PIRATES understand warp drive too. It took around two weeks for ripped-off
copies of George Lucas' film The Phantom Menace to show up in Phnom Penh. One shop
on Monivong had about 250 copies on May 30. The initial batch sold out faster than
the speed of light.
** After two previous failed attempts to kick the habit, Prime Minister Hun
Sen now says he will quit smoking when he becomes a grandfather. Others in town who
are half-heartedly trying to give up the fags now pledge with a cough and a chuckle
that they will stop when Hun Sen does.
** A German diplomat left town last week with a bee in his bonnet. He stopped
by the FCCC to savor one of the precious German beers he'd heard were available at
a discount price of only $2.50 a liter. When he was presented with a bill for six
bucks the envoy hit the roof and demanded to see the management.
With an explanation that the special deal was only good during May, the German retorted:
"Why aren't there any signs on the wall to tell me the promotion is finished?"
** One Funcinpec official whispered to the Gecko: "Your story about paying
$100,000 for a Senate seat. That figure is too high. And anyway, in Cambodia when
you go to visit the boss it is always polite to bring a gift. That's how it works
here - for all sides."
** One school teacher overdue for a refresher course in linguistics sent off
his students to welcome Vietnam's Communist Party Secretary-General Le Kha Phieu
with this advice: "It's okay to wave the flags, but if you hear any Vietnamese
language cover your ears."
** Serey Kosal got a polite wrap on his knuckles last week in his old haunt
of Battambang. The CPP coppers tagged with trying to figure out what he was up to
decided to check his car and found six unregistered "high-tech" weapons.
The "Tiger of Battambang" was told gently "If you come up here in
the name of the government, no problem with the guns. If you come in the name of
the party, big problem."
** A Khmer who worked for a Christian NGO and was fired when he failed a driving
test by crashing into a wall is confused: "That wall was fixed in one week.
I was broke and they fired me. But Duch, he killed thousands and they forgive him.
I don't get it."