In Search of Paper Clips – Bangkok, Thailand Trip #4

May 7, 2008 at 9:00 am | Posted in itchy backside | 4 Comments
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We already noticed this unusual phenomenon the first time we went to Bangkok almost two and a half years ago. Little did we expect to see it again this time round. I had asked friends who had been to Bangkok if they had ever noticed this, but seemed like everyone else was too engaged in their shop-till-they-drop business in the shopping paradise that they failed to notice something interesting like this.

So what was it that caught Itchyfingers‘ eyes?

Paper clips

What? Paper clips? Weren’t these used for organising thicker stack of papers together? What’s so interesting about these metal paper clips?

Well, that’s what you think as the humble use of these paper clips. In Bangkok, (at least I din see it happening in Chiang Mai) these paper clips are of much bigger importance.

Walking along the streets of busy Bangkok city, you would encounter many students in different school uniforms. However most of these were white tops and black bottoms.

The long pleated skirt with white top, white socks and white shoes

But then there were also many others with tight tops and skirts that were in super small sizes! Some even had a high slit in front. On closer look, we also found that many of the girls had these on…

Three friends each spotting a different skirt – the old fashioned and long
pleated skirt, a low waist tight skirt and another low waist one with a slit –
this one at the back. Look at the shoes! Can suka suka wear any shoes
one leh! Er, what’s with the red circle?

Take a closer look…

Paper clip on the belt!

What was the metal paper clip doing on the girls’ belt? When we first saw it, we thought she might have left it there so that she won’t forget in case she needed it for emergency when she had a whole stack of paper to organise. Er, but hor, if that was the case, surely you could just clip it on your bag right? Then we noticed more of these clips on girls’ belt and only girls had them and not the boys. Wow! Surely not all Thai girls students were that forgetful right?

According to this site, girls must wear two pins that represent which
faculty/department of study they belong to. So I think this should be
one of them. Some of these girls worn shoes that were so casual!

It was only then we realised that the girls must have used the clip to clip the belt and the skirt together to prevent the belt from slipping off. Har?? So troublesome? Why dun they just add some loops for belt on the skirts, just like what the boys’ pants had?  Best thing was, they not only used this kinda metal paper clip, but also those good old wooden cloth pegs our mothers used to secure wet laundry!

Another kinda metal clip being used

Being smart and observant, we also figured out that the girls in super tight tight tight or sexy short skirts must be from tertiary institutions. To prove ourselves right, we even followed the paper clips, er, I mean the girls, to their school the last trip, and BINGO! They were uni students! We were surprised that Thai universities required students to put on uniforms. Well, maybe to rebel against the school regulation and to inject a more fashionable image, these girls chose to dress so sexily. As for the clips, we really couldn’t figure out why a simple long term solution of just making some belt loops wasn’t been done…so we concluded that it could be a case of fashion statement again.. :p If not, why would you see this…?

A Hello Kitty clip on this girl taken from this site

Incidentally during our brekky buffet at the hotel, we saw this paper clip, erhm, this uni girl working in the cafe. She should be just working as a part-timer as she was in her school uniform…and yes! she’s one of the paper clip! Curious for a confirmation on the use of the paper clip, my friend KG approached her with the question. Unfortunately she couldn’t understand English and got to blushingly ask her colleague to translate. Finally we got our answer – yes, the paper clip was used to secure the belt onto the skirt. Not to make her feel more embarrass, we didn’t ask her about why didn’t they just sew some loops on the skirt.

So in our quest for more fashion conscious, paper clip donning universities girls pictures, Itchyfingers had a most fun and frustrating time looking, peeping, tailing and chasing after the girls. It was a case of when you wanted them, they would not appear! When they did appear they didn’t have the paper clips!

No paper clips!

And when we spotted those with paper clips, our almost five years old cameras couldn’t act fast enough even with our itchy fingers! Most of the time we had difficulties trying to focus walking behind them while maintaining a respectable distance so as not to appear like perverts! The worse thing was when we were ready to press the shutter, some passerby would block our view! How we wished we had brought along the SLR camera with zoom lens!

Breaking the school rule a little with a harmless small bear accessory and a paper clip

Itchyfingers tailed this sexy paper clip for the longest distance at a mall

Waiting for our ‘target’ at a bus stop, we finally got this relatively closer view  

We had to call it a day as it was the last day of our trip. Just as we were rushing back to the hotel to pick up our luggage, we saw three girls walking towards us! Immediately we turned over after they walked passed to look for paper clips…Darn! One of them had it! But I had kept my camera! So hastily I took it out but the piece of antique took forever to turn on so I had to open up my steps in order to catch up to take a picture…But the zoom couldn’t reach far enough so I tried to catch up some more to take a closer picture. Then it started to pour! Aiyo! No more chance liao!

My last paper clip shot

Also see related posts:
> Changs Upon – Bangkok, Thailand Trip #3
> Sleepless in Siam – Bangkok, Thailand Trip #2
> Natural Instant Breast Enhancement – Bangkok, Thailand Trip #1
> Grasp the Possibilities – Product Design #1



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  1. check out this post on thai vs japanese uniform. I have also noticed those clips on these thai girls uniform!

  2. I’v been seeing this so long ago, but never question about it.

  3. Are you paparazzi…I just wonder hahaha

    • Haha….we are not called Itchyfingers for nothing… hahah… 😀

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