Author Topic: Buying treats may become expensive  (Read 1095 times)

Offline thaiga

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 15960
Buying treats may become expensive
« on: November 27, 2012, 11:12:19 AM »
BANGKOK: -- To discourage people from patronising roadside fried-banana vendors, whose presence is being blamed for traffic jams, Nanglueng Police Station said those caught buying the snacks will be fined Bt500 from today.

This decision was made at a recent meeting of district officials, police and the owners of the six licensed fried-banana stalls in the area. People are urged to take pictures of those seen illicitly buying or selling the snacks and mail it to or Pom Prap District Office's Facebook page. The pictures will be used as evidence so that the offenders can be slapped with a fine.

Owners of licensed stalls must submit a list of authorised vendors, complete with photographs, to the district office.
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.

Offline Roger

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 1615
Re: Buying treats may become expensive
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2012, 02:39:22 AM »
Hells Bells - a couple of weeks ago, I bought what looks like 4 of these very bags while in Bangkok. The banana had been fried in old oil
(I think) and we all thought it was horrible. Dumped it all in the next available bin ! Normally I love fried banana. A 500 baht fine would have been the last straw..... 

Offline thaiga

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 15960
Re: Buying treats may become expensive
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2012, 01:32:19 PM »

 those caught buying the snacks will be fined Bt500 from today.

 So the offence is buying the snacks not causing a traffic congestion. where ever there is a vendor
 selling goods people just park in the middle of the road anyway. we all know that. but do they really
 think people are going to send them photographs. and this will solve traffic problems.

 just when you thought you heard it all, there's another round the corner. a laughing stock i'm sure.

Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.

Offline Baby Farts

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 3338
  • Seeek!
Re: Buying treats may become expensive
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2012, 01:53:14 PM »
What about the vendors selling those flower necklaces things?  I see more of them than the banana vendors.

Offline thaiga

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 15960
Re: Buying treats may become expensive
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2012, 02:06:16 PM »
 Theres loads of bannana benders vendors in walking street they only get 100 bht fine         

Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.

Offline thaiga

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 15960
Re: Going bananas over bananas
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2012, 12:20:31 PM »
Great news, people! The long-awaited solution to our eternal traffic woes is finally here! Authorities in Pom Prap Sattru Phai district of Bangkok finally got serious earlier this week, and have cracked down on what they believe to be the cause of massive congestion in the area.

The culprit? Fried banana vendors!

That's right, these good-for-nothing sellers of the yellow phallic devil are being blamed for contributing to gridlocked streets in PPSP district by taking up space in traffic lanes. And for valid reason too! Everyone knows that the sight of fried bananas makes motorists reflexively stop, drool and completely lose the ability to press their foot down on the accelerator.

Oh wait, I made that up. I'm actually not quite sure how officials came up with this plan. Perhaps it was something like, "Hey, you know how this city suffers from ridiculous traffic? And you know how we've never been able to find a way to ease the congestion? Well, BANANAS! BANANAS! The answer has been right in front of us all along!"

Let's dissect the logic (or lack thereof) behind this: Apparently the fried bananas that are sold on the street in PPSP district are darn delicious. Fair enough. But it's also illegal for the vendors to approach cars on the road and peddle their goods. Fair enough.

Authorities say that traffic is horrible because tons of cars are stopping to buy the bananas. In true farcical crackdown form, police have asked people to take pictures of those seen unlawfully buying/selling the snacks and mailing the images to or posting them on Pom Prap District Office's Facebook page. Those who are spotted selling could be fined B2,000, while those who are caught buying may be fined B500.

If you're only just skimming this article at this point, you could be forgiven for forgetting what I'm writing about and think this measure is being taken to combat something super dangerous, like weapons or drugs. But let me remind you again... some peepz actually sat down and came up with a plan to take down fried bananas! Perhaps it's now considered the ya baa of the snack world!

What exactly is expected to happen with this strategy? It sounds almost as archaic as the Hotmail address that PPSP district uses. Are Good Samaritans supposed to perform their civic duty and photograph people in the satanic act of banana transactions? Then what? Police will begin a massive hunt to track down the fruity criminals to fine them? Then if all goes well, traffic will cease to exist?

