Posts Tagged ‘weird’

What’s the deal with the plaque in the road at Van Ness and Market?

July 13th, 2015

House of hades one man versus American media in society 2015
 

If you’ve crossed the street at Van Ness and Market recently you may have noticed a strange little plaque embedded in the road near the crosswalk. It reads:

HOUSE OF HADES
ONE MAN VERSUS
AMERICAN MEDIA
IN SOCIETY 2015

…huh?

Turns out it’s not alone; many strangely worded linoleum plaques have appeared in roadways all over the US and South America since the 80′s. They’re known as Toynbee tiles, a reference to the wording of some of the earliest ones. You can find more via Google Image Search.

Who’s installing them? One filmmaker produced a documentary film on the subject — but never resolved the mystery entirely. The general consensus seems to be that these plaques originated in or near Philadelphia. The tiles later spread and changed in their messages. One theory is there are now multiple copycats, an idea supported by an Instructables video demonstrating how to make your own.

Still, knowing what these plaques are called and where they came from doesn’t tell us about who placed this particular one at Van Ness and Market or what its message is intended to convey. For now at least, that remains a mystery.

WTF: Bell Plumbing advertisement

January 13th, 2010

I’ve been noticing some strange ads lately for a company called Bell Plumbing North here in San Francisco. Their ad is one major WTF after another.

And then some.

Here’s the ad in question:

bell plumbing

So there’s a smiling guy with the word PLUMBING in big red letters next to him. Not so strange… or is it?

Let’s look a little closer.

phone

Yes, that’s a phone. It’s an ad for plumbing, and he’s holding a phone. Not a pipe; a PHONE.

What does a phone have to do with plumbing? Everybody knows you can call a plumber on a phone, you don’t need this concept presented visually.

Is the idea that you can use a telephone to call a plumber particularly surprising to anyone? The add effectively states “we’re not like those other plumbing places where you have to send a telegram.”

But it gets stranger — look at his shirt.

shirt logo

Do you see what I see? Because what I see is this:

bell telephone

But wait… that’s the logo for Bell Telephone. The guy in the ad is wearing a phone company uniform. Does he work for the phone company during the day, and moonlight as a plumber at night?

Or perhaps he’s the customer. He’s a phone operator, and the men’s room at the phone company is flooding, so he’s calling a plumber.

No explanation could possibly be satisfactory.

Lastly, let’s look at where this company advertises.

telephone book

Yes… that’s the front cover of a phone book. They advertise on the PHONE BOOK. Phones… plumbing? Huh?

Where’s the connection? If they were a company that sold phones I would get it. But now I’m more confused than ever, and the circle of insanity is complete.