Let’s Use Words

Pretty much all the road signs used to be words that people could read. Then, for a variety of reasons such as accommodating the illiterate, the non-English speakers, and the hard-of-sight, road signs began to be produced with no words – just symbols.

However, symbols can be more ambiguous than words. Here are some of the most interesting road signs, according to me:

Warning: Striped Cigarette Nearby

road sign showing a pictograph of pavement ends and dirt road begins

This is supposed to mean that the pavement ends and the road turns to dirt. That is not the first thing I think when I see this sign.

Warning: Two Lanes Become Closer Together

road sign showing a pictograph of one lane getting closer to the other lane

This is supposed to mean that the right lane ends and only the left lane continues, so the driver is supposed to merge into the left lane. But does this sign really show that? No! At the bottom of the sign are two lanes, and at the top of the sign are two lanes. Nowhere does the one lane merge into the other lane. I find this sign to be especially misleading.

Warning: Stop Sign is in That Direction


Warning: Stop Sign is Rising

road sign showing a pictograph of stop sign ahead

True story: when these signs first started appearing, I actually stopped at them because I was so well trained to stop at a red octagon. When I realized that it was a “stop ahead” sign, not a stop sign itself, I became annoyed at them. I still don’t like them. And almost as bad as these signs are the “AHEAD STOP” warnings painted on the road itself.

Your adversaries have roared in the midst of Your meeting place; They have set up their own standards for signs.

Psalm 74:4

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This little article thingy was written by Some Guy sometime around 6:07 am and has been carefully placed in the Ponder category.

One Response to “Let’s Use Words”

  1. Ricky Anderson Says:

    “No right turn on red.”

    In a tiny sign.

    Across the intersection.

    Jana pointed this out to me at an intersection I had been turning right on red at for years.

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