While the intentions of this plan are somewhat OK, it's completely misguided as usual.

Yes, illegal roadside vendors are a problem in PPSP district and beyond. Yes, they are annoying when they approach your car, whether it's to sell bananas, garlands, or goldfish in inflated plastic bags. But isn't it more reasonable to say that vendors come out because cars are stuck in traffic, not because they want to cause traffic? If anything, that's a smart business plan on their part!

Plus, when the light turns green, the vendors scurry off anyway for fear of being run over by a maniacal speeding driver.

Instead of finding solutions for problems that don't really exist (fried bananas leading to traffic), wouldn't it make more sense to tackle things that are more likely to contribute to congestion - mismanaged traffic lights, lack of communication between control stations, horrible drivers, police falling asleep on the job...

Cracking down on fried banana sellers because they are illegal is reasonable. But taking them away because they supposedly hold up road flow is ridiculous and will do nothing to combat traffic. If anything, we should let them keep selling their bananas because who knows how bad road rage could get if drivers are sitting in their cars cranky and hungry.

Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.

Offline thaiga

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 15960
Re: Peeling away bangkok's traffic woes
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2012, 12:13:21 PM »
The declaration that fried banana sellers were to blame for the gridlock left one wondering whether those in charge are proposing earnest solutions or merely monkeying around

Never have fried bananas posed such a threat as they did last week in the Land of Smiles

the Pom Prap cops had their hands full, stamping out a scourge they claim causes Bangkok's infamous traffic jams.

This story begins on an inner-city street not far from the Nang Loeng market.

Like most of Bangkok, Nakhon Sawan Road is gridlocked day and night. I have read entire chapters of Crime and Punishment waiting for the lights to change at the T-junction where Nakhon Sawan meets Phitsanulok.

In fact I can get through almost half a Dostoyevsky from Nakhon Sawan through to Phetchaburi, a route I take as rarely as I read a Dostoyevsky since both to me are way too slow and circuitous, leaving me feeling drained and depressed.

Why is Bangkok so jammed? Too many cars on too few streets and inadequate mass transit. Those poor police officers who control traffic lights aren't a great help either.

We need to seek out that learned professor at the police academy who has been instructing generations of traffic cops that leaving lights red for nine minutes at a time is effective traffic management. We must wai him, bind and gag him, then leave him forever in a forgotten basement somewhere in aforesaid academy.

Back in the mid 1990s, one traffic cop at the Ratchadaphisek intersection went crazy from the traffic.

Claiming to see the ghost of a former king, he turned the lights green on all four sides, then danced traditional Thai style in the middle of the intersection.

You couldn't help but feel a little sorry for the guy, and for a while his example served as a microcosm for all that is wrong with this city.

The solutions have been as countless as they have been fruitless. One police chief decided massive coloured helium-filled balloons would help alleviate things.

When the traffic was jammed, a red balloon would be raised. When it was good, a green balloon would go up. I don't know where that long-since-retired police chief is now, but I bet he's living somewhere near a circus.

There was the other chief who, in his very first interview upon assuming office, claimed Bangkok's traffic problem was ''incurable'' and thus he wouldn't even bother to try to fix it.

I like a man of conviction, but boy did we count down the days till that guy retired.

Politicians have tried. One announced he would solve Bangkok's traffic ''within six months''. He didn't, thus setting off a chain of events that ended in him fleeing the country.

In summary; we've heard it all. We've heard of schemes and tricks and methods to alleviate Bangkok's traffic woes to the point where we have now run out of excuses. Until this week, nobody thought to put it down to fried bananas.

It's been claimed fried banana vendors hold up traffic on Nakhon Sawan Road and it has a spiralling effect. If we could outlaw these fried banana vendors, then peace would return to the Bangkok streets (spoken as if there was peace in the first place).

I wonder if you are familiar with the Thai dessert called kluai khaek. A direct translation would be Indian bananas, since that's where they originally come from.

