Frustrating signage

Photo courtesy of Me


I have the sense we’ve talked about this before, but I was confronted with it anew when my darling fiancée and I went to see Twelfth Night on Sunday. Whatever building is at 5th and E (all I could positively identify was a McDonald’s) has sprouted jersey walls all around it and that’s removed a lot of available parking, forcing me to park all the way out on 3rd and E.

Where it was mostly clear, excepting a few cars. The cause, no doubt, was these signs. I’ve always viewed them as meaning from 7am at the start to 7pm at the end. After all, if a store was going to be open from Noon to 5pm, Monday through Thursday, you wouldn’t write “from Noon Monday through 5pm Thursday,” would you?

Since I escaped without a ticket I can only assume I was either the last one slated to be towed or that interpretation was correct. What would be a better way to communicate this information, do you think?

Well I used to say something in my profile about not quite being a “tinker, tailor, soldier, or spy” but Tom stole that for our about us page, so I guess I’ll have to find another way to express that I am a man of many interests.

Hmm, guess I just did.

My tastes run the gamut from sophomoric to Shakespeare and in my “professional” life I’ve sold things, served beer, written software, and carried heavy objects… sometimes at the same place. It’s that range of loves and activities that makes it so easy for me to love DC – we’ve got it all.


6 thoughts on “Frustrating signage

  1. You can thank Obama and his transition team for taking up residence in that building, planting the jersey walls and creating the parking and transit nightmares.

  2. Don, I am trying to work with the DC Gov’t to get this information and other information in a real time feed so that I can update I am building an iPhone app to that should be available soon! Let me know what you think about the site and the best way to display it!


  3. These are the hours that construction is allowed to commence in DC. Maybe that has something to do with it.

  4. By the way, a lot of the jersey barriers got moved back in the last week or two (at least temporarily). Over the weekend, they weren’t blocking any lanes of traffic. Was this just luck or have they relaxed security?

  5. Local PD are the only ones to enforce those signs. They have to be registered with the district in which they are active; just give a ring to the local PD, confirm the sign is real (you can get these signs from hardware stores, or the PD will give you them even if they aren’t “on the books”), and act accordingly.

  6. The better way to communicate it would be to have three sections:

    1. Start and end dates (fill-in-the-blanks, unambiguous);
    2. Days of week (Days marked, either circled or with checkboxes);
    3. Hours in effect (24 hrs, or start and end times daily).

    But since nobody in DC gubmint actually pays attention to clarity of communication, I’m sure this will never change.