The green man is normally taken as the universal symbol for "Cross Now", but my experience of Paris is that the symbol should be taken to mean: "Cross now, if you've got the balls".

Here in Ireland, it is normally sufficient to fix motorists with a steely glare to intimidate them into giving way to you. Although the positioning of pedestrian crossings is apparently quite random, you rarely need them here in Dublin anyway, as the traffic is so bad you can simply weave your way across between the stationary vehicles.