Definitely Dead or Alive

[Picture of Bin Laden CNN TV Banner tagline]EVEN TV NEWS BROADCASTS CAN BE STUPID.

Just look at the picture I was sent.  Apparently a news broadcast was videotaped, and the banner heading noticed on playback.  It was quickly rewound and a digital photograph snapped to preserve the moment forever as a testimony to the general stupidity currently prevalent.

As ever, please click on the picture to enlarge. If you cannot see the picture for some reason, the headline is “HUNT FOR BIN LADEN” and the tagline is “EXPERTS AGREE: AL QAEDA LEADER IS DEAD OR ALIVE”.

Thank goodness for experts. Happy New Year, and may things start to get better in 2008!

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Suicide on Hold

SUICIDE IS POPULAR ON BIG BRIDGES. As a result, there are emergency life-saving floats and rings as well as emergency telephones.

[Picture of a Samaritan phone out of order on American bridge]In the USA, they also have special Samaritan telephones — phones to talk people out of suicide. Now, I don’t know about you, but my thinking is that if someone went to a bridge to kill themselves, they would not be very likely to pick up the phone for help at that stage.

Just as well, too, because I have received a picture of one of these special hotline-helpline telephones, with a sign saying it is out of order! Click on the Picture to enlarge.

Let’s hope things stop getting worse in 2008!

MIND BLOWING?

[Picture of Shawlands arcade community noticeboard notice about mind blowing prices]IF MY MIND DOES NOT “BLOW”, is this a breach of the Trades Descriptions Act?

The sign on the community notice board inside Shawlands Shopping Centre states:

 

“THE KIOSK
Now Open
Bigger & Better
than before
More variety
At prices that are
MIND BLOWING”

Please click on the picture to enlarge.

This also begs the questions (1) is a “mind blowing price” cheap or expensive? Good or bad? and (2) Is having one’s mind blown something one ought to desire?

PUBLIC NOTICE: Cat Came Home!

[Picture of Shawlands arcade community noticeboard notice about lost cat]A LOST CAT to many people, is like a missing person; they put up notices all over town in the hope that someone will find and return their family pet (preferably alive).

In Shawlands, we have become used to seeing this sort of thing because the area is densely populated. The posters have increased in sophistication over the years, from a photocopy of a cat picture and a handwritten plea, through the computer printout inside a plastic sleeve, to a laminated full colour computer printout with fancy fonts and a high definition digital picture of the escaped beloved animal.

I must confess that while I may look over these notices on lampposts, shop windows and noticeboards — and while I may even glance at all the cats wandering the streets, I have never managed to connect the two. It would be extremely unlikely for me to look at a cat on the street and recogise it as the missing tiddles!

Just as well too, because otherwise I would forever be stealing (or attempting to catch) stray cats — and if what I had found was the wrong cat then this would lead to yet more “Lost Cat” posters in a never-ending loop!

So I have always thought it unlikely that they work — even if a reward were offered. There must be some etiquette, some cut-off period for taking down the posters.

  • I suppose I thought that either the cat returned home by itself or it didn’t (and was deemed dead).

Imagine my surprise to see the birth of a new trend — the NEWS UPDATE on the Missing moggie poster — just in case this missing cat was keeping you awake at night.

This is a new breed of poster — notifying us all of a positive outcome — so we can finally stop hunting! How kind and thoughtful — instead of simply taking down the sign and throwing it in the bin. Click on the picture to enlarge.

But then, maybe it is a lie — maybe someone with a black felt-tip pen has decided to ruin the hunt for Millie by mischievously adding to the print out. I will keep an eye out to see if the other posters have this update!

The world is getting madder by the day, I tell you!

Kiddie Speed Camera Fun!

[Picture of Safety Cam Car children’s ride]IN SHAWLANDS ARCADE THEY ARE BRAIN-WASHING CHILDREN; they have removed the Stuart Little ride, and replaced it with an abomination — a SPEED CAMERA CHARACTER RIDE! This is not simply weird, but tantamount to an attempt to brain-wash pre-school children!

