Anal Retentive Cool
Germans love complaining about how restrictive, bureaucratic and over-regulated their society is, but it's much more an automatic reflex than real. Trust me, I'd much rather be in the claws of the German tax authorities than the IRS, and going through customs at the JFK airport is like trying to get out of a Gulag compared with customs in Germany. But one thing's for sure, as you can see in this comparison of drab, boring German verboten-signs......with cool American verboten-signs (provided here by a reader of mine, Henner, from a recent trip to San Francisco): When we Americans do uptight, we do it with flair. Hey, if you're going to be anal, restrictive and controlling, do it right.