Trolling on the internet takes many forms. Flaming, and being generally disagreeable, of course, are the most common form of trolling. But where that is considered undesirable behavior at most sites on the ‘net, it’s standard practice on the gay Thailand message boards where nothing furthers the dialogue like a well-placed barb. Even if they do usually come off more like the utterings of an extra in The Boys In The Band than a witty bon mot. Even those few that consider themselves to be boards beyond such ungentlemanly-like conduct thoroughly enjoy the art of flaming. They, however, reserve that right for either the board owner, or for members to use only against those the owner or ruling clique dislike. Indeed, some would argue that flaming, defined as the act of posting or sending offensive messages over the Internet, is the very essence of the gay Thailand message board world.
Detestable, despicable, offensive, and repellent as flaming is generally considered to be elsewhere, a far more loathsome but popular crime on the gay Thailand message boards is being a hydra. It is second in popularity to flaming a member by accusing them of being a hydra. The term Hydra derives from ancient Greek mythology where it was a serpent-like water beast with reptilian traits that possessed many heads – the poets mention more heads than the vase-painters could paint, and for each head cut off it grew two more – and poisonous breath and blood so virulent even its tracks were deadly. As apt as that term may sound, hydra is a term coined and used solely on the gay Thailand message boards. Those who invent multiple personas and register numerous fictitious handles elsewhere are called sock puppets. I suspect whoever first used the term hydra was a hydra himself, preferring the expression that envisions a naked Greek godly hero battling a beast of mythological proportions over one of a smelly, tired, worn, discarded piece of clothing brought back to life by a hand that undoubtedly spends most of its life engaged in the less heroic battle of spanking the monkey.
Be that as it may, the hydra is a hallowed institution on the gay Thailand forums and as such should be honored and treated with respect. Hydras of the past were majestic creations that angered many and brought Smiles to the faces of many more. Who can forget Homitern, a creation so unforgettable that the rumor of his death out-lived the breadth of his fictitious life. Or the less stellar but undeniably effective Combat, a hydra created by Beachlover – who many would consider to be the epitome of being a hydra – to prop up and support the Beach’s frequent flaming attacks on the old and older alike.
Today, unfortunately, the comic-like fictitious hydra characters that populate the boards are a far cry from the majestic trolls that hydras once were. Taking on the persona of a cartoon character – complete with matching avatar – is one of the more popular and idiotic attempts at hydrating these days that raises a flag so false the deception is as easy to spot as a pedo in a playground. You have to wonder why they even bother. Or considering the passions of many, why they don’t instead spend their time on playgrounds.
Hunter S. Thompson gave us the memorable line, “When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.” And no where is that sentiment more applicable than on the gay Thailand message boards. Creating a hydra should not be an endeavor undertaken lightly. It’s a tradition that demands a modicum of effort to created a believable character separate enough from your own persona as to allow you to carry on protracted debate with yourself that does not come off simply as the mutterings of a friendless reprobate stewing in the morass that is his desolate life. In other words, you have to set your hydra above the level of the typical poster on the forums. With that goal in mind, here are some tips on how to be an effective hydra:
Your Character Becomes Your Destiny:
It takes great care and finesse to create a believable hydra. And like with a great wine, your hydra should mature with age. You’ll need to fully map out the characteristics of your hydra (if for no other reason than to keep this one separate from the others you have and will create). Nuances of personality are important. As is a backstory. These details will provide the basis your hydra requires to post years of inflammatory opinions and put-downs in a believable manner. How consistent and credible your hydra appears will determine its longevity.
Not that credibility should be your overarching concern. You may think that like a midget at a urinal you’re going to have to be on your toes, but as suspicious as a lot as the gay Thailand forum members are, the bar has been set so low by real forum members that no matter how outrageous are the peccadillos you come up with for your hydra they will pale in comparison. Consider Bucknaway’s 12-year-old-who-just-discovered-his-dick act as a prime example of a personality that would scream for incarceration at the closest mental-health facility in any other social setting. Or ChristianPFC’s hunt for a marginally acceptable warm, living body to fill his ideal of a perfect pair of underwear. Mark Twain must have been thinking about gay Thailand forum posting regulars when he observed that “Truth is stranger than fiction.” Do not be timid in setting the temperament of your hydra. Larger than life should be your objective or your hydra will have no hope of holding a candle to the eccentricities that pass for the norm on the message boards.
