Foodland on Ramkamhaeng
So I went shopping last night, late last night. I know, it’s a dreadfully exciting business – late night shopping, but this was indeed a special occasion.
I like the Foodland on Ramkamhaeng for odds and ends of old favorites like deli meats and cheese. Once or twice a year I decide to make sandwiches for a little while, so I hit the Foodland. It’s also the only place I can find the Duang Dee hill tribe coffee that I’m so fond of, worth noting if you like locally grown coffee. So that’s that, I was shopping.
But the big excitement came when I got to the checkout line…..a major Thai celebrity had also decided he needed to grab a few things. A comedian in fact, Udom Taepanich – complete with his iconic hat. My companion was less impressed with the presence of greatness than she was with the general confusion and slowness it created amongst the cashiers, which seemed to irritate her.
The whole scene made me realize that I haven’t written much about local comedy, and so I’ll seize the opportunity here and tell you a little about my favorite form of Thai humor.
Without a doubt, the most interesting to me is the Sam Cha, which is a group of two or three vocalists who sing improvised insults to one another. It reminds me in some ways of hip-hop, only much older and more thoughtful and classy.
This mixture of traditional rhythm, metered speech, and tonal variation is a truly unique artform and one that I think it would be very easy to miss completely if you only had a few weeks or a month to spend in the Kingdom.