The movie V for Vendetta made the stylized face of Guy Fawkes an international symbol of resistance embraced by hackers and anti-government protesters globally. After the hacking of the Office of the Prime Minister’s website, the mask went viral here, too, first on social media, then on the streets. On May 31, BK spoke to Wuttipat Krasaesinth, 44, who was protesting with a group of some 50 people protesting against the government on Silom Road.

Why are you here today?
To show that there are some people who are upset about this government, which is led by an incompetent prime minister. There is corruption, injustice and they take advantage of good people. Our ultimate objective is to have the Thai parliament replaced.
Is the mask because you’re afraid of people knowing who you are?
I’m not afraid of anything. My name is Wuttipat Krasaesinth, the same name as my Facebook account. I am a Bangkokian, a Thai, and I work in a car firm.  
Why use the Guy Fawkes mask?
It’s a universal symbol of the fight against autocrats and those in power who oppress their citizens. There was a movie called V for Vendetta that came out years ago. According to the movie, Fawkes was a freedom fighter who was tired of the government as it oppressed farmers, laborers and citizens. So he put on the mask and protested against the government. The parliament in that movie was similar to ours right now. The ‘V-mask’ is a global symbol now. If the governments of the world governed fairly, there would be no protests. This gathering is meant to tell the world that our government is unable to govern.

Are you a Yellow Shirt? Who makes up your group?
Me, yes. Previously, some of us were yellow shirts, multi-colored shirts, and some also Democratic Party supporters. We come from numerous groups but we have the same goal, to overthrow this government.
What makes you different from other protesters?
We just try to express our opinions about society peacefully. We are not hooligans. We are employed—actually, everyone here has a pretty high salary. All of the masks, we bought ourselves. No one paid us to be here. We don’t tap into the city’s electricity. We don’t block roads. We don’t set anything on fire. We’re here to wake Bankokians up from the spell that they’re under, without any violence.
Are there no other means of expression for you?
Not really. The mass media is too scared to criticize the government or red shirts so they don’t give us coverage. Facebook is easy to access from anywhere in the country. But if you change your profile picture to the V-mask, you’ll be blocked for two days. This happened to some people here.


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How does the critically acclaimed HTC’s new flagship measure up to more commercially successful smartphones?


(+) The bold modern design, highlighting the aluminum and polycarbonate materials, stands out from other smartphones on the market.    
(+)The improved lithium-polymer battery lasts almost 12 hours.
(+) Awesome speakers thanks to its Beats Audio sound system with a powerful front amplifier, the HTC Boomsound system.


(-) HTC’s interface is quite difficult to use, even for current Android users. Buttons are placed differently from major Android phones (Samsung, LG).
(-) With Qualcomm® Snapdragon 600™ quad-core processor, we’d expect a faster processing speed.
(-)We were excited about HTS’s new Ultrapixel camera technology, but the results are underwhelming.
(-) No additional microSD card.

Verdict: You want an Android phone with awesome sound system? This is for you. Otherwise, you might want to wait for the price to drop.

B21,900. 4.1-inch Full HD screen, 4MP Ultrapixels main camera with 2.1 MP front camera,


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We put six cosmetic primers to the test to see which will keep your face matte and flawless longer.

1.) Laura Mercier: foundation primer-oil free

Price: B1,590
The claim: Oil controlling ingredients ensure long wear and easy application. Meant to be used prior to foundation, creating an invisible layer that acts as a buffer to outside elements.
We feel: The foundation lasts about six hours after using a dab of powder, giving a flawless look. It makes the skin feel smoother, but doesn’t minimize pores and smells rather plasticy.
Verdict: Almost there! Do away with the smell and Laura Mercier is a very solid option.

2.) Nars: make up primer

Price: B1,250
The claim: Protects the skin from UV rays and helps prevent premature signs of aging.
We feel: Due to its runny formula, it’s very easy to apply to your face. Also, it doubles as SPF30 sunscreen. However, it left our skin feeling oily and totally unnatural. It doesn’t keep our makeup on long enough nor does it make applying foundation any smoother.
Verdict: Greasy and grey, better to stay away.

3.) Benefit: the Porefessional (Runner Up!)

Price: B1,150
The claim: The balm will minimize pores and brighten your skin.
We feel: We can’t feel it after application, its silky smooth and light texture feels so natural. Rather than a foundation, it’s more like a base that brightens your skin. Although it does not help hide pores, it does help your makeup last much longer.
Verdict: We really like the light texture; still it could cover our pores better.

4.) Clinique: Pore Refining Solutions Instant Profector (BK pick!)

Price: B1,050
The claim: Allergy tested, 100% fragrance free.
We feel: The scent is actually not the nicest, but the chiffon texture means it easy to apply. It really does make your makeup last all day, so reapplication is unnecessary. It doesn’t brighten or smoothen your skin, though.
Verdict:  Easy to apply, it makes your makeup last much longer—and that’s exactly what it’s meant to do.

