Indian Roulette anyone?

You’ve heard of Russian Roulette, played by stressed out soldiers in Vietnam, and drunken mercenaries in the rough spots of the world to prove themselves. Load a Colt .45 that takes six bullets with one, spin the chamber and hold the barrel against your temple and pull the trigger. If, by chance, the spinning bullet chamber stops at the one which has the bullet, you die instantaneously. It’s the highest stake gamble that you can think of.

We have our own version here in Chennai. I had to drive from Perungudi, where I live, to MMA colony off the 100 foot road to see my dentist. Actually my wife drove me as I was pretty worn out with travel, work and an infected root canal. You know what its like going to see the dentist, right? I don’t know what is worse, the anticipation of pain, or the actual experience!

At any rate, the 100 foot road is where I saw Indian Roulette being played. As the appointment was for seven PM, we had the dubious delight of negotiating rush hour traffic from Perungudi to Madhya Kailash, thence to Raj Bhavan, via Saidapet Bridge to Mambalam, The Ashok Pillar to the 100 foot road till one turns off to the MMA colony. The traffic was at its chaotic best most of the way. But the experience of the 100 foot road left one speechless.

At the signal where the road to Vadapalani and Vijaya Hospital cuts across the 100 foot road, the traffic was dense, desperate, edgy, and backed up some 300 feet down the road going towards Koyambedu. That meant you had to move forwards and stop at least once or twice to make it through the light. When we were finally going through, in bumper to bumper traffic, a cyclist goes through the red light, and starts cutting across the traffic, going towards Kodambakkam!

You can imagine the ensuing bedlam. What could he possibly be thinking? It struck me that this must be the popular way of playing Indian Roulette. The stakes are high-so high you could die! We saw something similar at another light on the 100 foot road coming back, when two motor cycles went through the red light and started across the road through traffic streaming through on a green light. Its amazing that, in the ensuing pile up and bedlam, no one was hurt. Given that the 100 foot road has trucks, buses, LCVs, autos, cars, motor bikes and all speeding down it.

Indian Roulette anyone? Looks like there are quite a few takers. Every day.

1 Comment so far

  1. PETER (unregistered) on June 28th, 2006 @ 5:14 pm

    Nothing prepared me for the chaotic traffic of Chennai or “driving by horn.” (and they all have different sounds -charming!)

    In various modes of transport, my head was inches away from the rear-end of a bus – I said a sincere “Act of Contrition” each time I got into an auto-rickshaw.

    Traffic was horrible in Chennai, not much better in Bangalore, terrible in Hyderabad (but I at least learned how to cross the street)…

    The smog on the street was so thick you could cut it with a knife…

    “Incredible India?” I’ll take the south of France or Tuscany next year, thank-you-very-much.

Terms of use | Privacy Policy | Content: Creative Commons | Site and Design © 2009 | Metroblogging ® and Metblogs ® are registered trademarks of Bode Media, Inc.