Dan's "Sign Collection"
(Newest entries are at the end...please scroll down!)
Updated Summer 2017

I have a sign collection. No, not a real one...I don't actually HAVE any signs...what i mean is, I take pictures of signs. Why? Throughout the years, I have run across various signs that strike me as funny, or silly, or incongruous...and I take a picture, to add them to my "collection."

It all started way back, in 1981, as I drove across Kentucky, and I saw this sign:

"Smashburger?" It seemed silly, so I took a photo, not realizing what I was starting...


Then, a little later on the same trip, in Kingsport, Tennessee, I saw this oddly unsettling sign...

What is "Sudden Service," anyway? We've all heard of prompt service, but "sudden?" Does that mean, just when you least expect it, you are startled by your server showing up with your food?

(Both of these chains, by the way, are apparently still in business!).

So, that's how I started my fateful quest to create a "sign collection."


There have, of course, been many missed opportunities through the years, too, when I didn't have a camera with me. They are still considered part of the collection, in a virtual sense:

  • On the door of my bank in Ohio: "Premise Alarmed." Why was it alarmed? Was it frightened...perhaps by some "Sudden Service?"

  • In front of a bank in Boston: "Electrically Heated Sidewalk." Um, O.K., but why bother with the sign? If the sidewalk is clear of ice and snow, isn't that sort of self-evident?

  • An advertisement for a new housing community in the Maryland suburbs of Washington DC: "Homes In The Trees." I would have expected, say, "Homes in the Woods," or the like...this makes it sound like treehouses, or living with the monkeys...

  • On an exhibit at the Smithsonian Museum of History and Technology: "Boring Machine." And so it was, actually...

  • And then, there were the signs all over the beaches where we would vacation as a family as I grew up, telling us not to picnic there...the word, by the way, is spelled "picnicking"...the signs all said, "NO PICNICING." So of course, to this day, our family will talk about going "Pick - nice - ing!"


This one has always been a favorite from 1982 (yes, that's Dan in the photo, as a young ROTC cadet):

1,500 nuclear missiles delivered? Remember, an ICBM is called a "delivery system." So...who were they "delivered" to? Russia? China? Did they explode like they're supposed to? Did World War Three happen, and I wasn't paying attention?


Some more recent additions to the collection:

When I took Anne and some friends to the Six Flags Over Georgia amusement park, I saw this:

How do they do that? I half expected to see people flying through the air over my head, as if they were launched by an ejection seat...


This was funny to see on a play place at a Burger King...

So, how does that work? "Hey, Mister Manager? There's my little brother...and he's weird!"


Col Poole seems to have an entire sign collection of his own, at a barbecue place near Blue Ridge, Georgia...the hillside is covered with plywood pig signs, most with peoples' names...



Here's a local one that I like:

Well, where do they keep the moose in your town? Ours, apparently, is that way...

(By the way, I'm allowed to poke fun, because I am an active member of our local Moose Lodge...)


And then how about this...

Is it just me, or does this sound like an admission of failure?..."Yeah, we try...but it's hard...you military car buyers with no money are very difficult to understand..."


And we can't forget the welcome from Bass Pro Shops...

Scripturally, of course (see Isaiah 59:4) we all qualify...so everyone's welcome here!


This one needs a little explanation...on Robins Air Force Base, where I work, they have computerized notification of severe weather conditions – like heavy rain, strong winds, or lightning – but then came the day I saw this on my computer monitor...

Is this like saying that all weather is disapproved? Did someone not submit the right paperwork? What, exactly, will take the place of the weather?


In the category of "be careful what you write in wet cement," we have this one, from an entrance to the Miami Valley Shooting Grounds in Dayton, Ohio, where Allen and Dan enjoyed a day at the range...

If you look carefully, you'll see it says "SHOOING." Huh? Do they have an insect problem? Or does that mean, "If you're not here to shoot, go away – shoo!"


Dan (who is now, you remember, officially old) likes this one, seen in a local neighborhood:

Well, it's important for drivers to be watching out for us slow-moving old guys, too! (Dan, by the way, has a t-shirt from the Old Guys Rule collection...)


This one is actually a serious sign, along a cycling trail in Hilton Head, South Carolina...

...but, it's not every day that you see this warning as you ride your bike!


Dan saw this one in a yogurt shop in Hilton Head...

He saw this sign one day before his 51st birthday!


And, this one (at the same yogurt shop)...

...is, of course, self-explanatory!


While not strictly a sign, Dan was amused by this one: it's the label on a can of gunpowder he uses for reloading his .38 Special and .45 caliber cartridges.

Background: this gunpowder (called Trail Boss) is a fairly new product, introduced in 2005 (note that it says "New Technology Powder"). The funny part is the last line: "Preferred Powder of Sheriffs and Outlaws". Huh? "Outlaws??" I wonder what they're teaching people in marketing school...or are they just having fun with us?


Seen on a refrigerator, at a house in Maryland, where we went to a concert of Robin Bullock's.

True!


A couple of recent discoveries on Robins AFB, Georgia. First a brass plate found embedded in the pavement of a parking lot:

Um, o.k...but is it really worth commemorating with a brass plate?


And then, actually right next to the previous one, I saw this:

What, exactly, is an "Autorized Vehicle?" Most vehicles these days are automotive...unless this means no horses and buggies allowed?

(The funniest part is, it took me 13 years of working at the base before I noticed the misspelling...)


This was seen in a Marriott hotel, in their hotel directory book:

I'd call this an unfortunate juxtaposition of section titles...wouldn't you?


A friend sent us this one (thanks, Betsy!).

I guess it's good information to know...but aren't roads supposed to be designed NOT to do that?

A bumper sticker seen on Robins Air Force Base:

I agree! (Hooah!) ...and remember..."Peace Through Superior Firepower!" The sticker itself is from LaRue Tactical, a manufacturer of sniper rifles.


Along the same lines is this bumper sticker, seen in Fairborn, Ohio:

The "Ranger" emblem is the shoulder tab of the U.S. Army Rangers, our premier light-infantry special forces...so, at what they do...they ARE the very best!


And, also on the back of a car (we know this family):

Given the structure of the family (see the stickers in the upper left), the vanity plate makes sense. Can you think of a better name for a family van?


Here's my fortune! (from a Chinese restaurant fortune cookie):

Well, that sounds like fun!


In the "which part of 'No' don't you understand" department:

Is it really that hard to figure out?


Along the same lines as the weather cancellation above (this is an image from Gaye's iPad)...

What should we do when the weather quits? How will they "fix the problem?" By hiring some new weather, maybe?


So, is this a real thing?

A DOG WASH? (Spotted near our hotel in Huntsville, Alabama, in April 2016.)


It does seem real...

Just think – self-service dog washing, for only $5.00!


Traveling along the highway one day, Gaye and Dan saw this...

Even though they are names of two separate towns in Alabama, it makes a great euphemism for for our town of Warner Robins!


Another one in the category of "unfortunate juxtapositions," don't you think?

(This was found on a wall full of random items at the Golden Lamb restaurant in Lebanon, Ohio...but, still..."Eat faith?")
And, P.S...does the arrow signify the faith is found over there?


And this is an interesting apparent mash-up of cultures...

How would you even make a sushi burrito?



Thanks for reading!