Tuesday, May 23, 2006

what's your sign?

Here's a collection of funny (and thought-provoking) signs from my recent trip to Beijing.

I didn't use this particular restroom in the Forbidden City, but maybe I should have. It was possibly the first and last 4-star toilet I'll ever come across.


The huge Olympic count-down clock in Tiananmen Square.
It seemed like there was Olympics stuff everywhere in Beijing, even in 2001 when I was studying there. Well, now that the Olympics is only 2 years away, you'd be hard-pressed to walk a block in the city without being bombarded with Beijing Olympics 2008 slogans. We visited a secondary school in Beijing, and they'd actually worked the Olympics into their curriculum. I noticed a list of the day's classes written on a blackboard in one classroom, and was surprised to see "Olympic" as the final subject, after English and Politics. This is a sign board right outside of that school. In case you find the picture difficult to read, the message is written below:

Excercise an hour a day. Work in good health.
Taste the joys of the happy life all your life.
Affection with the Olympic Games.
Accompanied with civilization and courtesy.


I found this sign on a railing around a statue in the Summer Palace.

The infamous speaking cellphone.

A little known fact that smoking is prohibited on the Great Wall. I say "little known", because I came so close to getting a shot of a guy smoking right in front of this sign... would have been funny, but not exactly unusual in China.

After descending from the heights of the Great Wall, many in our group enjoyed a serving of refreshing mashed snow cream.
Stay tuned for some non-sign pictures very soon!

3 comments:

ryan said...

"Excercise an hour a day. Work in good health.
Taste the joys of the happy life all your life.
Affection with the Olympic Games.
Accompanied with civilization and courtesy."

It may just be that I've been reading too much Da Vinci Code, but I swear, there's more to these words than meets the eye. Consider the following anagram which reveals an altogether much darker message:

Why echo, treacherous dixieland kangaroo?
Yell, healthy joey! Affiliates poop furthest!

Wee, mythical photogenic mastiff,
Paw damnation - civilize chaotic countryside.

What seems like a healthy, life-affirming message is actually a call to action for China's reclusive fantasy beasts of lore.

Make your time.

ryan said...

To dispel any notions that I am some sort of freaky anagram genius, I am not. I used a cool computer program to find those anagrams.
http://www.trevorrow.com/anagrams/

michelle said...

consider all such notions dispelled.