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Heavy Plant Crossing

January 13, 2012

CactusI have been enjoying a frivolous series of letters in the Independent which rely on the kind of play on words which tends to be easier in English than other European languages.

The common road sign ‘heavy plant crossing’ brings a picture into my mind of a large and clumsy cactus plodding across the road very slowly, causing motorists to shake their fists and shout abuse. This morning’s letter referred to an Australian sign ‘Lyre birds cross’; the writer was glad to report that he had managed to escape their wrath. Crossings for zebras and humped pelicans led one reader to ask whether it might not be kinder to provide an underpass for these poor creatures. What about ‘dead slow children’ – surely they need a patient teacher rather than a crossing?

My favourite so far came from a reader from Cardiff where the sign outside the local steelworks reads ‘Danger – hot slag crossing’.

Simple humour: timeless, harmless and fun.

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