I have, for a long time, been highly critical of the way Mexicans view the concept of queuing. Or rather, how they have no concept of the art of queuing. You know, first come, first served. Wait your turn. Join the end of the line. That sort of thing. The very idea of doing any of those things is quite alien to most Mexicans. Not all, but most. Or at least most of those I ever come into contact with. Even suggesting to a Mexican that they should not just walk straight past everyone else who is waiting for service, to demand their goods, is usually met with a blank and confused look.
But for all my pontificating about the art of queuing, it is possible I have it all wrong. A recent study of the behaviour on board the Titanic as she slipped under the icy waters of the Atlantic, seems to suggest us Brits with our gentlemanly demeanor, our courteous manners, our chivalry, suffered a high price for those principles. The individualist American, with his survival of the fittest attitude fared much better when survival rates were compared.
Had the Titanic been full of Mexicans, and left Veracruz and not Southampton, the results might have been a good deal different. Half empty lifeboats drifting away from doomed passengers still on board? I think not. I’ve seen what they can do with a microbus or a scooter here. I’ll wager there would have been many more survivors! The following audio was broadcast on the BBC recently.