Missing helmets

Friday, 16 December 2011 From Issue Vol. XIX No. 50 By  Hillary

Dear Hillary,

There’s signs all over the place about motorcycle riders should wear helmets and every so often (towards the end of the month when police salaries are running low) there’s a blitz on them.  Yet the riders continue to disobey the rules.  Forget about the fact that they’re risking severe injuries and even death, how come they don’t get the message and just wear the damn things?

Leo

Dear Leo,

Everything you have said is quite true, but there are a couple of reasons why this situation arises.  Firstly, Thailand is very hot and helmets are hot to wear, so the best place for the helmet is in the wire basket up front.  Secondly, wearing a helmet messes up the rider’s hair, and Thai women wish to remain glamorous at all times.  Thirdly, there’s always risks in life, and the chance that the friendly boys in brown are around the corner is just one the risks that Thai people are prepared to take.  Just like riding up one-way streets the wrong way.  Or riding under the influence of several liters of beer at Songkran.  Or, or, or … the list is endless.  While still on helmets, many of them are so flimsy they are quite useless, and the better ones don’t get done up.  It’s a long hard road to sense, Leo.

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