Imagine walking into a restaurant to have a meal and you stumble upon a sign that says ‘STRICTLY NO EATING OR DRINKING IN RESTAURANT’.
Similarly, picture a sign by the swimming pool that goes ‘STRICTLY NO SWIMMING’ or even a sign in the casino that warns ‘STRICTLY NO GAMBLING’.
No doubt these comically ironic signs sprout disbelief to any who catches a glimpse of them. In fact, such a sign was spotted in Singapore a couple of years back.
Yesterday (23 July), Facebook page All Singapore Stuff uploaded a picture of a yellow sign which reads ‘STRICTLY NO RUNNING OR PLAYING AT PLAYGROUND’.
This sign is actually the infamous sign that was spotted at a playground at Block 323B, Sengkang East Way back in June 2013.
The sign – which said children are not allowed to run or play in the HDB playground – was later taken down after it drew ridicule from residents and netizens.
Dr Lam Pin Min, Member of Parliament for Sengkang West SMC where the playground is located, said that he was unaware how the text on the sign was decided.
He stated that the sign was put up because residents complained that children at the playground were making too much noise.
“The sign was erected to serve as a reminder for users of the playground to exercise due consideration and refrain from making excessive noise,” he said. “We did receive feedback in the past from young families of newborn children being woken up as a result.”
He noted that the sign had been there for at least six years, and that it was not removed earlier as the town council (TC) had not received any unfavourable feedback regarding it.
“The TC had been instructed to remove the sign as I feel it is no longer relevant or necessary,” he said.
Dr Lam also highlighted that this incident is “likely a one-off signage with a poorly phrased message”, adding that “a better message would be, ‘Please be considerate and refrain from making excessive noise.'”
However, a 12-year-old boy’s testimony begged to differ with Dr Lam’s statement regarding the sign being present for at least six years.
Speaking in an interview with The New Paper back then, Dylan Koh, who had been living there for 10 years, mentioned that the sign was put up only recently. “Although I noticed the sign, I still continued playing,” he said.
Ultimately, upon the removal of the fatuous sign, the residents of the area expressed their relief as the children were then able to run around and play in peace.
Now, let’s just hope Dr Lam is right about this being a “one-off signage”; wouldn’t want to walk into a library in Singapore and spot a sign that says ‘STRICTLY NO READING IN LIBRARY’.