When You Can Run over a Pyongyang Traffic Girl With a Classic Havana Antique Car, the Workers Have Won


Umbrella stand sold separately.

In the capital of North Korea life is beautiful. The girls are beautiful. Even the traffic cops are beautiful.

But Ms. Ro Yong Mi, who enjoys being a girl in the People's Security Bureau's Traffic Control Corps, has too much Juche to hog all the credit. In a testimonial, Ro reminds the outside world that its amply documented fetish for the traffic ladies of Pyongyang can't be sated by nature alone.

Maintaining the corps of "queens of the road" or "beauties of Pyongyang"  requires cosmetic attention from the state, an intervention by Dear Leader Kim Jong-Il, and the most successful equipment redesign by a head of state since Bill Clinton told the owner of a Jersey City Hooters that he liked shorts cut up the side a little more.

Ro's telling of the story is undated—no doubt due to the spontaneity of the writing:

We can hardly expect a beautiful flower without the sun that gives warm light and heat. Likewise, the beautiful and attractive appearance of us girl traffic controllers is not a natural endowment.

We are ordinary, plain-looking girls like others, but the State pays a special concern to us in recognition of our service at crossings throughout the year. Padded clothes we have on are also associated with a gripping story.

On a winter day more than ten years ago, Kim Jong Il saw a traffic controller on duty wearing a skirt in cold weather. He was so worried about us that he told officials concerned to supply all the girl traffic controllers with cotton-padded trousers. Taking the trouble to examine the designs of our uniform, he recommended the one with high boots, saying that the trousers should be tighter to go well with boots and the cap should have a peak to keep off snow and rain.

That is why we were provided with the stylish padded uniforms. Later, we received raincoats, boots, sunglasses, gloves and shoes of the best quality as well. We are continuously supplied with even luxury cosmetics to prevent chaps on our faces. Under such scrupulous care we are spending worthwhile days of duty service without the slightest inconvenience in our work.

Fall in love…

Courtesy of Roger Ebert, whose eye for booty see through all walls of oppression.