21 August 2008

A Great Idea From Iraq

The NY Times Baghdad Bureau has an interesting post about keeping Shi'ite pilgrims cool in Baghdad's notoriously hot summer (think sticking your head in an oven while making a pit stop in Dante's Inferno):

It’s seventh circle of hell hot, you’re stuck in a traffic jam with four million people heading to the same pilgrimage, and Iraq’s version of the Squeegee Man dashes out into the road to wash you down.

Not your windshield. You.

When I lived in Los Angeles, which frequently involves sitting in traffic as a matter of routine life, I always wished for a good hose-down to cool off. Of course in America, this would probably subject the squeegee man to a string of lawsuits for providing such a great public service. The downside of affluence.