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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Signs of the Times-


Just back from a semi-weekend on the lake in Maine which featured lobsters, clams, beer and about 25+ family members. While driving down and back I started noticing the road signs the states put up on their highways. Maine's "welcome" sign is simple and to the point:

"Maine. The Way Life Should Be".

Maine's idea of how life "should be" is brought into stark focus 50 yards later (and every half-mile thereafter) by signs that urge drivers to "watch out for moose".

Oddly, my vision of the Ideal Life has always included wine, women, song, and Boston Red Sox World Series wins every year, but it has never included moose running amok on the interstate.

That could just be me, though.

Moose crossing the highways are a problem in Maine (and here in Western Massachusetts as well) because your average moose is 1,500 pounds of mooseburger, with a brain the size of a walnut, perched atop four tall, skinny, stilt-like legs. At night their body is above the area lit by your headlights until it's too late. And then, well...

Memo to compact car drivers: Moose don't bounce.

New Hampshire has big signs when you enter the state that declare "Driving with Courtesy is the New Hampshire Way". I assume that is some sort of joke, because the only way New Hampshire drivers can be considered courteous is if they are compared to Massachusetts drivers. To put it another way- in Maine drivers watch out for moose on the highway. In New Hampshire an approved method of hunting deer is to roll over one at 80 mph in your pickup truck.

New Hampshire has another clever set of signs on their highway-

"Don't Drink and Drive"

invariably followed 50 yards later by-

"New Hampshire State Liquor Store - 1 Mile"

Back in Massachusetts, we have a fairly tame "Welcome to Massachusetts" sign greeting drivers, though rumor has it that a certain Presidential campaign has offered the state big bucks to repaint the signs to say "Welcome to Massachusetts. Mitt Romney never really liked it here".

I'm sure there are other good highway signs out there. What do you all have?

15 comments:

Mike said...

Because Michigan borders Ohio, and Ohio has a stupid speed limit, there is a big problem when Ohio drivers enter Michigan. They tend to want to drive way too slow.

We don't have this sign in Michigan, but I wish we did.

Ohio Drivers: Keep Up, Or Stay Home.

Colonel Colonel said...

Mike- "Move It or Lose It" ?

Phoebe Fay said...

Down by Colorado Springs, we have The Ronald Reagan Highway, right near the sign to the Focus on the Family Visitor's Center.

*sigh* Maybe I should put up a sign that says "Colorado - We're not ALL right-wing whackos, honest!"

Colonel Colonel said...

Phoebe- "Colorado- It's Not Just for Whackjobs Anymore" ?

Colonel Colonel said...

On the other hand, traffic reports must be cool- "And out to the west, Ronald Reagan is totally backed up this morning, as usual".

AngryMan said...

So, let me get this straight, the way life should be is cold as fuck and nine months of ass-cold winter? No thanks, I'll stay in the South, where all the women are pretty and know their place.

Colonel Colonel said...

Angryman- I LOVE that dress. I've been a fan of that fashion statement for the last six hours or so, since I first saw it.

I did a post about Maine, but Blogger fucking ate it, and Flaming Babe (aka, FB, aka, my wife) wants her dinner, and the Sox-Yankees game is getting interesting, so it will all have to wait 'till tomorrow.

Joey Polanski said...

Down by th Mexcan bordr, Im sure th sign says: No habla ingles? No problema!

Catalyst said...

We used to have one that said "Don't Californicate Arizona" but I haven't seen it for awhile.

Cissy Strutt said...

Well, this made me laugh. I'm childish that way.

Sara Sue said...

Still cracking completely up at Cissy's sign!

Never seen on an actual road sign, but on many-a-car: "Welcome to California, Now Go Home!"

Malach the Merciless said...

My Favorite NH signs are the Moose Crossing Signs, that underneath have a smaller sign that says

"Hundred of Collisons"

NH is fun, the are few laws.

Colonel Colonel said...

Joey- probably, but on our side of the border they speak Texan, and nobody can understand what the hell they're sayin' anyway.

Catalyst- That's a great one!

Cissy- As is that. I wish we had more dented saints lying around here. Maybe we do, and we just can't find them because somebody took all the signs down.

Sara- The California-Arizona border must be a fun place.

Malach- Welcome! Next time I'm up there and see one I'm going to add a sign underneath that says-

MOOSE: 7
CARS: 3

Lynn Wienck said...

I seem to recall that both Colorado and Arizona have "Watch for falling rocks" signs. In as much as the rocks are the size of small planets, it's unlikely that you will watch for them so much as be buried under them.
--------------
Other fun ones are tributes to known or unknown people, more or less along the lines of "George Washington passed though here."
"Who is George?"
"I don't know. I think he started that big chain steak house."
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Last are the signs for exits to major interstates the size of postage stamps and a mere 50 feet before the ramp. What was that again?

Colonel Colonel said...

Lynn- Here in Massachusetts another favorite trick they play with signs involves interstate highways, which are often (though not always) also state highways. Two different number systems. Hence, State Rte. 128 is also Interstate 95. The game the state and towns play is to alternate how they refer to the road on their signs. For instance, you may have been following signs for the last 6 miles that tell you "This way to Rte 95", but when you get to the final turn you will only see a sign that says "This way to Rte 128", and if you didn't know they were the same, you're outta luck.