Screwing and Spinning

South Africans of all races love screwing. A few nights ago some people were screwing down the street from me. I heard the noise and I decided to go take a look.

Check out this video of people screwing

You really should watch the video, but for those of you behind expensive cell phone Internet like me, screwing is Tokyo Drift meets Demolition Derby. Basically, you throw some old tires on the rear wheels and you drift in circles as fast as you can, the rear of your car flying perilously close to the gathered spectators. Eventually the tires wear away and you put a new set on and repeat.

Crazy stuff. Everyone cheers and drinks and parties and has fun while watching. I saw all sorts of people from my neighborhood there, and a bunch of kids from school. It’s a major social event.

Screwing is very popular. And around here, Sunday night is screwing night. I guess the screwing “crews” (some are even sponsored) coordinate and spread the word that they’ll be wherever. People come from all over the area, and the screwing happens in different locations depending on the mood of the crews and the expectations for police response. I met people from up to an hours drive away, including some white people who had come to the township to watch.

The police did not interrupt the event, but around 10PM everyone kind of dispersed. A police van did come through at one point, but the police just took a look around and let it proceed. They apparently need to bring in riot support to disperse the large crowds. Supposedly, a kid lost an eye not too long ago when the police used rubber bullets to clear a screwing event.

You can see all the evidence of tire use the morning after:

For anybody reading this in the local area, there’s a giant (legal) screwing event happening Dec 5th. It’s 50 Rand, but word on the street is that it will be awesome. It’s within an hour of Nelspruit.


pete says:

kind of like what Oakland calls “sideshows”. they’re highly illegal here, though.

09 Nov 10 @ 6pm

Michael Latsch says:

A previously undiscovered cultural link between SA and NE MN-except up here, we usually do it on iced parking lots and call it “doing donuts” and the lower coefficient of friction means less tire destruction.

10 Nov 10 @ 3am