You take a banana and coat it with enough thick batter to feed an Ethiopian family for a week. Then you toss it into a tub of hot palm oil, where it bubbles and crisps over.

The banana doubles in size, which is what happens to you, too, when fried bananas are eaten on a regular basis.

Bite into one of these things and sickly-sweet palm oil glistens on your lips. Globules of grease run down your chin, dropping into your lap thus providing your trousers with an embarrassing stain for the rest of the day.

Disgusting, but what a taste sensation! Honestly, if only Karen Carpenter had come into contact with this Thai dessert she'd be putting out albums to this day. I can't touch the stuff; I see Jenny Craig's face smiling up at me every time I look down into a bag of them.

A vendor at the Nang Loeng market made exquisite fried bananas. One day, she casually glanced up from her bubbling vat of palm oil and noticed the terrible traffic in front of the market.

Why not sell to this captive audience? And so a fried banana seller flitted in and out of the cars, selling bags to famished motorists.

Thais are extremely innovative, while at the same time incredibly good copyists. In no time another fried banana vendor set up shop at the Nang Loeng market, dispatching staff to run in between the stationary motorists. And another. Then another.

How many is that _ four? By the time 2012 came around there were six fried banana vendors with their multitudes of sales staff wending their ways through the Nakhon Sawan Road traffic! It was a bizarre sight; on a stretch of road not more than 100m and nowhere else, dozens of fried banana vendors buzzing around the cars.

It is here we must welcome, from stage left, the Pom Prap police. They're not real police per se, but what we call jaonahtee tetsakij or ''sanitary officers'', a bit like school monitors hired by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration.

They dress like police, blow whistles like police, and even take bribes like police, as any Westerner who has thrown down a cigarette butt in front of the Emporium can attest.

There aren't many tourists around Pom Prap to fleece, so their attention turned to fried banana vendors, but curtailing them was a task bigger than the BMA. They contacted the real police, that is Nang Loeng police station.

From now on, it was announced late last month, anybody who sold fried bananas on the street would be fined 2,000 baht. Anybody purchasing them would be fined 500 baht. In that way the government would make money and Bangkok's traffic woes would quickly vanish.

Signs went up. We were obliged to announce the crackdown on air. Meanwhile, the cops swooped on the vendors, making sure they were properly registered as businesses (the only market vendors, no doubt, in the whole of Bangkok now registered as such). The vendors nodded their heads vigorously and promised to cooperate.

The faux police even set up a Facebook page, along with an email address one could write to in the event one spotted an errant fried banana vendor on the street.

Cops shook hands with vendors. Everybody went home. And that is where the problem lay.

Last Saturday and Sunday, days one and two of the crackdown, nobody was out monitoring the fiendish fried banana boys and girls. It appears the weekend is even a rest time for those faux police. With the coast clear, the vendors went back on the streets with vigour, darting in between the cars and the SALE OF FRIED BANANAS PROHIBITED signs.

Two days into the clampdown and not a soul had been arrested. The only things brisk during those days were condemnation of the entire campaign _ and fried banana sales.

By midweek it was clear the crackdown had been an unmitigated failure.

By coincidence I happened to be stuck in traffic at the Nang Loeng intersection this week.

There they were, the fried banana sellers, still racing through traffic, big smirks on their faces.

We shall never know if indeed fried bananas are the real reason our roads are jammed. It was a theory never tested. We can only wait till the next great idea comes along. Som tam, perhaps?
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.

Offline thaiga

  • Korat forum specialist
  • *****
  • Posts: 15960
Re: Fried-Banana sellers just won't split
« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2013, 03:31:55 PM »
The streets around Lan Luang intersection bustle with traffic and hawkers who continue to sell their wares on the street, despite police efforts to enforce the law prohibiting them

It's been going on for at least a decade and is illegal and risky, but there's almost nothing police can do to stop the fried-banana sellers zigzagging through traffic on Lan Luang Road in the old Dusit area of Bangkok.

THANKS A BUNCH: Deep-fried bananas are being sold within sight of the police booth on Nang Loeng intersection, even though their sale on the street is prohibited.

