By Cory Doctorow at 8:06 am Sun, Jan 22, 2012
Here's a Filipino traffic-cop performing his duties while breakdancing, to the great delight of a large and excited crowd.
Filipino Traffic Cop Doing His Job Like A Boss
(via 3 Quarks Daily)
I miss the Philippines so much. This is a very common sight in the country, especially in areas where traffic lights aren’t installed.
I grew up in Bacolod City and right down the street, at a very busy intersection, the traffic cop is dancing traffic directions. My brothers and I used to sit and watch for hours. What makes it even more impressive is the fact that almost everyone in the country drives like a maniac. It isn’t uncommon to have cars zipping by at unsafe speeds right by a police officer as he’s dancing in the middle of the intersection.
Thanks for posting this. Brings back memories.
Where would he even stand were he to be in the roads leading to Intramuros in Metro manila? Where there are not even like lanes of traffic just a parking lot slowly moving in every direction at once?
On another note, I hear Noynoy will be giving his state of the union address from a karaoke machine rather than a teleprompter? Joke lang ; )
Well, that one is.
Do you not know any gay men?
Looks quite a bit like the handsigns found on a carrier deck (or on a baseball pitch).
Oddly enough, “breakdancing-Filipino-traffic-cop” is my mantra for meditation.
Really?! Mine’s “Filipino-box-spring-hog.”
Tom Waits fan much?
That’s not breakdancing. MJ did pop and lock, never break.
Yeah, really. That’s not even remotely breakdancing. Still fun to watch, though.
This is getting scary. If Filipino traffic cop were to meet North Korean traffic girl in a show-stopping Bollywood musical dance number, and the whole thing were reenacted by Filipino prisoners, I fear BoingBoing would implode on itself and become a singularity with a viral meme horizon diameter in excess of 100,000 km.
Your theory is preposterous.
Needs a least one cat.
You mean…as a catalyst? (Shoot me now.)
I would, but catital punishment is generally not part of my dogma. I save that for rabbit fundamentalists.
We could incorporate the dancing Japanese death-row prisoners in the animal costumes proposed earlier.
The soundtrack would have to be from Die Antwoord
Agreed: this is not breakdancing (not much of pop & lock either).
What it is, is: excellent.
Maybe they were prison guards before they became traffic cops.
Remember those convicts groovin’ to Michael Jackson?
Well I know where I wanna go if I have to go to jail.
Nice to see dance offering evolutionary advantage beyond simple reproductive success.
That looks like a pretty clever strategy.
Makes a kind of repetitive task more creative and thus more engaging (more fun) for the cop, so that’s a quality-of-life/morale thing. Assuming it’s voluntary rather than a requirement – some days you just don’t feel like dancing, neh?
The motion makes the cop easier to spot visually, and the rhythm is more attention getting. Someone pelvic-thrusting their way across the intersection would certainly get my attention, anyways. Is it just me, or is he picking mostly moves and gestures that involve/emphasize the fluorescent parts of his uniform? Making the most of an attention getting uniform :)
@boingboing-b250584e378474b56af391b50c02864d:disqus – I am definitely seeing bird display dances, but don’t forget many of those have territorial defence functions as well; if you can impress/intimidate another male with your routine, you don’t have to fight him. The cop could be said to be making a territorial display to avert a violent confrontation as well – or even an exaggerated threat display; certainly in a vehicle-vs-cop confronation my money is on the vehicle, so everything he does that stops a dispute over the territory in the centre of the intersection from breaking out is pro-survival :)
Plus, the guy’s dancing.
Next season on ABC . . . “So You Think You Can Direct Traffic?”
Hey that looks cool but
Boy what a crappy attempt to direct traffic
It doesn’t look like he is giving the drivers any actual signals. Usually diricting traffic is something like point at driver , then un-ambigiously make a standard signal for the driver to follow.Gee , it doesn’t look like any of the drivers are paying any attention to him anyway.Pedestrians either.
Hell, he doesn’t even show up in the reflections on the side of the passing cars It’s funny how when the focus shifts on the overall scene it does not shift on him, and why does his outline sparkle like that, and why no shadow?
It’s very nicely done , and I always thought that MJ sort of looked like he was directing traffic , but this seems a little less than real.
