Underneath the neo-gothic façade of the Neues Rathaus, at the center of Munich’s busy Marienplatz, a set of keen, unwavering eyes and a sense of judgment so sharp it could cut through one of those impossible-to-open plastic packages that scissors come in, is about to spring into action. Step swift with indignation, the queen of the realm emerges to correct an affront to nature, common sense and humanity – a sockless child.
The Omapolizei swoops. As she does, she engages in an intricate dance of eyebrows and nostrils that will leave her prey shaken and disturbed. She has and will perform this dance many times over… Some Omapolizei can strike hundreds of times throughout their lifetime!
Let’s learn more about this fascinating species.
An Omapolizei is a member of a self-appointed network of middle-aged and elderly women who patrol Munich’s streets. While she may not look like the region’s key predator, she is no ordinary animal. The urban oasis of orderly buildings, lanes, and parks is her domain and her battlefield.
Although typically weighing between 40 and 100 kilos, the Omapolizei are further weighed down by a sense of great obligation and archaic belief systems, making them Munich’s largest busybody. They can be recognized by a deeply furrowed brow, a disapproving tongue-clicking and a characteristic shaking of the head.
Often, but not always, they sport seasonally unsuitable clothing and a confident sense of authority.
Omapolizei favor open, populated spaces and gravitate towards bus and tram stops, shopping passages and parks. They are not very discriminating, however, and can also be found in supermarkets, narrow lanes, lifts and even public restrooms. They prefer well-lit areas, where their tenacious face muscle gymnastics can be seen at greatest advantage.
Despite existing in large numbers, Omapolizei rarely form social groups. Instead, they congregate in particular sections of Munich, bound by a common disdain for parents who don’t see the inherent value of hats.
Their preferred method of operation is guerrilla warfare – they materialize out of thin air to shout about the dangers of wind on bare earlobes before vanishing, like terrifying, angry magicians. Nothing is beneath their notice.
They exist to educate the public about the gravest dangers affecting humanity: the lack of appropriate head- or footwear, the use of pacifiers, the prevalence of mobile electronic devices, babies crying, toddlers acting like toddlers and parents acting like parents (too empathetic, not empathetic enough, slightly more empathetic than is deemed necessary, etc).
Toxicity and treatment
Due to a concentrated level of venom, Omapolizei can be dangerous to encounter. Victims of an attack often report feeling shocked, confused, angry and violently-inclined for many hours and sometimes even days, weeks or months afterward.
If you find yourself faced with an Omapolizei, avoid eye contact if possible. A smile will often disorient them long enough to allow you to make a speedy getaway. Claiming to be a pediatrician, a competent mother or a person not in search of unsolicited advice will likely be met with aggression. Once attacked, apply common sense and group support to the affected area.
Agnes Stockburger is a writer, editor, and published author. In her glory days, she wrote for the likes of Australian Broker, SheKnows, and Yahoo!7. These days you’re more likely to find her sticking Duplo blocks in the fridge and the milk in the mailbox because OMG her kids will NOT sleep. She has lived in Munich for six years, has two dirndls and gave birth in German. Twice. This obviously qualifies her to write about the local culture with impunity.