5.) MAC: Prep+Primer Skim Base Visage

Price: B1,200
The claim: An ultra-fluid lotion with special-effect silicones. Calms and soothes the skin, blots away excess oil, and evens out skin redness. Improves the laydown and application of foundation.
We feel: While this formula contains some shimmer, those who love the almost-matte look are likely to love it, as it doesn’t make your face look too dewy or shiny. It does help your makeup stay in place longer, but isn’t so hot when it comes to oil control. Most suitable for dry skin.
Verdict: The cream is just too thick and isn’t very effective when it comes to an oily face.

6.) Too Faced: Prime and Poreless skin smoothing face primer

Price: B1,350
The claim: Suited as a base for powders, bronzers and for smoother, flawless skin.
We feel: As with all Too Faced products, Primed and Poreless comes in cute, feminine packaging. This primer creates a nice base for your makeup: your face looks brighter and it enhances your foundation. But it has no coverage whatsoever on pores, nor does it help your makeup stay in place longer. It makes your face look oily within a few hours of applying.
Verdict: The melted-face effect is not appealing.  


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From composing lonesome pop songs using GarageBand software, Chotika (Toon) Kamwongpin, 24, is fast making a name for herself as Stoondio. Her song, “Untitled 001” recently raced up the Fat Radio charts after being shared on social networks. She talks to BK about breaking out of the bedroom.

How did you become Stoondio?
Composing songs has been my favorite hobby since I was in high school. Luckily, I got the opportunity to work with the Monotone Group for a time. But after landing a routine job as a graphic designer, I had to keep my music as a hobby. Then, I asked Joy, my co-worker, a writer, if she wanted to join me to write songs. That was the starting point of Stoondio.

What convinced you to take your music outside of the bedroom?
I just wanted to share my songs because I liked them so much. After uploading “Untitled 001” to YouTube, I sent it to Bedroom Studio and things just developed from there. A few weeks later, people started really paying attention. I have to thank DJ Wararith “Rith” Mangklanon for airing my song on the Song of the Day and Bedroom of the Day programs on Fat Radio. The audience’s response has been incredible and has led to even more airplay.

Tell us about how you compose your music.
I’ve composed all of my songs using the GarageBand application, as other programs are just too difficult. At first, I put the lyrics and melody together by recording guitar, which is the only instrument I really know how to play, and then I randomly play keyboard sounds, like “ding ding ding” and figure out how it will best fit my song. That’s how I make music.

Where do you get your inspiration?
I am not a big dreamer; I prefer to live in reality. For example, the songs I’ve written are all derived from my real-life experiences, not dreams. I prefer the definition of music as an emotional thing that the writer lays bare. I don’t really think too much about setting goals when I write songs. I appreciate the attention I’m receiving. I didn’t expect it, but only good things can come from it.

Is music your main focus now?
I don’t think about it as my main career as such. I’d like to keep it more as a hobby. I understand that the music business often forces musicians to change their style. But if people like my song, it means that they like the real me. On the contrary, I see graphic design simply as a job. Clients can criticize it all they want and I will fix it. But for music, I want to keep it in my own personal space.


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Here are the top spots for when you just need a comforting bowl of khao tom pla (soft-boiled rice with fish).

Siang Ki Khao Tom Pla

For almost a hundred years, Siang Ki has built a reputation for its scrumptious khao tom pla (B250). Although located in a hidden part of Yaowarat, it still attracts large crowds hankering for a taste of this delicious fish dish. The owners claim that their rice soup recipe originated from ancient China where it was a preserve of the wealthy. The porridge is made from fresh pla jaramed (pomfret fish) with condiments like fresh oyster, fish maw and bateng (fried streaky pork with soy sauce). The tenderness and freshness of the fish cooked in the old-school style is so impressive that you’ll want to make the trek out here time and time again.
54 Soi Bamrungrat, Yaowarat Rd., 02-224-3600. Open daily 4pm-10pm (except last Sunday of every month)

Khao Tom Pla Suan Ruen

For two generations now, Suan Ruen has been serving tasty fare like spicy fish salad, fish tomyam and, of course, khao tom pla krapong (sea bass, B60). The dish here is cooked with tender fresh chunks of fish, the mellow soup brimming with dried shrimp and fried sliced fish tofu and bean curd sauce. For a balanced meal, the recommended accompaniment is the boiled seafood selections (B100) with spicy seafood dipping sauce.
Near Dusit Post office, Ratchasima Rd. (near Yaek Ruamjit), 02-241-7763, 081-924-8004. Open daily 5pm-midnight

Hor Khao Tom Pla

The reason there’s so many good khao tom pla joints in this area is probably because the Saphan Pla (fish market) is right nearby. The owner of Hor Khao Tom Pla (aka Khao Tom Gim Po), Krit Panyawisutthikul, told us that he got his recipe from his father and it’s been in the family for more than 70 years. The soup might not be as powerful as others, but the fish (tao toey, seabass, and grouper) are certainly well selected and the powerful sauce takes it to another level. The stock is made from pork bone, fish and shrimp head resulting in a delicious natural sweetness with no added MSG. Be prepared to battle it out for a parking spot with the endless stream of Mercedes dropping off hisos in the know to eat here.
1897 Charoenkrung Soi 73, 02-675-2598, 084-010-3424. Open daily 6pm-midnight

