Give Me A Sign!..Preferably In Large Easy-To-Read-Font
by Gina Valley
I’ll tell you what we need in this country. We need more signs. Clear. Legible. Specific signs. And lots of them.
People want to know stuff. And, the smaller the people the more stuff they want to know, causing them to ask bigger people who are trying to drive the van. The bigger people then have to apply their last two functioning brain cells to figure out what should not have to be figured out, when they really ought to be using those cells to stay in their lane and to watch out for low flying bats (First night of this trip, middle of the night, driving up the 5 in central California, a big bat flew right in front of my windshield. Either that or it was a low flying dog. Either way, l almost had a heart attack). That’s probably why we have so many freeway accidents. It’s not the lousy drivers; it’s a lack of proper signage.
It’s so beautiful to drive through miles of farmland, but what could be a relaxing pastoral experience is turned into a stressful quiz as little ones see the crops and ask, “What are they growing?” You can’t say that you don’t know because then the 2 year old wants to know why you don’t know and that discussion could take all day and more energy than a 6 pack of Red Bulls can give you.
So, you look out the window and size up the plant. After all, you eat. Surely you can identify food in its most natural state. But, let’s face it, if it’s not a grape vine or a fully loaded lemon tree you’re never gonna be able to figure it out.
You try though, right? This trip, in my sleep deprived, road-ragged state, I actually told a kid that the field we were passing full of large fluffy white puffs mixed in with the shiny green leaves was a field of poodle plants (I wonder if they’ve covered where puppies come from in school yet).
A simple sign could have prevented this travesty of information.
Trucks hauling giant things covered with tarps, or worse yet not covered, have nearly caused me to drive off the road several times this week. Once because I was so focused on trying to see through the little gap in the tarp, and twice because I thought anything would be better than hearing “What is that?” one more time.
A simple sign. That’s all I’m asking for. “This is an axle for a tank.” “This is a bladder full of resin.” “This is a UFO. Shhhh! Don’t tell. It’s a secret.” Would that be so hard? I’m willing to buy the markers to make them.
Signs should be placed strategically to warn us of upcoming items of significance, such as stock yards. If we knew the smell was coming we could take some precautions, such as rolling up the windows and putting on gas masks. Twice on this trip, before we caught sight of the true source of the stench, we thought it was emanating from inside the van and opened the windows to air out the cabin. Although we instantly realized our mistake, we couldn’t get the windows up fast enough to keep from tasting that smell for the next 30 miles.
A simple sign. Just a few words. “Don’t breathe – Next 2 miles.”
Is that so much to ask?
Laugh Out Loud!
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