471 episodes

Online since 2010! Greg Jorgensen and Ed Knuth have been knocking around Bangkok since the turn of the century. Exploring dark corners, eating amazing food, and interacting with fascinating people, the two have gotten to know and love Thailand's capital in all its confusing, mysterious glory.

Every week they chat about topics near and dear to those living here, those visiting here, or those who are just curious about what it's like to live in Asia's craziest city.

Want to explore Bangkok on your own? Check out Greg's self-guided audio tours on Voice Map! https://voicemap.me/publisher/greg-jorgensen

The Bangkok Podcast Greg Jorgensen & Ed Knuth

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.7 • 121 Ratings

Online since 2010! Greg Jorgensen and Ed Knuth have been knocking around Bangkok since the turn of the century. Exploring dark corners, eating amazing food, and interacting with fascinating people, the two have gotten to know and love Thailand's capital in all its confusing, mysterious glory.

Every week they chat about topics near and dear to those living here, those visiting here, or those who are just curious about what it's like to live in Asia's craziest city.

Want to explore Bangkok on your own? Check out Greg's self-guided audio tours on Voice Map! https://voicemap.me/publisher/greg-jorgensen

    Ed’s City Review: Bangkok vs Hong Kong - Which One Comes Out on Top? [S7.E24]

    Ed’s City Review: Bangkok vs Hong Kong - Which One Comes Out on Top? [S7.E24]

    Continuing our regional focus of late, Greg and Ed discuss Ed’s recent trip to Hong Kong and how it compares to big, bad Bangkok. Ed begins with a big caveat: he’s not really much of a traveler, and he spent only 2 ½ days in Hong Kong, so his take is that of a true noob. That being said, Ed begins on the positive side, noting how geographically beautiful the city is, being situated on mountainous islands that present incredible photo opportunities. 
    However, when compared to Bangkok, Ed found a lot of shortcomings. First, Hong Kongers tend not to smile much, including customer service staff. After years in Thailand, Ed realized how spoiled he has become. Second, the LOCAL cuisine was almost comically bland, with food literally being served unspiced and with no condiments on the table. (Both guys agree though that when you factor in all the international cuisine there, the food options overall are great.) Third, money and social status was discussed openly and almost constantly by Ed’s tour guides, which to Ed’s western ears came across a bit crass.
    On a more neutral note but still unusual, the tour guides also openly discussed Hong Kong politics and their disdain for China in general. As a student of politics, Ed didn’t mind, but their open near-hostility seemed inappropriate in a tourist setting.
    Greg provides some counterpoint to Ed’s experience, having enjoyed Hong Kong in the past, and Ed admits he needs to return, sans tour guides, to explore the city more in depth. How do you think Hong Kong measures up to Bangkok? 
    Don’t forget that Patrons get the ad-free version of the show as well as swag and other perks. And we’ll keep our Facebook, Twitter, and LINE accounts active so you can send us comments, questions, or whatever you want to share.

    • 39 min
    Regional Podcast Pals: Joah McGee on Covering Tragedy & Hope on Insight Myanmar

    Regional Podcast Pals: Joah McGee on Covering Tragedy & Hope on Insight Myanmar

    Wrapping up our short series on our regional podcast peers, Greg interviews Joah McGee from the Insight Myanmar Podcast. Joah begins by explaining his early life in Myanmar and how he initially went to the country to study meditation and later secured a proper job doing training for an American Embassy-related organization. He managed to juggle professional life dealing with politics, with a personal life in monasteries practicing meditation. This eventually led Joah to making a documentary about a famous monk and writing a guidebook for foreigners wishing to study meditation in the country. As his expertise increased, a podcast focused on spiritual aspirants was the logical next step.
    All was not to stay rosy, however, as the country suffered a military coup in 2021. At that point, Joah and his partners made the decision to transition the podcast to more general stories about on-the-ground realities in the country, which of course necessitated dealing with the complex political situation in Myanmar. Greg questions Joah about issues such as self-censorship, guest selection, and the overall tone of the show. Joah explains that the harsh reality of current life in Myanmar requires serious shows, but that he does his best to mix things up and highlight the many special aspects of Burmese culture that people often forget among the grim stories in the news. 
    For a great change of pace from the Bangkok Podcast, check out Insight Myanmar. 
    Don’t forget that Patrons get the ad-free version of the show as well as swag and other perks. And we’ll keep our Facebook, Twitter, and LINE accounts active so you can send us comments, questions, or whatever you want to share.

