FEEL like being patronised, terrified or treated like an imbecile for no good reason? Don’t worry, these grating signs can be found in any populated area.
‘Thieves operate in this area’
You’re about to tuck into your panini outside a coffee shop when you spot this sign designed to make you paranoid every time someone brushes past. Are they watching you now? Will they stab you for a toasted sandwich? More to the point, if thievery is so f**king common, why haven’t the police got the area under surveillance? Maybe they should spend less time on WhatsApp and a bit more protecting your iPhone.
‘Caution: Hot water’
It seems to be an important tradition of old buildings that the only tap in the loos should produce scalding hot, unusable water. Rather than get it fixed, they’ve put up a sneering sign so they’re not liable when you end up in A&E with third-degree burns on your palms.
‘Please wash your hands’
Even before national health crises, you – an adult – would frequently walk into pub toilets and see this patronising sign above the sinks. It still boils your piss, because: (A) you are washing your hands, that’s why you can see the f**king sign; (B) you have some decorum and are not scum, thank you very much; and (C) any filthy beast who doesn’t wash their hands after using the toilet is unlikely to change their vile behaviour.
‘No ball games’
This killjoy sign ruined countless days as a child, and continues to send a feeling of fury through you every time you see it perched smugly above the only decent patch of grass within a mile radius. No wonder kids are all inside playing Fortnite and cancelling each other.
In some cases, there’ll be a little walkway demarcated on the road for you to walk on when they’ve closed the pavement. In others, they whack up this sign and you’re on your own, having to either walk into traffic or cross to the other side to avoid being crushed by a bus. But frequently it warns you of clearly visible bright yellow barriers around a hole that will take you all of three seconds to walk around. That was well worth paying Council Tax for.
A recent phenomenon, but one that still makes you seethe with inner rage, especially when the coffee shop is otherwise empty and you’re the only person providing them with trade. A sign saying ‘No wanking’ you could understand, but now you feel like doing just that as a protest, admittedly one that will be a bit difficult to explain to the police, but they should be catching those thieves operating with gay abandon in the earlier sign.