Posts Tagged ‘Traffic’

Road Sense 101: Road Signs and What They Really Mean


Have a problem perceiving things the right way? Does your mind tell you to do the complete opposite of what you’re told to do? Well worry not then, ‘coz you’re one among the millions of Indians who suffer from the precise same problem and don’t even know about it. A brilliant place to find these geniuses at work is on our very own Indian roads. Highways, main streets, crossroads, level crossings, flyovers, gullies and where not, you’ll always find one of your kind. And that’s uniquely Indian.

Road signs. Meant to guide the driver and to effectively manage traffic without the actual need of a human. More often than not though, Indian drivers mysteriously perceive these road signs as completely different instructions. Let’s have a look at some examples:

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Really Means: Straight prohibited or No Entry

Perceived Meaning: Drive right through, we’ve been expecting you.

Also Perceived as: What? A challenge? I’m going in.

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Really Means: One way sign

Perceived Meaning: See if you can dodge oncoming traffic and wedge your way through. Don’t worry, as long as you’ve got change in your wallet we’ll handle the police.

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Really Means: Pedestrians prohibited

Perceived Meaning: The world is your oyster and nothing’s out of bounds for you! Please feel free to use the street for all purposes that you may require it for. Littering will be appreciated.


Really Means: Left turn prohibited (Another variant is the Right turn prohibited sign)

Perceived Meaning: Free left turn at all times. Do watch out for competing traffic though and do NOT let those bastards past you.

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Really Means: U-Turn prohibited

Perceived Meaning: Don’t take this seriously. It’s an inverted U after all.

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Really Means: Overtaking Prohibited

Perceived Meaning: In case the vehicle ahead is slowing your highness down, mow down the prick and/or make a rude gesture while overtaking him from any direction of your choice.

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Really Means: Horns prohibited

Perceived Meaning: Pump up the volume, pump up the volume!


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Really Means: No Parking

Perceived Meaning: Look around. Do you see anyone else parking here? Yes? Alright go ahead. No? Alright go ahead.

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Really Means: Speed Limit 50 km/h

Perceived Meaning: Don’t drive like a freaking 50 year old. Hit the pedal!

Also Perceived as: Driving below 50 km/h will prove beyond a doubt that you’re a pussy.

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Really Means: Stop
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Perceived Meaning: Random red octagon trying to spoil my driving experience.
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Really Means: Give Way
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Perceived Meaning: Drive defensively taking the inside line. Evade any attempts of tailgating by swearing loudly.
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Really Means: Pedestrian crossing
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Perceived Meaning: Pedestrian challenge ahead. Dodge as many possible for extra points.
Also Perceived as: Zebra crossing is for sissies!
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Really Means: School ahead
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Perceived Meaning: School challenge ahead. Hang around for hot teachers. Make toddlers cry for bonus points.
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Really Means: Cross road
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Perceived Meaning: Cross over to the other side before people from the other three directions get the same idea. Ignore all red lights at all costs.
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Really Means: Gap in median
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Perceived Meaning: Gap too far ahead! Must make my own gap in the median here. Proceed to cut across the median and over to the other side. Act macho afterwards.
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Really Means: Roundabout
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Perceived Meaning: DrivingĀ in circles was never productive. Navigate through the traffic in a perfectly straight line.
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Really Means: Barrier ahead
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Perceived Meaning: Barrier to your successful attempt at flouting the rules ahead. Unmount the vehicle and proceed by ducking under the obstruction for a full standing ovation.
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Another name for this post could be Sarcasm 101, as I’ve been told. But you’ve got to admit the fact that some of these made you chuckle (at least some?). If they didn’t then you’re one of the people I’m taking a piss at here (if you’re not, feel free to check out possibly funnier posts on the blog)
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