    • 36 min
    Bangkok Devaluation: A Few Things That Used to Matter…But Don’t Anymore

    Bangkok Devaluation: A Few Things That Used to Matter…But Don’t Anymore

    In a possible new series, Greg and Ed discuss things that have become less important or meaningful since they began living in Thailand. In short, stuff that we used to value a lot that just seems not to matter as much anymore.
    Ed begins with the somewhat obvious: clothes in general just matter a lot less. Never a fashion guy, Bangkok’s ‘uni-season’ is perfect for him since he can basically wear the same thing all year round. Greg - famous for his consistent shorts/t-shirt/vans outfit, concurs that it’s just much easier here to get dressed in the morning. No need for ‘winter clothes,’ giant snow boots, nor rainwear either - rains come and go so quickly, it’s simply better to wait them out.
    Greg starts out with a much more complex topic: he thinks sex and perhaps even romance are given less significance in Thai culture, and it has rubbed off on him in the last twenty years. Many factors could be at play: Thais seemingly casual nature about just about everything, the advantage that foreigners seem to have in the Thai dating market, or perhaps the greater social acceptance of go-go bars and redlight districts. The guys do their best to delve into the nuances of the issue.
    Ed responds by bringing up his total lack of interest in owning a car, something that would be unthinkable anywhere he lived in the U.S. Although Greg likes the freedom owning a car in Bangkok brings, Ed sees it as nothing but a hassle and is glad to be free of looking for parking spaces, paying for upkeep, and worrying how much he has had to drink. 
    Greg then brings up another tricky topic: intellectual property. Back home fake goods were a hard no-no, but their prevalence here has devalued the importance of buying original all the time, with the caveat that you know what you are getting when you buy. 
    Ed finishes off by admitting that he probably cares less about his salary living in Thailand than he would have if he stayed back home. Greg concurs that when the average salaries of nearly everyone else are much lower, it makes it much easier to be happy with what you are getting here, as long as you like your job. 
    Don’t forget that Patrons get the ad-free version of the show as well as swag and other perks. And we’ll keep our Facebook, Twitter, and LINE accounts active so you can send us comments, questions, or whatever you want to share.

    • 31 min
    Regional Podcast Pals: Mike Tatarski on Producing the Vietnam Weekly from Ho Chi Minh City

    Regional Podcast Pals: Mike Tatarski on Producing the Vietnam Weekly from Ho Chi Minh City

    Greg interviews Mike Tatarski of the Vietnam Weekly podcast. Mike begins by explaining the podcast originated out of his Substack newsletter of the same name. After taking a course in ‘entrepreneurial journalism,’ he got motivated to fire up the podcast, and the rest is history. He manages to produce a show per week as a one man band operation but has reached a substantial audience. 
    Greg and Mike then go on to talk about similarities and differences between his show and the Bangkok Podcast. On the one hand, both are in English and therefore have a lot of listeners that are neither Thai nor Vietnamese and also have a lot of interviews, but on the other hand, Mike’s background is in journalism and his show tends to focus more on serious news stories. The BP of course is two clueless dudes trying to make each other laugh with an occasional dose of useful information.
    The guys go on to address topics such as the podcast communities in Vietnam and Thailand, how to find good topics for shows, and the delicate problem of keeping a show fresh and authentic in countries that do not share the same appreciation for freedom of speech that most Western countries do. 
    If you have any interest in learning more about traveling to or living in Vietnam, definitely check out the Vietnam Weekly podcast!
    And if you’re wondering what that photo is, make sure to listen after the end music to hear how Greg’s supporting his son’s (now illegal) business with his school pals.
    Don’t forget that Patrons get the ad-free version of the show as well as swag and other perks. And we’ll keep our Facebook, Twitter, and LINE accounts active so you can send us comments, questions, or whatever you want to share.

