Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Lawn Signs and Rapid Transit in London Ontario

Some lawn signs annoy me. Especially the generic, preachy kind like this:

or even

I mean, really? This is just anonymous finger wagging in lawn sign form. I know when I am driving and I see these, I feel angry at being scolded for a crime somebody is presupposing I'm likely to commit. When I'm angry, I lose my sense of propriety and drive like a jerk. In fact I drive like NOTHING lives there, or more accurately like the inhabitants of the neighbourhood (pets included) all belong to the hordes of undead who live in my mind ever since zombies became so popular again. Just keep moving, I say to myself, praying that I won't have to squish any of them under my wheels... oh god, when will I be able to stop running, stop driving like a maniac, stop the carnage? But I digress. Let's get back to sunny days and brighter thoughts, shall we?

These signs have led me to one of my favourite conceits, that of getting a bunch of signs printed and planting them next to the preachy ones in the dead of night...

Mrs. Rantwick has forbidden me from taking any such action.

However, as with many annoying things, I'm guessing lawn sign messaging began in a well-meaning way, like communicating your support for this or that politician, or of course for advertising your yard sale:

I don't know what it is like where you live, but lawn signs in my city have begun to cover lots of individual political issues, as well. Here are some I've seen around town lately:

This post isn't about any of these issues, but my reaction to these, from left to right, are "OK I guess... Whatever", "Umm, why?" and "Hell no, I love those things!"

Thanks for staying this long into this post, btw. We're finally getting to the rapid transit part. Recently lawn signs about the City's plans for a BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) system have been springing up everywhere.

The pictures are so crummy (and accompanied by a clear graphic) because they are just grabbed out of my helmet cam video... I was to lazy to stop and take proper pictures.

Sadly, the green signs are badly outnumbered by the red ones. I say sadly because I am a big fan of big transit. I think it is probably more important to creating livable cities than (gasp) bicycles, and it saddens me to see so many fighting it. Some say that the push back is not so much against the idea, but the current plan. To that I say let the experts be the experts... planners don't always crush it, but they sure as hell know more about implementing such systems than I do. I'm guessing they also know more than the average lawn sign protester. For myself, I've put my name on the list to receive a green sign, and intend to participate in lawn sign democracy for the first time ever.

Yer Pal,

PS - When searching lawn sign images, I saw this. I really liked it, so maybe you will too:

PPS - At time of publication (May 3), a big RT public participation meeting is scheduled at 4 PM, Bud Gardens. You should go!


anniebikes said...

What bothers me the most is the bombardment of lawn signs. Every issue has a lawn message. I'd like to wander neighborhoods and admire flowers and plants and not be distracted by sprouting words.

RANTWICK said...

Heard, Annie. Normally, same here.

John said...

Cool post, glad to see you participating. Quite possibly the only thing lower than lawn sign democracy could be bumper stickers. =) guilty on both counts and I'm not going to mention the the signs in the car parked in the lot for all to see. =)

Norton said...

I have mixed feelings about the newish term-meme 'virtue signalling' but some of these signs are an example.

RANTWICK said...

John: I'm not against signs (or bumper stickers) as a form of free speech, pointing out support for specific issues or people; it's these signs that are examples of 'virtue signalling' that bug me. Thanks for the link anon, it was worth following for me, having never heard that term before.

cafiend said...

I have great sympathy for people who have to put up with sociopathic drivers ripping past their homes. I was tempted to drop a few strategically placed railroad ties along my road, far enough from my own frontage for plausible deniability. I thought better of it. I won't come down on anyone plaintively attempting to communicate with intelligent life with an automated beacon.

RANTWICK said...

Cafiend - That is a point well taken. I guess I'm just easily annoyed by the "preachy" style. I don't think a simple "Slow Down" sign would bug me... I don't think.

cafiend said...

The signs tend not to work on the selfish pricks driving like they're filming a chase scene, either. Hence my consideration of railroad ties.

Steve A said...

None of those signs say they really ENJOY your blog. THAT is their singular failure! Still, the tiny grass sign is appealing compared to all the rest...

Post a Comment