Break Out the Parachute Pants, It’s Humor Time

The geopolitical landscape is pretty much a shit-show at the moment and I figured everyone might like a quick escape from the doom and gloom being peddled nonstop in the lamestream media. What better way to do that than roll out another episode of Fails in the Wild. Been a spell since my last one (link here) – eesh, just checked, a little over 2 years now. That just means I’ve have more options to choose from! So, turn away from the talking heads, thicken your skin (there is a good chance something might offend you in the name of a cheap laugh), grab a tasty adult beverage assuming you are old enough, toss some popcorn in the microwave, sit back and enjoy. Feel free span this post over multiple sittings as it turned out rather lengthy. Note, all complaints can be sent directly to our legal team who will respond once someone frees them from the locked closet.

There is no better fodder for public failure than signs. We all make “Engrish” mistakes from time to time – hell, I messed up on “threw” just a few posts ago. That, of course, doesn’t make us hesitate in the least when making fun of others hehehe. I do appreciate they at least tried to sound out the syllables in the high value Scrabble word they were trying to impress us with.

Now, credit is due to the above author. Americans (that is my current data pool) seem to have a problem when trying to go long distances in all capital letters. At some point in that string of letters they will revert to lowercase. Ron can attest, I enjoy playing the Where’s Lowercase Waldo. Personally been handwriting in all caps since my first high school computer language class and I still have to concentrate like Brandon trying to make out letters on a teleprompter to keep my fingers from taking the low route. Kudos on keeping it up (you know you want to laugh at that pun), but now let’s work on straight lines.

Saw the following sign at a state park during our January trip to Texas. Guess what place I do NOT need to be instructed to stay at LEAST 6 feet away! The fact they felt this might actually happen concerned me greatly.

Now that you know what you are in for, hit the jump to see the rest of the fails.

Before I go any further, I will declare I have a thing for bathroom signage. For one thing, in a 1st world country there should not be a need for 99.9999998% of the notes and signs I do see. I have said it once, I’ve said it twice and those who have spent any length of time around me know it will probably come up at least once a week – “Education Priorities”. Boys should not be allowed to go from 2nd grade to 3rd grade without completing a course on bathroom etiquette. I want a formal syllabus, pop quizzes, final exams complete with situational awareness orals in front of certified boards. For example, what urinal do you take if there are three available and you are the first person there – anyone choosing the middle option must be immediately pepper sprayed (and assuredly we have the first set of complaints coming into the legal hotline). Ladies/Girls, unless you are in Vegas and forced to use the men’s bathrooms, you can sit this course out.

Sometimes there is a sign that will brighten my day. Like this one. The missing screws did set off my OCD, but at least I smiled.

Then there are the ones that try to be funny. It doesn’t matter if you stick one of those stupid emoticons at the end, the imagery is downright horrifying. The final exam does cover courtesy flushes which would completely eliminate the need for this cringe.

I forget the name of the campground where I saw this gem. The standard blah blah blah now determined ineffective face covering sign was partnered with a rather cute social distancing perspective. To replace a completely arbitrary unit of measure like 6 feet with a single unit of a “cow”..bryyillliiiiieeennnt. Now the city-slickers might have to do some research in which case I would be more than willing to take them out on a late night cow tipping field trip.

Then there are the signs that can sneak up on you when you are not looking. You know, like the ones that hide in the grass and then pop up after you have left to make you look completely stupid. “Hey, what gives you the right! To put up a [sign] and keep me [off the grass].” Note both the sign to the left and right clearly state “DO NOT PARK ON GRASS”.

Apparently our current administration thinks there is nothing wrong with our supply chains. As long as the elites can get toys for their kids – let the rest eat cake (or ride a unicycle).

I kind of feel sorry for that last remaining bike. If I remember right, the unfortunate bike was relegated to the Land of Misfit Toys for being blue. On the other hand, the shit gets real when the ammunition aisle at the Bass Pro Pyramid in Memphis is completely wiped out. Let me guess, some low IQ politician recently squealed “common sense gun control” (while blathering on about defunding the police).