    • 46 min
    Looking Back on the 2006 Coup and Why We’re Still Feeling it Today

    Looking Back on the 2006 Coup and Why We’re Still Feeling it Today

    Greg and Ed revisit the 2006 coup in Thailand and reminisce about the oddness but also impactfulness of the experience. Ed begins with a quick recap of the career of Thaksin Shinawatra, the billionaire business tycoon who swept to power (democratically) in 2000 on a promise to fix the Thai economy which was still reeling from the 1997 financial crisis. He did in fact manage to stabilize the economy and easily won re-election in 2004. Although controversies did mar his terms, his ability to repay loans to the World Bank and IMF lent him significant credibility. 
    However, in 2006, a constitutional crisis ensued in parliament, and eventually, while Thaksin was away in New York giving a speech to the United Nations, the military seized control of the government. Ed relates his utter shock at waking up to headlines of “COUP D’ETAT,” and Greg talks about the strange expectation of tanks rolling through the streets and whether or not it was even going to be safe going outside. Alas, the coup was real but also almost entirely peaceful, with soldiers manning the streets accepting flowers and taking selfies with pedestrians.
    The guys wonder at the difference between pre-coup Thailand and post-coup Thailand, the relative peace beforehand and the almost constant political drama since. In their time in Thailand, the guys can’t think of another single event that changed life in the Land of Smiles as much as the 2006 coup. 
    Don’t forget that Patrons get the ad-free version of the show as well as swag and other perks. And we’ll keep our Facebook, Twitter, and LINE accounts active so you can send us comments, questions, or whatever you want to share.

    • 36 min
    Checking in on Bangkok’s Craft Beer Scene with BangkokBeerGuide.com

    Checking in on Bangkok’s Craft Beer Scene with BangkokBeerGuide.com

    Greg interviews Clif from BangkokBeerGuide.com about the ever evolving craft beer scene in Thailand. Cliff begins with the basic premise for the website and related social media: to act as a guide for locals and visitors to all the beer drinking opportunities in Bangkok, especially craft beers made by locals. The guys then review the famously restrictive Thai laws governing beer and alcohol in general, such as the prohibition on purchasing alcohol from 2 pm to 5 pm in the afternoon, and high minimum requirement for brewing beer that effectively shuts out all but the largest companies. 
    Clif then digs deep to explain his love of beer as an act of creativity of the brewmaster but at the same time a “common man’s” drink. Hence, Cliff’s desire to promote local craft beer as a way to connect with small-scale Thai brewers. Unfortunately, Thai laws, supported by powerful forces best not discussed, make it harder for Thai ‘little guys’ to get into the business of making beer. Greg and Cliff express hope that beer champion Taophipop wins his epic battle to reform Thai beer laws. 
    The guys continue discussing various venues about town, how the scene has changed over time, and Cliff’s philosophy for the website. Listen in for a great overview of the Thai craft beer scene circa 2024.
    Don’t forget that Patrons get the ad-free version of the show as well as swag and other perks. And we’ll keep our Facebook, Twitter, and LINE accounts active so you can send us comments, questions, or whatever you want to share.

    • 47 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
121 Ratings

121 Ratings

Mental_Wrestle ,

Great dynamic between the two hosts.

Love it. Less interviews and more topics please

Alfoneh ,

Excellent introduction…

to Thai politics and society. Thank you!

ORT 23 ,

The best podcast

I’ve listened to this podcast—- this is the only podcast I’ve listened to every week for the last 3 years. I absolutely LOVE Greg and Ed’s content and it has helped me go from a 15 year old cross country runner to a professional 18 year old 100 mile runner, and they literally were the ONE podcast I listened to every week before my long reps on a track

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