Monday, February 17, 2014

Los Comecaca

Lima has a problem. It is of the fecal kind and it is because people don't pick up after their dogs.

That is where Los Comecaca come in to play.

Barranco, a district within Lima, decided to get clever and the municipality created Los Comecacas, essentially the poop eaters. They are cartoon characters of the stereotypical Peruvians that nobody likes. They include, the corrupt politician or businessman (El Corrupto), the tramp (La Tramposa), the gossipy housewife (La Chismosa), the uneducated creep on the street who whistles and shouts inappropriate things at women (El Mañoso), the party boy footballer who drinks too much (El futbolista Juergero), and the guy who has no issue backstabbing his friends and co-workers (El Maletero).

These characters now adorn garbage bins all around Barranco. They say "In Barranco, we put poop where it belongs", and that is literally into the mouths of these detestable characters.

On the one hand I think it is a clever idea. On the other hand I think it just perpetuates stereotypes and gives people more fuel to use them. I also think that this plan did not put into consideration that most people do not pick up the excrement of their furry friends because they don't have bags with them. What they should do is set up plastic (biodegradable) bag stations next to the comecacas and then there would be absolutely no excuse for not picking up the poop. I think changing habits of its residents is a difficult task for the municipality to undertake and this is a step in the right direction.

Here is the video. It is not in English but you will get the idea. It is a very well edited video I might add.

The video function is not working right now so here is the link to the video: Los Comecaca

*Update: I passed one of Los Comecaca this morning while on the metropolitano and I saw that there was a stand that had bags for dog walkers. This campaign made the front page news on the publimetro (a free newspaper given out at the metropolitano stations) as well. Fantastic! Excellent work Barranco!

**Another Update: There has been quite a stir on social networking sites about this campaign. Check out the article linked below for more information. I definitely think that the ladies who are upset about the home wrecker character have some valid points. It's not always the woman that wrecks the home. It is a two way street. Also, why is open minded used as a bad trait? Check it out.

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