HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Not everyone is a “dara nang”

Catching a cold from the heat

Still is some humor in the world

Keep Chiang Mai clean

The 12th European Union Film Festival

Not everyone is a “dara nang”

Dear Editor,

I would like to write a small commentary concerning the Thai peoples’ way of looking at farangs. I am a student at university and have noticed that many of the Thai students seem to stereotype me with popular European actors or singers. It seems to me that every time I go out with some of my friends (Thai’s) I am looked at in a weird way and they ask me why I don’t wear something more sexy, but then they tell me I’ve gotten fatter, even if I only gained a pound. How come they want me to be skinny and sexy? I asked a Thai friend of mine about this and he said it is because the only type of Farang’s which the Thai’s really see or know are the ones who are famous, such as Britney Spears or Christina Aquilera; this is why they believe that all foreigners look like this, or dress like this, or act like them. I think Thai people need to learn that there are not only foreigners who are perfect like the famous popularities that are blown around by the media, but also normal people just like the Thai people themselves.

It seems to me that way too much attention is given to the movie stars or ‘dara’s’ as the Thai’s call them, and as soon as somebody looks halfway normal they are not pretty or beautiful anymore. Thai people must learn to accept who and what they are. They can’t all look like models or movie stars, just like foreigners do not. There are lots more ‘normal’ people in the world, than beautiful goddesses or hunks.

Jennifer Marco

Catching a cold from the heat

Dear Editor,

Thank you for your weather forecast. I am a long term resident of Thailand (Bangkok), who usually comes to Chiang Mai in the summers to escape the heat of the big city. However, I must say, this year even Chiang Mai is getting too hot for my liking. Even if you write that it is normal for this kind of the year. How come this is happening? Has it to do with the Ozone layer? La Nina? Greenhouse effect? If the heat continues to rise every year it will soon get dangerous for some people. In Bangkok, old people are suffering because the fumes are too strong and the heat is pushing the temperature above bearable measures. Soon nobody will want to go out of their homes to work anymore. It is also bad in Chiang Mai because as some homes do not have air conditioning, or the owners turn it off during the day when they are out, houses heat up during the day time and when their owners come home in the evenings they get a heat shock! What about the colds that can occur right now? Going in and out of cool air conditioning in your offices can be very dangerous to your health. Everybody who works in cold air conditioned offices and goes outside in the heat often during the day should be careful not to get a cold. Let us all hope this calms down before we all get sick.

George Farrow

Still is some humor in the world

Dear Editor,

I’d like to just tell you how much I enjoy reading your newspaper. Not only the local news but also the interesting bits and pieces you manage to get from the Associated Press. I enjoy reading the detailed reports, which are brought in international newspapers, but also enjoy the funny bits and pieces you add in between. Last week (Issue 19) I especially liked the message about the man getting accused for barking at a police dog. These short funny messages keep me smiling while reading your paper. And it shows again, that there still is some humor in the world, even if it sometimes very hard to spot. Thanks for the variety.

Richard Solomon

Keep Chiang Mai clean

Dear Sirs,

I wrote you a couple of times before but one cannot say it often enough: If Chiang Mai wants tourists; they should do a better job of keeping the streets and sois clean.

It has to start with educating the children. If the children see their parents throwing paper and plastics and things on the ground instead of a garbage bin, they will copy their parents. Adults need to set an example for the little ones.

Much of the world here I assume can be seen as clean. Storeowners mostly make an effort to keep the area clean - but I have taken pictures around the city of terrible garbage, which has been left a long time around without being picked up. People should feel pride in where they live.

Please keep the waterways clean - I hear complaints from tourists’ about the un-cleanliness of the city. But it has to start from the top or from the older generation teaching the younger generation.

Thank you for listening to me and printing this letter.


Larry Peterson


The 12th European Union Film Festival

Chiangmai: 5 - 15 June 2003

Vista 12 Huaykaew: Tel (053) 404 374, 404 384

I suppose you have already heard that the Oscar for the best foreign film this year went to German director Caroline Link for "Nowhere in Africa". And as you know, that it is really difficult in Chiang Mai to see films apart from the Hollywood blockbusters, you now have the opportunity to see not only the Oscar awarded German film, but 22 more excellent films from Europe.

"Nowhere in Africa" by Caroline Link

Year released: 2002

Category/Format: Drama, 141 min colour

Principle Cast: Juliane Kohler, Merab Ninidze, Karoline Eckertz

Just before the outbreak of World War II, the German-Jewish Redrich family manages to escape the Nazi terror. Five-year-old Regina begins a new life with her parents, Jettel and Walter, on a small isolated farm in Kenya, where they lead an impoverished existence far removed from their roots in Germany. While Regina discovers the magic of Africa, her parents become desperate in the face of poverty and isolation. For Walter, his inability to cut Germany out of his heart tortures him far more than their economic plight. This remains so even when he becomes certain that the rest of his family in Germany has been murdered by the Nazis.

"The Campus" by Sanke Wortmann

Year released:1998

Category/Format: Comedy, Drama, 125 min colour

Principle Cast: Heiner Lauterbach, Sandra Speichert, Barbara Rudnik

Hanno Hackmann, a professor with a brilliant reputation and the best of prospects to be elected as university president, reflects on his duties as a husband and loving father and wants to end the affair with the attractive student Babsi. But, suddenly, he is at the center of a scandal. Hanno has allegedly raped a student! A sensation from which the disciplinary committee’s chairman Bernie Weskamp hopes to benefit with a hefty hike up the career ladder. A disgrace which comes at just the right moment for the radical feminist and women’s officer Dr. Wagner. And a story that the sensation-seeking press scramble for with every means at their command...

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