused, I retorted: "Noble man, I don't think it's right for you to ask me how to do your job. Imagine if doctors asked their patients to write their own prescriptions or read their own X-rays. There would be chaos!"
After a few more misunderstandings on my part, the policeman wrote me a ticket and that was the end of that.
Until I realised that I had missed all the cues that this was an appropriate situation to pay my way out of. He was engaging in dialogue with me instead of writing me up on the spot, which could indicate that a negotiation was acceptable.
After all, who wants to deal with all the paperwork and red tape down at the police station, when you can get a nice little kickback right then and there? But how the heck am I supposed to know this stuff!
treat – to behave in a particular way towards somebody/something ปฏิบัติ(ต่อ)
excerpt – a part of a longer story, speech, song, text, etc. บทคัดย่อ
bribery – the crime of giving money or presents to someone so that they will help you by doing something dishonest or illegal (the verb form is bribe) การให้สินบน
revelation – a surprising piece of information การเปิดเผย
satire – a way of criticising people or ideas in a humorous way, or a piece of writing or play which uses this style การเสียดสี, การเย้ยหยัน, การถากถาง
sarcasm – saying or writing the opposite of what you mean การเขียนหรือพูดเสียดสี แดกดัน
opposite – a person or thing that is as different as possible from somebody/something else ตรงกันข้าม
imagine – to form a picture of something or someone in your mind นึกคิด, จินตนาการ, นึกฝัน
situation – all the circumstances and things that are happening at a particular time and in a particular place สถานการณ์
violation – an action that is against a law การฝ่าฝืนกฎหมาย
exactly – precisely อย่างเที่ยงตรง,อย่างถูกต้อง,อย่างแม่นยำ,อย่างแน่นอน,อย่างละเอียด
citizen – someone who has the right to live permanently in a particular country พลเมือง
nay – no
cop – (informal) a police officer ตำรวจ (คำสแลง)
infamy – the state of being well known for something bad or evil; evil behaviour; an evil act การมีชื่อเสียงในทางที่เลว,นิสัยหรือความประพฤติที่เลว
regardless of – without being affected or influenced by anything else that happens or exists โดยไม่คำนึงถึง
invisible – unable to be seen มองไม่เห็น
beckon – to signal to someone to come towards you ส่งสัญญาณเรียกโดยการใช้มือหรือศีรษะ
target –a person, business, building, area, etc., that someone intends to attack, deal with, sell something to, etc. เป้าหมาย
licence – an official document that gives someone permission to do or use something ใบอนุญาต
reveal – to show or let something become known เปิดเผย
soul – the spiritual part of a person or thing วิญญาณ
stunned – very surprised มึน, ตกตะลึง, งงงัน
flattered – to be pleased because somebody has made you feel important or special รู้สึกได้รับการยกยอ
advances – attempts to start a romantic or sexual relationship with somebody แทะโลม
date – to have a romantic appointment with somebody นัดพบ
harbour – to have a particular thought or feeling in your mind
startled – to be suddenly very surprised in a way that slightly shocks or frightens you ผวา, ขวัญหาย
confused – unable to understand something or think clearly about it สับสน
retort – to reply immediately in an angry or humorous way to something that someone has said โต้ตอบ, สวนตอบ
noble – having fine personal qualities that people admire, such as courage, honesty and care for others ซึ่งมีคุณธรรมสูง
patient – someone who is receiving medical treatment คนป่วย, คนไข้
prescription (medication) – medication that has been ordered for you by a medical doctor ยาที่ต้องได้การสั่งจากแพทย์เท่านั้น
chaos – a situation in which everything is confused and in a mess การจราจล
misunderstanding – a situation in which a comment, an instruction, etc. is not understood correctly ความเข้าใจผิด
ticket – an official notice that orders you to pay a fine because you have done something illegal while driving or parking your car ใบสั่ง สำหรับผู้กระทำผิดกฎจราจร
realise – to know about ตระหนัก รู้
cue – evidence or information that helps to solve or understand a problem สัญญาณ
appropriate – suitable or right for a particular situation or purpose ที่เหมาะสม
engage in – to take part in a particular activity มีส่วนร่วมใน
dialogue – a formal talk between people, groups, etc. การสนทนา
write me up – to write a traffic ticket requiring a person to pay money at a police station for violating the law
indicate – to show that something is true, exists or will happen แสดง, ทำให้รู้
negotiation – formal discussion in which people or groups try to reach an agreement การเจรจาต่อรอง
red tape – documents, rules or processes that cause delays ระเบียบราชการที่ยุ่งยากและทำให้ล่าช้า
kickback – an amount of money that is paid to someone illegally in exchange for secret help or work เงินสินบน, เงินใต้โต๊ะ