I Thought This Shit Only Happened in High School

In the men’s bathroom in the UN European Headquarters in Geneva they had a flyer above the urinal that said something in French and then the English version: “Please use the black gum button on the floor to flush the water after using the urinals.” Someone took a pen and crossed out “use” and wrote “press” and crossed out “gum” and wrote “rubber.” Underneath that s/he then wrote “USA!” Here’s a picture.Img_0374

At my high school people post flyers above urinals advertising events and whatnot. Someone will post a flyer about a meeting on AIDS in Africa and someone will write some horrible thing like “Quarantine Africans!” or “Jane is hot!!!” (if Jane is organizer). Stupid shit like that.

I didn’t think I’d see the same thing at the UN. And people wonder why the US has a poor image abroad.

2 Responses to I Thought This Shit Only Happened in High School

  1. On the plus side, by putting “USA!” at the bottom, the editor identified the changes as American English, whose nuances can be confusing to some European English speakers. It also helps to illustrate something about our culture (warts and all.)

    I came across signs in China that were really humorous translations…”Please Cherish the Plants” and my favorite: “Please fall gently to the river…” I have the pictures to prove it.

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