I thought I would go to hell, I mean to the poll, quietly come tomorrow. I thought I wouldn't have to be a cantankerous, sardonic, petulant voter and simply close one eye and ear and accept my fate as a democratic Bangkokian who fantasises about living in SimCity. Born and raised and lost and having no wish to leave here, I wonder if the angels have fled Krungthep, or if they're still watching us metastasise - restless, stupefied, drunk by the sunlight-ricocheted concrete daze - and yet keeping on sprouting, blooming, like a tree, or like cancer.
Not as an irascible grumbler do I say this. Just as only devout Catholics can criticise the Vatican and only lepers can demand better management of their colonies, I'm a devout leper in this city of lost angels, praying to have a fine pope and a good doctor take care of me. Gone are the days when I caught freshwater fish in my soi during one of the floods, or when I swung, Cirque du Soleil-like, from the crowded steps of an overcrowded bus in a downpour and dropped all my books on a road (I can replay that scene in HD in my head forever) - Bangkok's malaise remains visible now but more sophisticated, and here I am, carping and ready yet to brave through it with my elected captain. There's no place, as they say, like home, even if that home is the Titanic littered with puke. Whoever wins tomorrow, the leper won't leave this colony.
By law I can't "influence" you at this point, hours before the poll opens, which is ridiculous, since all Facebook users and influencers - much more influential than this entire newspaper - will keep on influencing even after the voting has begun. Democracy is great and funny. In the past few weeks as the race has intensified, there's been talk about "a lesser evil", "strategic vote", "grudge vote", "scare vote", "negative vote", "I-hate-you vote", "stupid and inevitable vote". Regardless of which candidate these obscurities refer to, I'm inclined to shed the analogy of Bangkokians as lepers for another one in which we are passengers on a hijacked plane full of terrorists, piranhas, nuclear waste, and on fire.
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