The Devil Is In The Details:
Beachlover as Hydra is without a doubt the prime character study for anyone attempting to create a believable hydra. Even though that persona is his primary one for posting, it is the embodiment of the internet troll and serves well as an example of creating and managing a hydra. The all important details you decide to use should be specific enough to be credible but general enough to prevent being caught out in the fantasies you’ll weave. CDNMatt’s wholehearted belief in Beachball’s authenticity proves the effectiveness of using non-specific but consistent details to flesh out your hydra, though it also makes you wonder if ignorance really is bliss then why isn’t Matt the happiest person in the world.
The Devil Wears Prada:
Style too is an important part of your hydra’s make-up. It should carefully match its backstory, the details of which you will slowly reveal over time. Grammar and word use should be appropriate to the age and ethnicity of your hydra. But don’t over do it. Obvious hydras rely too strongly on slang and ethnocentric grammar usage, a common mistake that is readily evident in the half dozen hydras being managed by a single poster on the Bitch Board. Purposely misspelling words and committing errors of grammar too should be avoided both because it is a ploy easy to spot and because Brithai/Timmberty/Bertyberttimmy/Bert And Ernie whose masterful mangling of the English language is causing LMTU to roll in his grave out of jealousy already holds title to being the ignorant bastard with not enough pride to communicate in something resembling his native language.
Don’t just be rude and obnoxious. To be a valuable member of the hydra community you need to stir emotions through well-crafted derisive remarks. As a gay man you are supposed to be skilled at this art. Aspire to ridicule via the subtle snark. Even those who suspect you are a hydra will cut you slack if your abuse is skillfully applied. Read any of Boo Hoo’s post to see how not to do this.
The right to post boring cut and paste news items that are of no interest and news to no one and then claim they have been emailed to you by a nonexistent friend is a right that is reserved strictly for use by the Lonely Wombat, a man sunk so deep in his personal misery that he radiates broadband resentment. Boring is not an option for a good hydra. The majority of forum posters already rely on the weight of their own thoughts to make them feel like they are not alone. They will despise the reflective nature of your hydra if you claim this trait for your own.
Home Is Where The Heart Is:
Choosing which board or boards you decide to register your hydra to is of utmost importance. Baht Stop, for example, is a board filled with the hydras of a very small handful of members, and a few other folk too stupid to realize it. The quality of hydra there is low and child-like in effort, though in their defense they are dealing with a membership with a child-like mentality. Baht Stop truly is a case of too many freaks, not enough circuses. If you have any pride, you will not sully the reputation of your hydra by posting to this forum of the dipsomaniacal and dispossessed.
At first glance Gay Thailand may seem like a good board for your hydra to call home. The half dozen members of that board welcome new members with open arms, assuming that anyone boring enough to want to join them must share in their cherished state of vacuity. But within a few posts they will turn on you like a pack of rabid dogs intent on eating their young. But they will address you as Khun in the meantime. If you can’t resist planting your hydra on this board, use Khun in your hydra’s name, That will drive them batshit crazy.
The Bitch Board, a multi-headed hydra itself, is a place no self-respecting hydra would allow himself to be seen posting. The hydras there make the hydras on Baht Stop – which of course are in many cases the creations of the same few miserable Pattaya expats – look like comic geniuses. I mean smurf, smurf? Really? Besides, Da Boss’ was a hydra is no longer a hydra but no one was fooled or gives a fuck anyway’s rantings have taken over on that board and it is now nothing more than a commentary on the dangers of retiring to the Sodom and Gomorrah of SE Asia with more money than brains when your mental health is already suffering from years of self-inflicted depravity and abuse.
