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  1. #1
    Terminator's Avatar
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    Highway policemen in Thailand now wearing smiley face masks "to lift the mood of motorists"





    BANGKOK: It is the latest version of the famous Thai smile - motorcycle policemen with a bright red goofy grin painted onto their white anti-pollution masks.
    For the first week of the year - and longer if people seem to be smiling back - highway policemen in Thailand will wear the masks "to lift the mood of motorists," according to police officials.
    "For our highway policemen, we have the policy that the police must be friendly and smiling all the time, but the problem is, when we're tired, it's hard to keep smiling," said Colonel Somyos Promnim, the Highway Police commander.
    It has been a rough year in Thailand, with revolving governments, restless mobs and a weeklong takeover of Bangkok's airports that frightened away tourists from the country that keeps on calling itself "The Land of Smiles."
    "They have to put on a mask because a smile doesn't come naturally anymore," said Ammar Siamwalla, an economist who keeps a close eye on the mores of his countrymen. "Normally people smile. You don't have to put on a smiley mask.
    "But these past few years that smile has worn thin because we are all angry at each other and willing to show it."
    It is a complicated thing, the Thai smile, as varied, nuanced and eloquent as the bow in Japan, and apparently requiring just as many muscles.
    Foreign visitors are charmed, but the truth is, it can often be as difficult to know what is behind the Thai smile as it is to guess the real expression of a police officer hiding behind a smiley mask.
    Happiness or sadness, regret or anticipation, triumph or embarrassment, warmth or wickedness, the important thing - and apparently sometimes the hardest thing nowadays - is just to keep on smiling.
    Earlier this month a leading polling agency, Abac, spent three days questioning 2,079 people in the Bangkok area and found that on a scale of 1 to 10, people gave Thailand only 5.77 points for being the Land of Smiles.
    "People forget to smile, you know," said Kritika Kongsompong, a professor of business who for a year was Thailand's public curmudgeon as the grim host of the television import The Weakest Link.
    "I think with better training we can do a better job," she said, noting that one customer service company had given its employees mirrors in which to practice their smiles. "Training should always be one of the top categories for anybody."
    In dour Singapore, where social engineering is often attempted by fiat, people walked around smiling for a while a few years back in response to a campaign called Smile Singapore.
    In Japan, where people can sometimes get carried away by the seriousness of life, workers have been trained to hold a chopstick in their teeth to produce the living equivalent of a smiling emoticon.
    Now Thailand is attempting to live up once again to what might be a national motto, by way of the musical "Bye Bye Birdie" - "Just put on a happy face! Put on a happy face. Put on a happy face."
    Starting out his new administration, the already embattled prime minister, Abhisit Vejjajiva - the fourth prime minister this year - made a promise to his people this month: "I will prove that once again Thailand can be the land of the free, the land of opportunities, and the land of smiles."
    The highway police seem to be as good a place to start as any.
    The new cloth masks, which hook behind the ears and cover the mouth and nose, will help "reduce the stress from drivers when they see the police," said Somyos, the Highway Police commander.
    To that end, he said, some 200 police booths would also distribute holy water, chewing gum and mints.
    He defended his force when asked why drivers needed smiley masks and gum and holy water to calm down when approached by a patrolman.
    "The police are not that scary," he said. "When I was in the United States, their highway police seemed to be more fierce than Thai police. I was scared of them."

  2. #2
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    Ok creepy as hell.
    Thereís a promise I need you to make
    While Iím gone you take care of the love
    And Iíll deal with the hate.

    Donít worry about me; Iíll be all right
    Just care for your children and sleep tight
    Iíll keep you safe on my watch tonight
    ~
    On My Watch Tonight - Mike Corrado

  3. #3
    SPD's Avatar
    SPD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Autumn2009 View Post
    Ok creepy as hell.
    No kidding. Next they'll be wearing clown masks to creep people out!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terminator View Post
    Earlier this month a leading polling agency, Abac, spent three days questioning 2,079 people in the Bangkok area and found that on a scale of 1 to 10, people gave Thailand only 5.77 points for being the Land of Smiles.
    I think Thailand has bigger things to worry about.
    Thereís a promise I need you to make
    While Iím gone you take care of the love
    And Iíll deal with the hate.

    Donít worry about me; Iíll be all right
    Just care for your children and sleep tight
    Iíll keep you safe on my watch tonight
    ~
    On My Watch Tonight - Mike Corrado

  5. #5
    Odd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SPD View Post
    No kidding. Next they'll be wearing clown masks to creep people out!
    These Polish masks would be worth a try.


  6. #6
    10-42Adam's Avatar
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    Very strange.
    Calm Like A Bomb...

    ďA pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. An optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.Ē
    -Winston Churchill

  7. #7
    CTR man's Avatar
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    Why don't they just wear these Hello Kitty face masks and call it a day.



    Choose The Right. When you're doing whats right, then you have nothing to worry about.

    Not a LEO

    In memory of Sgt. Howard K. Stevenson 1965 - 2005. Ceres Police Dept.
    In memory of Robert N. Panos 1955 - 2008 Ceres Police Dept.









  8. #8
    Five-0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SPD View Post
    No kidding. Next they'll be wearing clown masks to creep people out!

    Screw you and your damn clowns. I f'ing hate clowns because of one movie. Pennywise sends his love:

    YouTube - Steven Kings IT clown clips

    Meanwhile, fishing in Russia:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkzV5AIK8iM
    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -- Frederic Bastiat

    "Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter." Ernest Hemingway

    The opinions given in my signatures & threads DO NOT reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only, thereby releasing my agency of any liability, or involvement in anything posted under the username "Five-0" on Officerresource.com

 

 

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