Such mechanised rides have been around for years — a mum would put in 20p or 50p and watch while their toddler was gently tilted back and forth to a loud signature tune.

[Picture of Safety Cam Car children’s ride]It has always been a boat, train, truck or car theme — something the kiddies know and identify with — like Thomas The Tank Engine, Fireman Sam, or something from Disney — but this is nothing like that; this is a complete departure.

This is not about enjoying a ride in Postman Pat’s van, or speeding through outer space in a skyrocket.

  • This is a ride about DRIVING SLOWLY IN A BUILT-UP AREA!

How messed up is that? It also seems to be about driving INTO speed cameras, as evidenced by the pictures (click to enlarge as ever) — I did not know that that was a problem.

Look, Nanny State — we KNOW we are not supposed to break the speed limit, but this doesn’t exactly fire up the imagination does it? Things are definitely getting worse when this comes to pass.

(By the way, there was a queue for the Santa Sleigh ride, but not for the Safety Cam Car — wonder why!) — Merry Christmas!

Flaked off

INFORMATION ON FOOD PACKS ARE SUPPOSED TO BE USEFUL.

The responsibility shifts from the shop and the manufacturer to the consumer and purchaser; you have been told what’s in the food, so it’s up to you from them on.

OK, well, how come I was in Tesco the other day, and I wanted to base my buying decision on amount of fat, calories, and so forth. I needed the information to compare between brands of cornflakes… however there were two sizes of a well-known cornflake brand — and the nutritional information was different — how come? It’s the same brand, the same product, surely the only difference was the size of the box?

So I took out my camera to prove it — see for yourself. Click pictures to enlarge.

[Picture of nutritional information on cornflakes packet][Picture of nutritional information on cornflakes packet]

One has Fat at 0.3g and less than one per cent of daily amount, the other has Fat at 0.3g and zero percent!

One has Saturates at a Trace and less than one percent of the daily amount, while the other has Saturates at 0.1g and zero per cent, and only one of the boxes had Iron!

This is a single example (I cannot walk round a supermarket taking pictures) that can serve to illustrate the point that the information creates dubiety and uncertainty. Things are getting worse!

The Slippery Slope

SLIPPING SEEMS TO BE A WIDESPREAD PROBLEM — so why don’t shops have better floors?

[Picture of slippy floor shop sign]I saw a daft notice on a shop window today. It states:

‘PLEASE NOTE

During wet conditions, excess water from prams
and umbrellas can make this floor very slippy,
whist (sic) every effort is being made to keep this
as dry as possible please wipe your feet, leave
umbrellas in the container provided and

PROCEED WITH CARE

Thank You’

Apart from the bad grammar and the typo on ‘whilst’, I could not find an umbrella container! The floor was polished glossy shiny tiles and looked slippery when dry. They actually were ‘wet look’ tiles!

The question is: why? — and ‘why should we put up with this silliness?’

[Picture of a wet floor sign][Picture of slippery floor sign]Leaving the shop, it didn’t take me long to come across a ‘CAUTION – WET FLOOR’ board, because — let’s face it — we live in a country with high rainfall!

Maybe I am slow on the uptake, or a “bit thick”, but is it good enough to simply put up a sign? Does that mean the responsibility for slipping is transferred onto the victim? Should a person who slips be responsible as a result of being told about the risk or hazard? Perhaps I am supposed to change my footwear to something suitable to the conditions posted in signs?

Why is the floor wet? If we are talking about cleaning, could that not be done out of hours? If it is cleaning up an incident, then would it not be better to rope off the area or to actually DRY IT?

Architects ought to be taken out and shot for specifying such insane floor surfaces anyway — and things are getting worse because every shopping mall is filled with hi-gloss tiled finishes and these caution boards (what an eyesore), yet not everyone wears rubber-soled trainers. The entire floor of the new Silverburn shopping centre mall and shops (for example) make it difficult and exhausting to walk about!

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