Hia Waan

Located on the busy Chan Road, Hia Wann might not be a centuries-old institution but nothing beats the size of the seafood it has to offer. The fish, shrimp and squid—they all seem to come from another planet they’re so huge, meaning you certainly get your money’s worth. With their khao tom, the broth is well-balanced, slightly peppery and with no hint of fishy smell. The must-have, though? It might seem strange to say it, but the tomyam is the real star dish here—super yummy.
Chan Rd. (in front of Soi 32/2), 02-211-0829. Open daily 5pm-midnight

Asia Khao Tom Pla

Even when you hear of something tasty across the river, it can still take some convincing to go check it out. Rest assured, though, the khao tom here is worth the effort. The dish can be had with seabass and grouper (B70), both delightfully chunky and naturally sweet. The bean curd sauce is amazingly well-prepared with no hint of fake lime juice, while the chili adds a nice edge. Do order the yam talay (seafood in spicy salad, B120), too, as it comes with very tasty bateng (fried streaky pork with soy sauce).
Suksawat Soi 1/1, 089-141-7485. Open daily 5pm-1am

Q&A: Jannipa ‘Houy’ Chokevichitkul, 66, owner of Hia Waan, talks about her khao tom pla

Where did you get the recipe?
It’s our home recipe. Usually we make khao tom pla at home every weekend. We’re one big family that love to cook and eat together. I sold ped palo (braised duck) for about 60 years before I decided to do this. I just got bored doing the duck and it’s a dish that people would eat mostly on festivals but the khao tom pla is an everyday dish.

Don’t you regret not selling ped palo anymore?
I loved it. It was yummy and our customers still ask about it. But you know, people can always start something new. And the khao tom pla business is going great. I enjoy what I do. I love what I cook. And my family supports me a lot in everything.

What makes your khao tom pla delicious?
Maybe the broth. We use the pork and chicken bone together with the Chinese parsley and garlic and boil it from 9am to 5pm to get the full flavor from it. Always cook daily, otherwise, it won’t be as good.

What about the ingredients?
They’re the most important thing. We get most of the fish from Mahachai market from a supplier. But the fish needs to be fresh and weigh roughly 10-14 kilos.


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After releasing the popular song “Chan Kor Tod” about 10 years ago, Surachet “Ake” Sriprom just returned with a new feel-good single, “Tee Rak (Ter),” which has already garnered a million views on YouTube. The pop singer tells BK about his new more positive songs and outlook, his life in the army and his unfortunate accident last year.

What inspired you to be a singer?
When I was a child I wanted to be like the members of The Beatles, my favorite band. I was fond of their unique songs. They introduced the whole world to a new kind of music and everyone loved it. That was so amazing.

How did you come to sign with RS?
I sang at many restaurants with friends for a living. Fortunately, one of my friends knew a producer named Pee Rojanadara, so one day I recorded a song and left it at his studio. Almost a year later, he called me up to say he liked it, which gave me the chance to work with a talented producer. After this, I presented many more songs to him. At last my dream came true with the song “Chan Kor Tod,” a collaboration with Bandit “Moo Muzu” Sae Ngo, after which I had my own album on RS. After that my life changed, though. I joined the army; meanwhile, my songs, “Chan Kor Tod” and “Nam Suem Bor Sai,” were top of the charts. I was listening to my own songs in the army and thinking, what on earth am I doing here?

Are you happy with the feedback for “Tee Rak (Ter)?”
I’m so happy that listeners love my new song alongside my other sadder songs. Perhaps, they may ask, “Oh! Can Ake Surachet really sing a warm-hearted song like this?” But “Tee Rak (Ter)” is an easy-listening love song, which captures that moment when you have a secret crush on someone.

Can you tell us about your accident last year?
After a gig, I was so tired and sleepy that when I went out to my balcony to collect some washing I accidentally fell from the third floor. I could have died, but luckily I wasn’t critically injured—just a broken wrist and a fractured hip. The clothes line on the second floor saved my life. After this misfortune, though, loads of good things happened to me. My story surprisingly motivated some people to change their lives for the better and it was the first time I really realized that I was famous because I was invited onto various popular TV shows. The most important thing was learning that my life is more valuable than anything.

What can you tell us about life as a soldier?
I volunteered for the army at my brother’s suggestion plus I was bored with too much partying and wanted to get more structure in life. From the army, I’ve made friends and really developed myself. I also learned about several types of weapons and improved my fitness.

Where do you usually play gigs?
Mostly I play at my close friends’ hangouts that I used to play before becoming famous, like About Hip (Prachacheun Road) and The Local (on Rangsit).


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