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Look both ways… twice

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Some people really hate this about Sao Paulo… err Brazil in general.  You can’t cross the street and expect the cars to stop.  Pedestrians do not have the right away here.  I have a super cute adorable little ball of fofo- “cute” so people usually stop  out of courtesy.   In fact some nice old lady helped me carry groceries home the other day.  See aren’t Brazilian’s nice.

Well that is of course until they get behind the wheel.  They go flying through intersections.  If you are the pedestrian you had better look both ways and make sure there are no cars coming.  And if you see a motoboy, don’t even think about trying to beat him to the other side of the crosswalk, because he will get there first. AND he will definitely not stop.

I like this, no more lame pedestrians jumping into the cross walk making you stop and miss the next light.  Yeah, I suck, oh well.

So with that introduction to the laws of crossing the street in Brazil. I found this little site funny.  A crossing guard.

See how the guy is holding a VERY long pole with a STOP flag on the tip of it? Yep that’s right, even crossing guards here know better than to stand in the center of a crosswalk with a shiny orange vest and a stop sign.  They’re not taking any chances with their lives either.


About scrubgrub

I'm just another soul on the internet, posting random thoughts into the ether, because well I love stumbling on other peoples random thoughts, so I figured why not add mine to the mix too. I'm also the mom to two very funny little boys, and how can you not share that with everyone?

9 responses »

  1. The guy on your photo is actually not a crossing guard, he is a “marketing” person paid by the city to try and improve enforcement of traffic/pedestrian laws.
    The city is running an agressive campaign to try and reduce the number of people hit by cars, and yes, you guessed it, motoboys 🙂
    By the way, I wish they did the same in New York or any other large American city by the way.
    Massachusetts and Rhode Island are the ONLY places I feel safe when crossing a street in the US.
    In Florida they will honk the horn and shoo you out of the way even inside Grocery stores parking lots.
    I think unfortunately, rudeness towards pedestrians are a universal thing of big cities.
    Off course, civilized Europe doesn’t count, you can cross in Europe with no problem, but God help you in any large American or Brazilian city.
    The pedestrian better watch out.
    Rio de Janeiro has an entire city park dedicated to educating pedestrians and improving civilized life around the city, it definitely is an up hill battle.
    I hope Sao Paulo see goods results from their new agressive campaing to improve and enforce rules for pedestrians and reduce accidents.


    • ojeitobrasileiro

      Interesting, thanks for the insight. But yes rudeness is a given in most big cities. I hear Boston is insanely rude.

  2. In SF, pedestrians rule. 🙂

    Holy cow, Boston is rude. Glad I only went there once.

  3. Yes, I totally understand where you might be coming from, it’s nothing personal, I promise, New Englanders are just bluntly honest and very often misunderstood by unsuspecting Southern visitors 🙂
    They just don’t have the constant cheesy ( sometimes fake ) smiles we used to see in the South all the time.
    New Englanders have a spicy and sophisticated sense of humor when you get to know them a little better and will become friends for life. It’s no coincidence many notorious American comedians are originally from New England such as Jay Leno ( born in NY but raised in Andover, MA), Conan O’Brien ( Brookline, MA), Steve Carell ( Concord, MA), and Dane Cook ( Boston, MA), just to name a few.

    We were shocked when we first moved here from Dallas, Texas, we were used to the constant cheesy smiles that didn’t mean a thing, but quickly adapted and understood the New Englanders, they are more reserved and smile when they mean it, people often mistake that for rudeness, but we understand, once we also felt the same way you did when we first arrived here and didn’t know anything about New England.
    However, regarding the traffic laws and respecting pedestrians, there is SEVERE punishment and STRICT laws protecting pedestrians from drivers in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Maine.
    This is really refreshing, cars here DO respect pedestrians like nowhere we have ever seen around the United States, there are signs everywhere alerting drivers to respect and STOP for pedestrians, and you better believe it, if you hit a pedestrian here, you will be in serious trouble for life, drivers don’t even go there, people drive slow and watch for pedestrians all the time.


  4. Yeah, New Englanders are the worst customer I ever had to deal with, with their “blunt” honesty. Maybe they never learned manners or how to deal with people outside of their communities.

  5. Dane Cook is also a tool.

  6. San Francisco is GREAT! I miss San Francisco!

  7. LittleGreenMan

    Just as a small piece of info: in Brasília-DF you can use the crossing lanes (faixas de pedestre) without fear, just stand and wave your hand in front of you and cars will stop, it’s amazing I know, but since the law was introduced in 1997 here might be the only place it really worked.
    Oh, and honking is frowned upon in the city, even in bad traffic jams. So we barely use it…yeah, amazing too.

  8. in Gramado, Rio Grande do Sul, you can almost cros the street with your eyes closed.


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