In the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires many aspects of day-to-day city life have been turned upside down by last-minute preparations to receive the hoarders of visitors who will arrive for this year's World Cup football matches.
In the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires many aspects of day-to-day city life have been turned upside down by last-minute preparations to receive the hoarders of visitors who will arrive for this year's World Cup football matches. One of the latest ideas put forth by Argentina's ruling military junta is that taxi drivers should make a serious effort to improve their image.
SYNOPSIS: However this directive has been received with something less than all-out enthusiasm by the drivers themselves. Buenos Aires traffic is as heavy as might be expected and until now cab drivers have maintained their won brand of cheerful anarchy.
This is one example of how the government would like to see things change. The authorities not only want emblems painted on cab doors -- they have also asked the drivers to fix up illuminated signs on their roofs -- and this,say they indignant cabbies, is going too far. "First they make us paint our cabs black and yellow" one of them grumbled , "then new metre flags, painted emblems and illuminated signs -- are all the citizens of Buenos Aires going blind?"
Another moan from the government has focused on the Buenos Aires taxi driver habit to keeping their car radios going full blast at all times. They've been told to silence them. Rubbish, say the drivers -- music helps soothe their passengers' nerves whilst sitting in the city's habitual mammoth traffic jams.
Adding insult to what is already financial injury -- taxi modifications cost each driver one hundred U.S. dollars -- the authorities are insisting that the hirsute, tee-shirted drivers have short -back-and-sides and wear suits, collars and ties. In response to this one angry cabbie exclaimed "I'm a taxi driver not a national serviceman -- what do they think they're on about?" The taxi drivers' union has also warned that ties are dangerous -- drawing attention to the case of a killer who strangled seven taxi drivers with their own ties.