Was driving through the Florida Panhandle when we passed this sign. Barely had time to get my camera phone up and snap a shot. “I GOT MY WEINER WACKED AT THE WACKEDOUT WEINER.” Maybe it is just me, but that looks like blatant weiner abuse to me. Me: “Linda, did you see that cruel Daschund sign back there…!?!” Linda: “They weren’t talking about that kind of weiner.” Me: “Oh, umm, nevermind.”

We came into the Shreveport/Bossier City KOA at a rather late hour. Linda successfully found our reservation papers in the dark. Tired from the long trip, called it a night soon after we located our site. The next day we were greeted with this scene as we walked up to their general store.

Ever have one of those moments when you stop for a minute and ask yourself if you “made smart choices” – after your college years, of course ha. Now, I am for all things Halloween, but even this surprised me a bit as it wasn’t even fall yet.

If there was any doubt these were my kind of people, the statue missed in the darkness the night before sealed the deal. How cool would that look on my Haunted Halloween Trail!!!!

Before I could even get my mouth open Linda quite sternly put down any discussion of trying to bring it home with us.

If you thought that severed arm image was disgusting, you might want to just skip the next sign. Yes, back to the bathroom wall. Again, the exact campground this was located mistakes me at the moment (likely willful forgetfulness) – possibly Bensen Palms in Mission TX. This is one of those signs you read and then read again very slowly hoping something got obscured as it entered the optic nerve. The warning was hung on the stall wall directly behind the toilet. Imagine my hesitation to lift the seat up – the way it is written implied the offending scene was still there for the viewing – otherwise what scale should I be using – anyone, anyone?

Not sure what provided more relief – crossing the finish line at my last 50 mile race (link here) or finally getting the nerve to raise up the lid just enough to squint peek through to confirm the offending scene was cleaned up. Granted, I was now left clueless on what their decency “red” line was.

Jumping to another sign in the wild, this one at Quinta Mazaltan in McAllen, TX made me laugh out loud. Admittedly, there was a quick glance around to make sure no one actually saw me do that – we birders already get enough social flak, no need to give them more fuel in thinking we are loose from the asylum.

In case that is a little small to read, it says “WARNING BEWARE OF AGAPANTHUS. If ATTACKED, BACK AWAY SLOWLY.” Believe I heard what sounded like “Feed me Seymour”.

Okay, this next one is kind of at the expense of my wife and I will undoubtedly hear about it if she reads this. Think of it as my secret litmus test to see if she really does read my posts like she claims she does. Either she or her friend made this sign for an event they were hosting at their dog training club. If memory serves me right they were trying to comply with asinine Covid restrictions handed down by our tax evading governor and needed a way to channel traffic. After the three day event I showed up and noticed this sign. Somewhat shocked (and proud) of the crudeness I asked Linda how she picked THAT graphic. “Just thought it was a cute gremlin.”

Honey, did you stand back and LOOK at that for a second!?! I do not think that means what you think it does. Man, was that a good laugh. Almost as hilarious as when I saw this at Farm and Fleet. We were checking out their Toyland to get all the good nephews and nieces checked off our list.

The look in the eyes of the bottom one and the packaging with 2-in-1 Rockin’ Rider written on it just made the scene that much more hilarious. I guess that is one way to keep your inventories up hehehe

If you ask me, that store was hopping. Their little Bonnie the Llama was shaking her booty on the dance floor trying to get some of that Rockin’ Pony action. The Replacements movie just popped into my head. “Stop them from shaking their asses for two minutes!” – what a great movie.

… and in the category of gifts NOBODY needs, I present you with the Gotta Go Turdle.

Seriously Toy Manufacturers – WTF. What kind of person goes into a room full of executives and pitches this crap – literally CRAP.

Executive: “Tell me what exciting concepts you have come up with for all the money we pay you.

Designer: “We have this giant turtle, be we paint it purple, we put cute pin-striping on the shell and we name it Turdle.. you know, like purple and turtle – I thought of that one myself.”

Executive: “Clever, tell me more”

Designer: “Then we add technology that allows it to repeat everything you say back to you.”

Executive: “Liking what I am hearing so far, is there more?”

