BANGKOK — When a southern durian tycoon called off a contest to marry off his daughter because he was overwhelmed by inquiries, he wasn’t kidding.
For merely writing about Arnon Rodthong’s proposal, Khaosod English got a small taste of that in the form of wonderful and odd inquiries from men – and women – who signed their letters from locations including the United States, Germany, Russia and Mauritius.
The strong work ethic sought by Arnon in his daughter’s future husband shone through in nearly every message (“I always give my best and work as hard as I can!), with almost as many insisting “I’m not in it for the money.”
Many confused us with the father, such as a German paramedic “looking for a new life” who solemnly vowed he “would [do] everything to make her happy for the rest of our life.”
A “shy” aspiring Nigerian doctor, who also mistook us for a matchmaking service, was prepared for skepticism.
“I don’t expect you to believe that am a diligent type and of good character but I can assure you that your daughter will be in safe hands,” he wrote.
Even after learning the tournament had been canceled, one 33-year-old Canadian wasn’t giving up. He wrote back to make it clear – this had become serious.
“I’m not in it for the contest or money, I’ve fallen for Karnista.”
[Actually it’s Karnsita, but hey, close enough for true love.]
It wasn’t only messages from men that found our inbox. A mother from Alaska, the last American frontier, offered up her two large sons, both of whom she assured were over 6-feet tall and “healthy.”
As proof of the boys’ kindness, she shared this anecdote:
“For Valentine’s day the boys used their own money and made me Hawaiian pizza. I like Hawaiian pizza and they really do not.
One caveat: both of her “good boys” are only 17, and she insisted that one (not actually her son) “would really have to be 18 before he could do anything.” Thanks for the warning.
A 41-year-old Chinese-American went to impressive lengths with a full resume, cover letter and draft business plan to grow and expand the durian empire. But all that came with a condition of his own – no “Korean plastic surgery.”
“I’d rather she didn’t end up looking like one of those humorless, shrunken, v-shaped heads talking about what they had for afternoon tea on Youtube,” he wrote. Got issues?
But really, Arnon need look no further than one suitor whose brief pitch covered all the bases – and ALL the qualifications.
“I am a successful business owner. I’m a US citizen with all the qualifications. I don’t need any money!”
An Indonesian-American woman also chimed in, not to advocate for any would-be groom but to urgently warn both father and daughter of “user broke man.”
“I think you need to get in touch to that young lady and tell the truth about man so she is not going to be taking advantage of,” she wrote. “[H]er father is not thinking straight. Buying a man is not right… Men is a provider no lady can buy a gentleman. He is attracting user broke man.”
We’re sure Arnon Rodthong would sleep better tonight knowing that.