The pesky banana sellers are now a feature of Nang Loeng, where they strategically line the gaps between lanes and sell their tasty treats _ 20 baht for three battered bananas sliced in half _ to appreciative motorists. They almost always sell out of the bananas, openly hopping and weaving through traffic in front of a police booth.

Pol Lt Col Preecha Niamsuphap, Deputy Superintendent of Nang Loeng Traffic Police, admits law enforcement is problematic.

"There is suppression routinely," he said. "But police numbers nowadays are not enough to keep an eye on the banana sellers. They can't be stationed on every corner of the area where they sell them."

The popularity of the sugary snack has become so well known that Lan Lunag Road is also called Kluay Khaek (Indian banana) Road. Starting as a small family business in the mid-1960s, the number of kluay khaek vendors has grown along with the popularity of the dish, which is proudly claimed to have originated in Thailand, although the name suggests otherwise.

"You really have to try it for yourself; it's delicious," said one regular customer. "The flavours are so nuanced and varied."

The banana sellers nowadays roam the streets from Lan Luang intersection to Chakkraphatdiphong Road and the Man Sri intersection. They are employed by small banana shops and stalls that produce nothing but battered bananas wrapped in newspaper for sale. The Bangkok Post is reputed to be the best wrapping because of the high paper quality.

In 2007, Pomprap Sattruphai district erected signs along the roads threatening to fine sellers and customers, but to no avail. District officials argued that buying a bag of bananas caused traffic jams and hazardous traffic conditions.

Pol Lt Col Preecha said not only are the sellers breaching traffic laws, but also the 1992 Cleanliness and Tidiness of the Country Act. The sellers face a maximum fine of 2,000 baht and the customers 500 baht.

Both are equally guilty in Pol Lt Col Preecha's eyes.

"The fried-banana sellers will stop going in the middle of the street as soon as the buyers stop buying from them," said the policeman. "You can legally park your car nearby and buy them. It's safer for the sellers, buyers and other drivers on the same street."

Pol Lt Col Preecha boasts that law enforcement is strict, with 30-40 sellers arrested every month on average. However, the vendors disagree.

On one side of Lan Luang Road there are seven neighbouring fried banana shops where the street sellers distinguish themselves by aprons coloured red, white, blue, purple, grey, pink and green.

"There're no more laws like this," said one of the vendors when asked about enforcement. "It's more flexible now. The law has compromised for us."

One of the shop owners who claims to have been in business since the 1960s said they had an informal agreement with police to allow the street selling to continue.

"We have tags numbered one to three given to us by police," he said. "That means we have a maximum of three staff who are allowed to sell our product to our customers on the street."

Pol Lt Col Preecha denied there was any compromise for vendors who break the law.

He said it was difficult to control the street sellers as the problem encroached on various agencies and departments including Nang Loeng Traffic Police, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration's Environment Department, Dusit District Office and municipal officials.

He said they had had many meetings with the various bodies and the vendors where agreement was reached, but soon forgotten.

"We warn them about the punishment from each department but they deny they have made an agreement," Pol Lt Col Preecha said.

"They negotiated for less strict law enforcement and claimed that the staff who they hire to walk on the street are young people from the local community who they give jobs. We keep arresting those who sell their products on the street as the talks have not accomplished what they set out to do."

The shop owner who said he had been granted approval for three street sellers said many of his competitors were greedy.

"We do not sell a lot each day," he said. "We just sell enough to live on, and it is sufficient for us. Many shops here want to sell as much as possible. They hire loads of staff to wander around the area, including in the traffic."

He says when they are arrested they pay a fine of a few hundred baht and are straight back on the street.

"I agree with the authorities and wish to see serious law enforcement," he said. "We are all in the same business. One rotten apple doesn't spoil the whole bunch."  bangkokpost

Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.

Offline Al

  • Korat forum reporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 282
Re: Buying treats may become expensive
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2013, 04:21:35 PM »
Wow, as a fried banana aficionado, I need to check this place out.