Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Sign, Sign, Everywhere a Sign

     Okay, this post is like taking candy from a baby.  It's a complaint that we've all heard before, but it bears repeating in this here forum.  Why?  Because I find it so damn annoying.

     Recently while travelling on one of our fine B.C. Ferries vessels I was up on the sun deck.  The sun deck had loads of aluminum benches to sit on and enjoy the sun.  On each bench was a sign that said, and I kid you not, "Do not leave children unattended on benches as injuries may result."  I may not have the words exactly right, but that is certainly close.

     I'm not sure if that is as bad as the "This beverage you are about to enjoy is very hot" labels on take out coffee cups (are the people who get coffee in the restaurant in a mug smarter and therefore don't need the helpful message?), but it's in the ballpark.  First of all, why are these benches more dangerous than the hundreds of other objects that unattended children can hurt themselves on?  Secondly, is this sign going to really change anyone's behaviour?  I don't know why, but these types of signs really bug me.

     Okay, I feel better now that I got that off my chest.  Time for a story...

     When I was a youngster of about ten, a friend of mine had one of those cool banana seat bikes with the three speed gearshift.  He let me borrow it and I was so enthralled with the gearshift that I was looking down at it for a little too long.  I ran right into the back of a parked car.  Now why wasn't there a damn sign on the gear shift saying to keep your eyes on the road.

15 comments:

  1. How about a sign on the navigation table of all ships that says "no sitting or laying on this table when you are in control of this vessel

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  2. Yes, yes! How patently obvious does signage need to be? What happened to common sense? Shades of Idiocracy!

    The sign that bugs me the most, although I may catch flak for this one, is the ubiquitous "Baby on Board" sign. It smacks of "we procreated, so our family's lives are much more important than yours" superiority. Yes, mister/lady, I was actually contemplating ramming your car, but oh!--now that I see that you have a BABY ON BOARD--I will have to reconsider. Because, you see, if you hadn't loudly trumpeted the existence of your offspring (as you so helpfully did), I would have just assumed you were another one of those pathetic, expendable childless losers.

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  3. Little Jackie ShowersApril 2, 2009 at 3:32 PM

    Ouch, looks like we struck a gusher with loyal follower Lisa. I do agree though, and when I procreated I did not partake in the "Baby on Board" signs. I am surprised that someone hasn't taken on a line of similar signs to make light of the "Baby on Board" sign.

    Signs such as:
    "Pathetic Expendable Childless Loser on Board" might be big sellers.
    or
    "Grumpy Old Man on Board",
    "Virgin with potential to procreate one day on board".

    The possibilities are endless.

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  4. My fav' sign was one at the end of a desert road near Borrego Springs, in big letters it just said,"END". I hope to soon be able to purchase an " I Don't Believe" sign to show my negative feelings towards the upcoming Olympics. My other fav' sign is on the back of my vehicle it says " live in the present" my philosophy for sure! Well done colleague, xelA.

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  5. LOL! I totally want a "Pathetic Expendable Childless Loser on Board" sign.

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  6. I have a child (and a darn cute one) and I HATE the Baby on Board signs - in fact it makes me want to ram into the back of the car.

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  7. Isn't it weird how people interpret things differently? I always thought those "Baby on Board" signs were only purchased by anally retentive, worry wart parents? Thank goodness 20 years ago when my kids were toddlers this wasn't an issue!We had to remember to strap kids into there booster seat, probably against the law now, and I rarely remembered to do that!Yes I was an entertaining, but somewhat negligant parent. Yikes Jack, I've commented twice here! Shit and I thought this was silly! Cheers, xelA.

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  8. This blog rocks. It's funny, I automatically assumed (rightly) that its followers who are parents, many of whom I know, would not have used the Baby on Board signs because they're way too smart/cool/generally awesome for that. Being comfortable enough to rant freely really does depend on knowing [trusting] your audience. Man, this blog is my new Metafilter.

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  9. While I agree those baby on board signs are obnoxious, I also agree that childless people are
    pathetic, expendable losers.

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  10. Of course, five years ago, Guy would have been a charter member

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  11. And I would have been the first to admit it.

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  12. oh, and a favourite sign of mine is the BC Hydro warning sign that shows a victim of eloctrocution inside of the standard verboten symbol (you know, the red circle with a diagonal line through it) with a lightning stroke replacing the normally straight red line. It is as if they are accusing us of WANTING to get ourselves eloctrocuted, and they are telling us they will not allow it.

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  13. Just read an interview in the Star-Telegram with comedian Ron White. It fits this post:

    One of your bits is about a public service ad campaign reminding parents not to shake their babies. Are Americans so dumb that they need such reminders?

    It does sometimes seem like we’re getting dumber by the minute. Like the signs in public bathrooms where there are baby-changing stations: 'Do not leave baby unattended.’ Like you’re going to put your baby up there and walk off!

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  14. I once caught my son when he fell off a change table. I got him just before he hit the ground. It was a shoestring catch.

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  15. This doesn't have to do with signs, but with catching babies. On a flight back from Japan, I was seated next to a dad with a little baby. No mom. Actually, there was a seat between us. It was lights-out time and people were sleeping, including father and child. I wasn't. At one point, I could see the baby teeter and then started to fall. I reached over and down and grabbed him just before he hit the floor. I felt like a hero.

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