Thursday, 3 September 2009

Sign of the times

Last Thursday I was wandering the streets of Bath with a couple of hours to waste. Foiled in my intention to pop into the abbey and hear evensong (Thursday was the only day it wasn't on, for some reason), I enjoyed some people watching around the Pump Rooms and Roman Baths area - but had then to resort to that inevitable time waster of the modern era, the coffee shop.

In the toilet of this establishment I was inspired to snap a photo of a notice on the wall. It had two outstanding qualities.

One was the magnificent way it trampled over English grammar. What can we make of the sentence By pulling this cord to activate the disabled alarm? We are left dangling. The anticipation is electric.

Then comes that second statement. Staff will immediately enter the toilet. A terrifying image springs to mind. A black-clad task force of armed barristas, smashing down the door and crashing in... and quite possibly taking a dive into the toilet bowl.

All in all, a notice to treasure.


  1. It looks like someone has thought the sign itself is the cord and tried to pull it off the wall. But it does say it's a cord, and not a sign...

  2. Bath? That's an old Roman city too, in the part of England they got involved with (never conquered the Scots or Irish, right?) Hmmm, Romans invented plumbing so maybe a "toilet" reference is apropos.