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A Huge Pile of Gorgeous Old Thai Movie Posters Great Posters Sweet Movies and Wild Books 

A Huge Pile of Gorgeous Old Thai Movie Posters

It was the Singapore Agent who told me about the poster guy on Rambuttri. “Rambuttri like Rambutan,” he said. “But with a tree at the end. Look for the restaurant with the good pad thai, next to the massage place. That’s where you’ll find the poster guy.” The pad thai restaurant next to a massage parlor? In Bangkok, this means nothing at all — on the restaurant-and-massage-filled Thanon Rambutri, doubly-so. But it made for a treasure hunt. And, as you know, I LOVE treasure hunts. [If I had taken a…

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Bangkok’s Sweetest Secret Dance Party Cute & Kawaii 

Bangkok’s Sweetest Secret Dance Party

Bangkok is awesome. Pad thai, ping pong balls, reclining buddhas. But nowhere is sweeter than this hidden corridor of Central World Mall, where crowds of high school kids practice their sweet dance moves every weekend. Each gang brings their own routines and own MP3 players. Any reflective surface–shop windows, aluminum panelling, fire extinguisher cabinetry–stands in for a mirror. And the moves? OMG. It’s pure coordinated secret wonderfulness. Justin Bieber, eat your heart out.

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Mad Costumes Across Asia Our Weird Projects Strange Tourism 

Mad Costumes Across Asia

As regular readers know, we at AsiaObscura love costumes. We’ve captured some incredible cosplay adventures here, here, here, here and even here. But it goes deeper. Almost every tourist hotspot across north-east Asia has a rack of costumes, a dramatic backdrop or two, and a whole boatload of awesomeness to dive into. All your dreams can come true, in Asia. Terra Cotta Warriors, Xi’an Egyptians, Shenzhen Winter Egyptians, Beijing Guards of Mianshan Daoist Retreat Cultural Revolution-era Mao and Lin Biao, Shenzhen Gangsters of Old Shanghai, Shanghai Stewardess and Captain of…

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One Politician You Can Count On Other Obscura 

One Politician You Can Count On

We haven’t set foot in Bangkok in far too long. Months. But fortunately, AsiaObscura eyes are growing more populous, and reader Matt Smith wrote in with this great pair of electoral campaign posters. What a smile! What a dog! (Pity about that shit kid he had to deal with.) You can surely find more Obscurata in Matt’s Thai Diary, from Amazon. Jim S., one of our favorite resources for Chinese and Thai scoops, writes that the poster translates to “When you need honesty”. He continued that, “Chuvit is not a…

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The Illegal Mae Sot-Burma Border Crossing Other Obscura 

The Illegal Mae Sot-Burma Border Crossing

I put this up on YouTube a little while back, but it’s definitely worth putting up here: the illegal border crossing at Mae Sot. I shot this from the Thai side of the Thai-Burmese border. To get from Mae Sot to Myawaddy, you cross a bridge, pay a toll, and have your passport confiscated for a few hours. (If you’re me, that is.) Or, if you’re Burmese, you could pay a fellow with a fat innertube a few pennies, and be waded across under the bridge. Literally, in the shadow…

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The Story of (These Creepily Awesome) Big Head Buddhas, with video Historical Wonders Holy Curiosities 

The Story of (These Creepily Awesome) Big Head Buddhas, with video

Michelle’s spent a slew of Chinese New Years here in Beijing, but she’s never seen these before — 大头娃娃 (Dàtóu wáwá or Dai Tao Fut) — incredible paper mache masks that we found in the back of a junk store, in Bangkok’s Chinatown.  In English, they’re called Big Headed Buddhas, and for just a few dollars each, how could we resist picking them up!?!

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Strange Moments in a Bangkok Temple Holy Curiosities Somewhat Perverted 

Strange Moments in a Bangkok Temple

Wat Suwannaram, a 12th-century temple, is hidden on the far side of the river in Bangkok. It’s remote — no tourists, only two praying women in short skirts (they’d left their high heels outside.) The real draw here is the mouth-dropping murals, which tell the most bizarre and glorious tales. While we tiptoed around, a couple of masked women carefully touched up the murals, many of which were fading and cracked. An old hag gets waylaid:

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The Weirdest Temple in Chiang Rai Holy Curiosities 

The Weirdest Temple in Chiang Rai

An insane Thai artist, who resides somewhere between Henry Darger and Moebius the Frenchman, realized he needed to return to his hometown, Chiang Rai, and build a temple. Not just any Wat — it had to be something bigger, something bolder, something more… white. It was to be the most renowned tribute to the Buddha, yet. It was to deliver him students and followers, and scores- nay, millions- of tourists a year. It was to put Chiang Rai back on the map. And it did. Bouncing along dirt roads in…

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