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Author Topic: The elderly high-rise: fun with deliberate misunderstandings  (Read 2635 times)

Is it cold in here?

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Long ago, my home town built a multi-story set of apartments for senior citizens. They called it "the elderly high-rise". My family pretended to be puzzled as we quipped about how a new building could possibly be elderly.

The line from the first Addams Family movie about Girl Scout cookies is the gift that keeps on giving. "Gourmet sandwiches" and "artisan bread" become ominous.

A sign at a business that does not allow pets says "Service Animals Only". One literal reading is that humans are not allowed in the store. Another is that it forbids servicing humans.

Many things can be misinterpreted as commands. Just imagine the trouble you would cause yourself obeying all the packages that say "CANE SUGAR".

Does anyone else make a game of this?
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Ignominious

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I do often wonder why people use large trucks to announce that they are transporting their streeds in a Ford but why else would they paint Horses In Transit on the side?
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Loki

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A sign at a business that does not allow pets says "Service Animals Only". One literal reading is that humans are not allowed in the store. Another is that it forbids servicing humans.

Quote from: Cecil Baldwin
To start off, I have been asked to read a brief service announcement. The City Council would like to to announce the opening of a new dog park. Dogs are not allowed in the dog park. People are not allowed in the dog park. You may see hooded figures in the dog park. Do not approach the dog park. The fence is electrified. Do not, for any period of time, look at the hooded figures. The dog park will not harm you.

(Welcome to Night Vale, Episode 1, quoted from memory).

One recent example I've come across is a bench in a British park dedicated "to Nicole Campbell, who never saw a dog and did not smile".

The term is structural ambiguity, by the way. (I am a Linguistics major now ;))
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The future is a weird place and you never know where it will take you.
the careful illusion of shit-togetherness

Is it cold in here?

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A packet of either oxygen absorber or desiccant announced that it was not edible.

"DO NOT EAT", it said.

I considered finding out who made it and sending them a prank letter saying that I'd followed their instructions and had experienced symptoms of weakness and weight loss and that my doctor was becoming concerned.
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Is it cold in here?

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There was and perhaps still is a service that takes calls from runaway kids, with no questions asked except "Do you need anything?", which would then contact parents and let them know their kid was at any rate alive.

It was called "The Runaway Switchboard".
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Is it cold in here?

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I didn't have to try when Aviation Week splashed across their cover "Combat Aircraft Safety".
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Akima

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There's a Cyanide & Happiness comic that goes something like this:
"I help blind children."
(click to show/hide)
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"I would rather have questions that can't be answered, than answers that can't be questioned." Richard Feynman

Is it cold in here?

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The "Baby and Toddler Cookbook" is incomplete without a dedication to Jonathan Swift.

I heard about a charitable event called "Benefit for Gun Violence".
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Is it cold in here?

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Amtrak's accommodation for disabled people is a "mobility impaired compartment".
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Ignominious

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There's a Cyanide & Happiness comic that goes something like this:
"I help blind children."
(click to show/hide)

This reminds me of the urban legend of a shopkeeper who had a collection tin on his counter with the legend For The Blind on it. Once enough money had been donated he installed one on the shop front.
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Is it cold in here?

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The cliche in this genre is the sign
SLOW CHILDREN AT PLAY
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Tova

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"There is no expedient to which a man will not resort to avoid the real labor of thinking." - Sir Joshua Reynolds (paraphrased)

Tova


Then, of course, there is my personal favourite, "Bill Posters is innocent."
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"There is no expedient to which a man will not resort to avoid the real labor of thinking." - Sir Joshua Reynolds (paraphrased)

Is it cold in here?

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"Homeless Task Force"
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Is it cold in here?

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The sign at the parking space at the library said "Library Parking Only" but I contumaciously parked a car there instead.
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
Quote from: an unnamed minister's sermon
In your face, darkness!  We are the light and we outnumber you!

Tova


I just saw an advertisement reading: "Today only iced donuts."
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"There is no expedient to which a man will not resort to avoid the real labor of thinking." - Sir Joshua Reynolds (paraphrased)

Undrneath

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I just saw an advertisement reading: "Today only iced donuts."

What will they be tomorrow?
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__________oO0___(_O_  _O_)___0Oo_____________
                                     U
                                   Kilroy wuz here
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