Designer: “Yes, hold on to your seats. Then we put it sitting on a toilet, paint an adorable purple poop icon on it and then… wait for it .. wait for it .. you feed it and it makes magic poop!”

Executive: [Blink, Blink, Blink]…”Holy shit, your ass is fired!”

Now that I think about it, apparently it went down a different way

Executive: [Blink, Blink, Blink]…”Holy shit, that’s a great idea, get it into production so we can have it in the stores by Christmas”

Worse yet, that isn’t even the most disgusting fail on today’s list. This was the hot dog they gave me at Costco the last time Linda and I ate there. Now tell me if this looks appetizing to you?

Time to do a quick finger count on their cooks. I did take a note of this as a great food item for our next Halloween party – add some ketchup, mix in some relish – yeah, I could make that work as long as Linda gives me the okay ha!

Ever have one of those moments when you wonder if it is just you that may not be right. Maybe somewhere along the way with all those Halloween props and ultra-runs something got mis-wired in the old brian.. I mean brain. This tends to happen to me more times that I care to admit. Maybe I just like to find the humor in things more than others. Thought I would throw in this Rorschach test to see if you can help me answer this quandary. What is your first reaction to this billboard we saw in a Texas border town.

Did you choose a pleasant, cheerful older Christian lady that wants to bring her charm to the people as their next governor?

How charming if you did. That isn’t at ALL what my first impression was. I saw a rebellious preacher’s daughter now former stripper with the stage name of Kandy Horn[y] who is financing her run for governor with the dollar bills she was showered with onstage Don’t believe me, look closer, she literally has dollar bills covering her cleavage and they purposely put that billboard in a place where there would be a pole in front of it as subliminal messaging. What can I say, I call it like I see it and I blame whoever came up with this marketing concept. I will reveal that Linda took the first option.

An article hit the lamestream media today. I didn’t bother reading beyond the headline, but the gist of it was filling station attendants are being overworked trying to keep the Brandon stickers off their pumps. Good luck with that, from what I can tell on our long vacation, there is an endless supply. I did see a new one that said “Putin gas in it”.

Speaking of gas stations, I found a sure-fire way that will guarantee Linda NEVER stops at your business – put one of these signs up at the entrance to your pumps. I think we left about a centimeter of rubber in their parking lot as she floored it out of there.

I am not sure what exactly this is supposed to convey, but my read is cruelly forcing your dogs to wear a leash is strictly forbidden – drop the barbaric collars and let them run free. Clearly our pups like me the best.

This car magnet is intriguing, potentially demented and equally horrifying, but clever nonetheless.

Okay, a quick backstory on this one. Two days before taking the shot below I was on a call with Ron regarding a potential gift for our mother. I had suggested she might like an air fryer and he was in Kohls picking one up. Unfortunately, he forgot his Kohls’ cash or something and needed to run back home to get it. There was only one fryer left so I recommended he put it in the lingerie section to reduce the risk of someone else taking it. We started joking about how it could be a win-win – he could meet someone who likes sexy lingerie while retrieving it or if they opted to take the fryer instead then he could try to find her as she definitely likes to cook and that would be nice as well. Trust me, this is probably one of the more normal conversations we’ve had hehehe. Anyway, two days later I was in Target looking for a gift for Linda when I came across this.

How is that for a juxtaposition? There’s definitely a lady out there that is worried about someone taking the last sexy bra and worst case wouldn’t mind going out with someone that could fix her car – or possibly she knows her husband too well and doesn’t want floor mats for Christmas again. In case you are wondering, Linda wasn’t too thrilled with her tire gauge – apparently she meant the kind of “pressure” that turns carbon into diamonds.

Sorry folks, we are ALL over the place with these fails. Just popping off the queue, where the wheel stops nobody knows. We initially tried to get gas at this Loves before deciding it was too busy to wiggle our RV into. Instead, we grabbed some food at a restaurant next door. As we passed by again, I noticed this bizarre scene. Thinking my eyes were deceiving me, I grabbed my phone and snapped a few shots. Zoomed in bit and sure enough, it was what I thought it was.