You’re just mad that you can’t dance well enough to sparkle.
Traffic culture differs radically around the world… you may not know the language.
P2 is hilarious! But having been in this traffic can tell you that the traffic would look more like this were he not there
:) Dude, it’s mainly in the gloves and whistle (which we don’t hear). The body is pure entertainment factor. If you ignore the body (all in black, except the yellow safety vest) and look at the gloves you’ll see yellow and red. A combination of directional pointing for turns, waving the hands to say “move on” for forward and solid display of red palms as a “stop!” is where the action happens. It’s real.
NEIN! Das Auto kann nicht wegen des Tanzens alleine zusammengestoppen sein! UND, UND das Zeichen MUSS, UNMISSVERSTÄNDLICH, in einen genormten Signal mit den Kartoffelsacken für den Fahrer ausdrücken gemacht werden.
This guy bears a striking resemblance to a co-worker of mine (who dances hula…)
Still, the job seems dull, dirty and dangerous: but what an awesome way to make it cool.
And I imagine the closest concessions must love him: they better keep him caffeinated gratis every day he comes to work…
Compared to the mind-numbing job of the cop who monitors/controls the rope holding back the pedestrians waiting to cross (check the background), directing traffic must be a plum job.
And yet, still utterly boring.
Dancing and singing is more common and important to culture other than America mainstream. For example, you won’t be president in the Philippines if you can’t sing. Period.
The video was also done well. I loved the double take during the “Don’t think twice!”
I think you’ve been had…this video is fake, tho well done. The traffic and the “cop” a two different videos. At certain times you can see that his perspective doesn’t quite match that of the cars. Also, watch his shadow or lack thereof versus the passing cars.
Exactly my thoughts. I wanted to think this was real & had no agenda to think otherwise.
However, he just didn’t seem to ‘fit in’ with what was going on…didn’t really stop any traffic…and the, as you’d said, the ‘perspective’ doesn’t jive with the surrounding scene.
I think a bit of it was real…i.e. the last bit…but for the most part, I get the feeling it’s been ‘put together’.
If you’re going to use the fact that he “didn’t really stop any traffic,” as a reason this is fake, then you obviously haven’t ever been to Manila. ;)
No I haven’t…and point taken. :)
I guess, I was more wondering about the ‘perspective’ not looking the same with the person & his surroundings.
I love it when folks in uniform – especially cops – assert their humanity.
This is kung fu, like the Royal Enfield pinstriper.
The folks claiming it’s fake are a good example of cynicism taken to the point where it’s just as foolish as it is to be gullible.
I feel like somehow, someway, this dude is related to my son. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=arZ8mPhW6Vo
you shoulda high-fived him instead of laughed :)
Did you catch his “oh shoot…busted” expression at the end? I will always laugh at my kids if I bust them, as they do to me. He dances because our family loves to jam out, listen to music and dance together. We totally encourage our kids in all of the arts. That said, I will never ever pass up the opportunity to bust on my kids.
If you are wondering if this negatively affected him, know this: when this thing went viral, all the 5th graders (he’s in 4th) were high fiving him in the halls at school. Frankie’s math teacher even put on some MJ at the end of the lesson when the kids all wanted him to dance. He was happy to do it. That is what I love about that kiddo–he’s not the least bit afraid to express himself.
sweet. i didn’t mean any harm. i put a smiley in there, i got that y’all were ok with each other.
i dance all the time, too.
Now THAT’S a wonderful thing!
1. Bad resolution creates video artifacts like weird outlines
2. Watch some of the people crossing the street–they have/don’t have as much shadow as the cop
3. If you still think he doesn’t cast a shadow, you’re arguing that somebody took the time to create moving masks so you could see his body through car windows…but forgot to put a shadow underneath him
What the heck is that orange vehicle at 1:54? It looks like an ageing shark gliding through the intersection, but it’s nothing that’s ever been sold in North America. Never seen one before.
Glad to see BoingBoing’s posting some ‘good cop’ stories. :)
Awesome vid, and Cory’s so slick. He purposeful put “breakdancing” in the title of this post so I’d watch it aaaaaaaall the way to the applause waiting for some actual breakdancing. I’m still waiting.
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