Italian Stallions

Nov 22, 2010

This was sent in by Jane Hinkley and it's from my haute couture series.

Sunny Italy; the land of our ancestors, fabulous food, amazing art, and crazy drivers. While many Italian cities claim to have the best cuisine, or the best impressive art collections, they all come in a distant second to Naples when it comes to the craziest drivers. In fact, Neapolitan drivers might just be the craziest drivers in the world. And they adhere to a simple creed. It's this: I'm the only driver on the road, and mine is the only car.

Now in addition to being the craziest of drivers, Neapolitan men are without a doubt, also slaves to fashion. So when a certain law was enacted a few years ago in Italy, it led to an unusual and unique fashion creation. Are you ready for this? Neapolitan men began wearing white shirts with a diagonal black stripe. So the question is, what was the law that led to this odd style in men's attire?
RAY: Here's the answer. In 2003 Italy passed a nationwide seatbelt law requiring that everyone in a car wear a seatbelt. It also allowed the Carabinieri the right to stop anybody who they thought wasn't wearing a seatbelt, even if that person was not involved in any other infraction.

So what better way to make the Carabinieri think you were wearing a seatbelt than by wearing a shirt with a diagonal stripe that ran from your left shoulder down to your right, down to your waist. It made it look like you were wearing the seatbelt. And, of course, if you were the passenger you had to wear the shirt inside out. Anyway, do we have a winner?

TOM: We certainly do. Our winner this week is John Slater from Wheaton, Illinois. And for having his answer selected from all the correct answers that we got, John is going to get a $26 gift certificate to the Shameless Commerce Division at

RAY: Congratulations, John!

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