Thai Buddhist monks are the ultimate slackers of all time.

They drop out of society to join a government-supported temple, don orange robes, and parade the streets once a day begging for food, all to the admiration of a somewhat jealous Thai society, for whose sins they die a little bit each day, not physically but socially. Most Thai males shave their heads and join the brotherhood for at least a temporary period of time. Some Farangs do also, though many more could certainly use it, considering the excesses they put themselves. Cool indeed, but it sends a mixed message to many Thai youths who see it as official vindication for their own slacker tendencies. Most Thais like nothing better than sabai sabai, which translates loosely as ‘fucking off’. The work ethic finds fertile ground only among the business-oriented community, some of them filthy rich, though still far out-numbered by the filthy poor. Of course the average Thai figures that anybody who’s rich simply got lucky and anybody who’s lucky will get rich. Work ethic is a well-guarded secret and admittedly is best utilized by those in an inside position to take full advantage of it. Tang’s teen-age son sees no reason to study beyond the bare minimum necessary to keep moving that desk up to a new level each year. Like many people caught in the gap between fantasy and reality, Thais are lost in their own mythology.eHH