Normative Signs: The Poetry of "Ought"

In which the author finds beauty in how people tell other people what to do.

Massive Passive Aggression

This is one of the more passive-aggressive normative signs I’ve ever seen. Truly beautiful.

It’s posted at a store called Teatro Verde in Toronto.

It almost takes passive aggression to a new level. Almost effusively polite, but quite clearly laying down the law.

You can almost hear it in your head: “Kids? Why yes we LOVE kids. As long as they’re on a leash. And oh, look! You’ve got ice cream. How lovely. You really, really should enjoy the sun out on the sidewalk while you finish that. No, please, we insist.
Keep_Kids_Close
Thanks to Nancy Walton for ignoring this sign’s final rule in order to snap this photo.

No Fishing, You Fishers

Klingers_Lake_2Position in life, as they say, is everything.

This “No Fishing” sign is posted at Klinger’s Lake in Michigan. In addition to being the quintessential rustic “No Fishing” sign, this sign is also charmingly off-target.

It is apparently intended to forbid fishing from the dock. But as you can see below, it is much better positioned to broadcast its message at the entire lake, and at passing boats — from which fishing is definitely not at all prohibited.


Thanks to Abe Schwab for the photo.