Sunday, September 6, 2009

Silly Signs

In the time that we've been here, we've noticed some unusual signs, and we thought it would be fun to share some of them with you. We thought that Bryan's mom might especially enjoy these, since she has an interest in quirky signage. The plan is to keep collecting silly sign pictures so that we can try to post them regularly.

This first one is posted in the Buona Vista MRT station, where Bryan gets off to go to work. As you can see, there are lots of rules for riding the MRT, and there are pretty serious fines for breaking the rules. My favorite is the "no durian" restriction. Durians are a fruit and they're banned from the MRT because they really, really smell. They're usually sold already cut and sliced, and wrapped in saran wrap to keep the odor under control. We haven't tried them yet, but we have definitely caught a few whiffs of their distinctive aroma.
The next one is Bryan's favorite. He really gets a kick out of it, but I guess I don't quite get it. Anyway, a raised zebra crossing is a pedestrian crossing that's raised up like a speed bump. It's striped like a zebra too, hence the name. It is not, in fact, a crossing for wild zebras.The sign below says "CLIFF EDGE DANGER DO NOT GO BEYOND THIS POINT"
And, of course, that's me, going beyond that point. My favorite is the person flailing on the sign...the cliff really isn't that steep.
This one's one of my favorites. It's at Bukit Timah, where I study the monkeys. As I mentioned before, the monkeys often do get fed by humans, and it does make them more aggressive, which I learned the hard way the other day. I had wandered away from the monkeys to have some lunch. I walked far enough that I was sure they wouldn't notice me having a sandwich. However, I failed to spot the big male (the monkey that we call Stumpy due to his irregularly short tail. He's second in the male dominance hierarchy) that had silently stalked along with me. As I pulled out my sandwich, he was suddenly right there, coming toward me and making aggression displays. I hid my sandwich behind my notebook and walked backwards with my eyes down (standard protocol for trying to avoid an aggressive monkey confrontation). He kept coming at me, and pretty soon, I was running backwards. I ended up scarfing down the sandwich and he left me alone once it was gone. I guess next time I'll be more careful to conduct a full-scale monkey search before trying to have a snack. Anyway, the sign is right- once the monkeys learn that people are food sources, they will get aggressive in an effort to get you to surrender your tasty treats.

This next sign kind of freaked us out the first time we saw it. Bryan and I were hiking at MacRitchie Reservoir when we saw a big fenced-in compound with this sign hanging on the fence. That was intimidating in itself, but nearby were some heavily armed military men, and that made us a lot more wary. Since then I've seen the sign in lots of places, and I don't think it's scary anymore; although, I certainly won't be trespassing in any of these areas.
The urination sign is in the stairwell of an HDB complex near ours. I saw the sign one day when I was walking to the MRT station, and I walked up to get a picture of it. Hilariously enough, on the steps near the sign was a big wet puddle. I'm not sure if it was pee, but I'm guessing that there's a good chance that it was.
The next one is a street sign that we found by the riverside. Yay Canton! It was nice to see a reminder of home, even on the other side of the world (Canton, OH is my hometown).This picture was taken at a beauty parlor at a bus station (bus stations and MRT stations have a lot of weird services). My niece's name is Bella, so I thought this sign was just perfect. And finally, this sign is our building. Home, sweet home! This picture and the zebra crossing picture were taken with our snazzy new camera, so the quality is way better. I'll still be posting pictures taken from the old cameras because I'm behind on the blogging, but pretty soon I'll have some more of these crisp, high-quality photos instead of the grainy ones from my sand-filled camera.


  1. hello, chanced upon yr blog & was very impressed. Very informative & loads of nice pictures of Singapore. It's weird, cos many of us, locals, seem to take things for granted and reading yr blog is like getting to know my country again!!
    btw, try visiting Macritchie reservoir trail (all the way to/from thomson, SICC club) early in the morning, u might be able to see the beautiful (but highly venomous of cos) Malayan Blue Coral snake. I saw it a few times, while walking along the board walk.

  2. Thanks so much, Wee Kiat. It always make me feel good when Singaporeans enjoy the blog. As a foreigner here, I think it's easy to enjoy S'pore and to always find new things to do, but if I'd grown up here I'm sure I'd take a lot of the things for granted. We'll definitely check out the reservoir trail in the morning- we love snakes!! Thanks for the suggestion : )