Yesterday, just two days after being officially introduced, the law decreeing that motorcyclists and scooter riders must wear a fluorescent armband has been scrapped. It was unpopular from the moment it was first suggested, with bikers declaring the tiny armband would do nothing at all to improve their safety. It seems unlikely that it would. Bikers are most at risk from motorists who simply don’t look properly and pull out in front of them. If they can’t even see a person on a large motorised machine approaching them, they’re sure as heck not going to spot an armband, now are they?
It’s pretty much certain that the ridiculous and detested ethylotest law introduced by Sarko but delayed by Hollande will finally be properly repealed this year too. It was meant to come into effect in July, but not enforced until November since no one could ever get hold of the authorised breathalysers. However, by then its introduction date had been pushed back again. It’s a total farce.
And there are other crazy laws in existence. One of Benj’s friends told him about one that requires each householder to keep a bale a hay in case the king should ever pass by and need to feed his horse. Apparently this is still in effect, but since there isn’t a king any more, I wouldn’t worry about it too much. Here are a few more:
You’re not allowed to die if you haven’t bought your cemetery plot yet.
It’s OK for women to wear trousers so long as they’re riding either a bicycle or a horse.
Women who want to dress like men have to get permission from the Prefecture.
You’re not allowed to kiss and cuddle at a railway station. If the driver has to wait for you to finish your fond farewells, you might make the train late.
Between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. 70% of music played on radio stations must be French.
It’s illegal to take photos of gendarmes or their vehicles, even if they’re only in the background.
An ashtray must be treated as a deadly weapons, and in Paris, dustbins come under the same rule. (I’m trying to find out what exactly that means. Should they be kept in a locked cupboard when not in use, like guns have to be?)
Flying saucers are banned from landing in Avignon.
And I wonder what equally daft new ones the government will introduce this year!