Cruising Gay Thailand, the new kid on the block that has as much chance at survival as a Mayfly, was conceived by a hydra who barely lasted two full days. Run by a man who has trouble remembering which shoe goes on which foot, it may seem a worthy board for your hydra if for no better reason than the challenge laid down against hydra use by its owner. But that’s like stealing candy from a baby, or buying tainted soup from a Pattaya kitchen. You don’t want to degenerate your hydra’s reputation by having it appear on this forum. You may, however, want to register your hydra’s name on Cruising Gay Thailand to reserve and protect its use, which appears to be crucial to the regular posters on the gay Thailand forums. Because god forbid you wouldn’t want some other fan of the debauchery that passes for a sex life in Sunee to sully your reputation.
Gay Button’s blog on the other hand can be a fun temporary home for your hydra. Jabba The Butt prides himself on his ability to sniff out hydras, but the scent of a cheese danish anywhere within five miles is enough to throw him off his game. Too busy preforming his duties as the Sultan of Sunee, Jabba generally relies on his overbearing and obnoxious nature to drive away hydras – and any other member with an ounce of self-awareness or self-respect – from his blog. Gay Button Thai, however, is a good board to practice with a newly created hydra before taking it to the big time. Where your initial poorly crafted postings might be ignored elsewhere, you know Jabba can not control himself from posting an answer to each and every post made by a member of his merry little band of kiddie lovers. So go for it. Besides, he can use the exercise.
If you are serious about your hydras the only board you should be posting to is the grandfather of all hydra homes, Sawatdee Gay Thailand. This is where the hydra was invented and where the hydras of renown still reside today. A forum filled with wizened oldsters celebrating decades of mutual dislike, anything other than the most carefully crafted hydra will have as much impact as a sparrow’s belch in a typhoon on SGT. This is Broadway to the other board’s regional theater and introducing your hydra to the other hydras on this board requires a deft touch. Being masters of hydradom themselves, they can spot a fake quicker than Scottish-Guy is to get his panties in a wad over misinterpreting a basic compound sentence. But at the same time, as the history of the boards have shown us, they are firm believers and participants in that old adage of fool me once . . .
Your best bet is to let a Smiles be your umbrella. Emulation is, of course, the sincerest form of flatulence. Start slow, engage a simpleton easy to anger, such as Kunt12 by referring to him as Kunt12. Or mentioning Phuket in a favorable light. Then work your way up to AK-47 whose chain is as easy to pull. The amount of time it takes him to carefully craft a multiple-sourced and quoted reply that absolutely no one other than AK-47 will ever bother to read is the exact type of impact you are looking for in using your hydra. With its long history of hydra-use there is some danger in attempting to use anything other than the most skillfully crafted hydra on SGT, but fortunately jinx is the sole moderator these days and is so busy making up for lost time with deletions, thread locks, and moving the offending to some unknown place in outer space he has no time or interest in ferreting out new hydras. Unless it’s a new one of Da Boss’.
The Best Offense Is A Good Defense.
Or maybe that’s the other way around. Doesn’t matter. The nice thing about hydra accusations is none of the board owners or moderators are intelligent enough to actually be able to determine who is and who is not a hydra, a skill that a 12-year-old with a smartphone could easily master. That means everyone is fair game. If your hydra is accused of being a hydra, throw that accusation back in your accuser’s face. And then use another of your hydras to second the motion. If all else fails, you can always create a new hydra to replace the one that suffered an early death.
Practice Makes Perfect:
With new boards and old boards under new ownership, this is the perfect time for you to begin creating a few hydras of your own. That endeavor, however, can be rife with problems, mistakes are easy to make at first, and no one wants to ruin a good hydra with errors committed in its infancy. To that end I will help you to post hydra-like messages on SGT until you have the knack down pat, or my non-hydra handle gets banned from the board, or I get a good laugh out of someone’s efforts. Feel free to log in under my user name, Rush, Yet Again. The password is freehydrause. Please do not edit my signature, but otherwise, have fun, Do me proud. And no worries, I probably have several other identities to post under there anyway.
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