The world is full of cities where speed limits are ignored, traffic lights are merely a suggestion, and a mid-day dash to the grocery store turns into an adrenaline-filled game of Grand Theft Auto. After years of struggling to control the drivers with signs and fines, some of them have finally decided to fight crazy with crazy.
Last year, the traffic police of Nagpur, India tried to harness the paranormal power of pyramids by putting them at risky intersections in a bid to reduce accidents. And now the city of Caracas in Venezuela, allegedly home to some of the worst drivers in the world, has hired 120 mimes to work at busy intersections. Their job is to do what the police haven’t been able to – control traffic. Dressed in colorful costumes and chalk-white make-up, the mimes try to reprimand errant drivers by poking, mocking and wagging their fingers at them. Given that the internet is bursting with ‘I Hate Mimes’ groups, the experiment seems doomed. But the mimes are positive, and declare that people have been supportive and encouraging.
I only have one important, if slightly politically incorrect, question: If a mime gets hit by a particularly stubborn driver, will he make a sound?