Where are you going this weekend? And who are you going with?
Whether it’s a tasting menu with an old school friend, or drinks with that random girl who keeps liking your Facebook posts, there’s no denying that Bangkok boasts its fair share of creatures and characters.
We’re a friendly bunch, for the most part, and while dating is admittedly a tough pickle in the city, finding friends isn’t so big a challenge. If you go to crossfit, you’re already halfway there. If you go out to cocktail bars, you’ll rub shoulders very easily. And if you grew up here, then you’ll always have those childhood neighbours to fall back on.
Here, we’ve put together a list of some of the most common types of friends we’ve noticed a lot of Bangkokians may have. Obviously, this doesn’t apply to everyone, and obviously we are poking holes and fun at the whole spiel. Nevertheless, we have a feeling you’ll be nodding along to several of these, and probably encounter them this weekend, too.
It takes one to know one — see you at brunch.
[Hero Image Credit: Joel Bengs/Unsplash]
The restaurant hopper
This friend is on it. He or she knows about all the hottest new restaurant openings, follows a bunch of Bangkok chefs on Instagram, and is on a first name basis with most of the restaurant managers about town. Curious about food and always thinking about the next meal, here’s a friend that is never not willing to try new things, and will probably drag you to a pop-up or seven whenever he/she gets the chance.
Most likely to: let the food go cold because they still didn’t get the best ‘gram
Least likely to: try intermittent fasting
Great to have because: they’ll never reply with “ you choose” when you need to decide where to go
Granted, the tribe consists of more than one friend, but they’re all pretty similar. The tribe refers to that group of friends (or rather, acquaintances) that you only really speak to at the gym or at the smoothie bar after the gym. You support each other, you motivate each other, and you compliment one another on your quads and squats or whatever. It’s not a deep friendship, but it’s there when you’re about to pass out from the burn of another circuit session at Base.
Most likely to: make activewear look attractive
Least likely to: not be a morning person
Great to have because: you don’t have to feel so alone or intimidated at the gym
The coffee mate
This is perhaps our local version of water cooler talk. We all have that friend at the office that enjoys a street side iced tea or iced coffee. Sometimes you go to buy this beverage together so you can gossip about your co-workers in a safe space; other times you just want an excuse to not answer your emails. Whatever the reason, this person is like your work wife, and you’re sad whenever they take vacation leave.
Most likely to: get mad when you buy a beverage without them
Least likely to: actually go for lunch with you
Great to have because: sometimes you just need to have a heart-to-heart at work
The one you only see in clubs
There are friends we make at clubs, and then there are friends we only meet at clubs. A lot of the time, we don’t even know what these friends do during the day, but we definitely know what they get up to at night. This is that ‘woo!’ friend you have, and that friend you can always hit up with a late night text. Bored on a Friday night? Catch drinks with this person. They get dressed faster than you can say “two Ramos Fizz’ please” and they’re not scared of meeting new people (strangers), either.
Most likely to: appear on a regrettable Instagram story you’ll cringe about the next morning
Least likely to: have breakfast, go on a 3-hour bus ride out of town, or accompany you to the immigration office
Great to have because: they’re really fun
Bangkok is a city buzzing with creatives, and it’s likely an artist or two has penetrated your friend circle. The artist will criticise our use of ‘penetrate’ in the previous sentence. They dress really well, in a boho chic way, but don’t want you to call it that. The artist doesn’t even have to be an artist. They could be an activist. They could be a teacher by day. They could own a coffeeshop. They could be anything, man. They’re just really, really, unattainably cool.
Most likely to: say something you’ll never forget
Least likely to: take a picture of you for you
Great to have because: they’ll call you out when you’re being over the top. Or they’ll just join you over that top
The one that has a kid
This friend is your ‘mature’ friend, though they try hard to prove to you that they’ve ‘still got it.’ And maybe they do. They’re a cool Mum/Dad, and they still like to go out and party. They exemplify the friend who grew up really fast and seemingly has it together — though after a few G&Ts you realise that they’re only human. They certainly don’t have it any more together than you do.
Most likely to: want to really let loose
Least likely to: lecture you about your life choices
Great to have because: they prove that basically anyone can be a parent
The one you’ve known since you were kids
This type of friend often gets classified as boring or unexciting, but they are real gems, and when things get hard, they’re real diamonds in the rough. They really understand you. They know you better than you know yourself, even if you haven’t spoken in years. You often don’t give them the limelight, though you will drop them the occasional #throwbackphoto on their birthday. You can always count on this friend. They’re practically family.
Most likely to: be the son/daughter your parents wish they had
Least likely to: approve of your current weirdo boyfriend/girlfriend
Great to have because: you don’t have to explain yourself to them, and they’ll always be there when it really matters
The designated driver
Whilst a lot of Bangkokians use Grab, a lot of Bangkokians also like to drive. If they like to drive, they probably have a nice car to show off, too. With a curated playlist plugged in and some sort of air freshener, this is the friend that likes to drive everywhere. You don’t mind being stuck in traffic with them, and they always drop you home. Granted, sometimes you crave the sweet embrace of the PM 2.5 on the back of a Grab Bike (especially in traffic), but they drive you because they love you. Also, road trips are a lot more fun with these guys.
Most likely to: know all the lyrics to the current hits
Least likely to: actually complain too much about traffic
Great to have because: they always have a change of clothes with them
You met when you both reached for the same secondhand book at Jatujak one weekend, and couldn’t stop speaking ever since. You both have the same sticker on the back of your phone and your ex lover’s sister’s mother is a mutual friend. You choked on a piece of otoro once and they caught the piece across the omakase counter. Whatever the reason, you came across this friend very randomly, and your circles don’t mix at all. Nevertheless, you still get along (because this is Bangkok), and you still have a great friendship (because this is Bangkok).
Most likely to: know a wild secret none of your other friends know about
Least likely to: actually know what you do for a living
Great to have because: they’ll never judge you
When all else fails.
Most likely to: read your mood like a book.
Least likely to: be mad at you, like, ever.
Great to have because: they’re your actual, real, best friend, forever.