How is that for a travel companion!

And now back to the bathroom. This wasn’t as much funny as it was verbose. I felt like I had to take out a pen and create a to-do checklist just to be allowed to leave. Thinking this could have been summed up easier and perhaps save a tree with one tiny piece of paper

ITEMS LEFT BE TOSSED
EXITING, LIGHTS OUT, DOOR LATCHED
PROBS TELL MGMNT

Then there is the Dirty Harry approach “Do you feel lucky, punk?”.

Felt like Bender being confronted with additional days of detentions. You want another one? Yes! You got it, you got another one right there. That’s another one, pal. you through? Not even close, bud, good, you got one more right there….. one of the best damn the man moments in all of cinema.

In the revolving door of fails the next one comes from Galveston Island. We stayed at Sandpiper RV Resort for a few nights and this door was positioned between the RV sites and the bathrooms. At some point in my corporate career a wise mentor sent me a link about the Norman Door (link here). If you are in software or design roles, you MUST read up on Don Norman (link here). In fact, go ahead and do that now… I’ll gladly wait – it is that important. You didn’t did you, nope, just kept on going right past to look at the door pictured below.

Okay, so the core of the concept is to design things right which minimizes having to invest time in thinking about how to use it. Clearly no one at Microsoft has taken this to heart. Doors are a great example. If designed wrong, you can frustrate the hell out of people. Case in point the door above. You only put a handle on something if you need to pull it. Here, someone violated that principle which then required additional signage in an attempt to keep guests from ripping their arms off. Every single time I came to that door I pulled, Linda pulled it, Ron pulled it EVERYONE pulls it and then has rub their shoulder while wasting time to read the completely unnecessary sign. Solution – TAKE THE HANDLE OFF and life becomes one big sparkle pony of fun. Note, this same place had this sign on their ice machine.

My read – small coolers AND extra large/behemoth coolers are absolutely fine. Let’s try a little positivity and simply say “Feel free to fill your small coolers”. Ah, doesn’t that just feel better and is far more precise.

I am thinking the owners of this sign really meant to say TRASH BAGELS. I do like the fact extra dashes between tied up imply handcuffs.

Our next fail is a two-parter. As you have probably come to expect, it starts in the bathroom.

They even gave me a little smiley to brighten my day. Problem is they put it on the out direction of the door which officially puts it PAST point break. To top it off, I proceed to the exit of the roadside rest stop and I see this sign.

Granted, in an appropriate place if you need such a sign. I ask, wouldn’t it be a whole lot easier to put a sign at the entrance to the building that simply says “Don’t Kick Our Stuff!” (maybe add some humor to take the edge off “Or We Will Kick This Cute Poodle”) – who would want that to happen – problem solved.

Another pet peeve of mine (honestly, I’m a joy to be around, just ask Linda ha), are arrows. There are waaaaaay too many arrows in our life. If you don’t believe me, take a count of the number you encounter on any given day – absolutely staggering. Driving is hard enough trying to listen to the GPS, keeping a lookout for teenagers on their phones and the pending doom of wispy white hairs peeking out from below the steering wheel. Trying to decipher something like this scene during our trip to the Gulf Shores is a recipe for disaster.

Then you have this jumbled mess. My take, prepare for the Soup Nazi experience.

Besides the annoying arrow to tell you where the neon open sign is, the arrow arrangement in the middle indicate you are about to go into an infinite loop (Hey look kids, there’s Big Ben and there’s Parliament). Almost as bad as the signage on a second level of a casino parking deck. Follow those arrows literally and you’d plummet to your death over the side.

We can do better people, we just need to use our brains during the design phase. Luckily we have just the person we can hire.

Well, I have come to the end of my fail queue. Hope you enjoyed my small attempt to add a bit of humor into your day. If nothing else, maybe some things to look for while you are out in the wild or a warning to go ahead and give that sign a final read through before slapping it on the wall.

Take care! (Oh, and somebody should let those lawyers out of the closet – they will have a lot of emails to read through now.)

2 thoughts on “Break Out the Parachute Pants, It’s Humor Time”

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