Signs. They really are such a great indicator of how an country thinks or acts. I remember seeing a sign at an airport in Central America somewhere – all the others signs were in four languages, but this was only in English. And what did it say, I hear you ask.
“Please do not urinate against this wall”
Only written in English remember, not the three other languages everywhere else. Fairly clear who they’re trying to target there then.
Although as I type that, it seems unlikely I saw that in Central America, the home of the quick toilet break near a wall… seems much more likely I saw it in Europe, where my adopted countrymen have an unfortunate and well deserved reputation for such things. Must look through the Scully archives and see if I can find more information… hmmm, perhaps I’m having my first senior moment. Oh dear.
But I digress. Signage generally is such a rich seam of culture I’m sure I’ll return to it time and again. But on this particular occasion I’d like to discuss littering signs.
He who litters opens evils door”
I saw this particular gem on the side of a mosque in Mamallapuram near Chennai.
What made it even sweeter was that directly below the sign was a group of people selling coconuts, ice apples and jack fruit. All of which make huge piles of waste as the fruit is extracted.
Though on reflection, perhaps the sign was a rather pointed reminder to these very people – the undercurrent being ‘we can see you there, wedging open evils door, right in the sight of god, and here’s a little sign to remind you of that very fact.
This sign is an older post that has been retro fitted into the regular Signage Sunday series, where I indulge my obsession for all things sign related (and, I confess, occasionally, a few things that aren’t sign related as well – but it is mostly signs, and mostly Indian signs at that).
If you’d like to read more check out these vaguely related posts
Or look at the complete list of Signage Sundays.
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