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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Medium is the (Ambiguous) Message

Yeah, I know. Modifying Stop Signs is soooo 2002. You know what I mean: someone throws a sticker  or spraypaints a saying underneath the "Stop" so it means something else. I've been partial to the "Stop Hammertime" sign.
From flickr user Rich Anderson.
(Man, I bet Hammer wishes he could copyright this. Imagine all the money he could be making!)

But this one spotted at SE 27th and Taylor made me stop and take notice.

"Stop Peddling."

I stood there, puzzled for a moment. But what does it mean?

Are they referring to the hill in the distance, imploring us two wheeled folks to coast? It's a short but good li'l 8% or so grade. Nothing like a good li'l coast every now and again, no matter what Saint Sheldon says.

Or is this a challenge to fixie riders? Just take your feet off the pedals for this hill, kids!
The hill in question.

Or are they anti-bicycle? Maybe.

But these scenarios would make  some sense if the sign read "Stop Pedaling." Instead it implores us to "Stop Peddling." As in, sell stuff.

Has there been a spate of door-to-door salespeople using bikes? Or sketchy looking guys in hoodies on BMXs moving some "dank" in the 'hood?

I am confused.

Also: Brakes stop a bicycle wheel. You better hope they don't break when you use them.


  1. "Stop peddling" could be an anti-drug campaign, as in "Just say no", targeted at the sellers of.. instead of at the buyers. =) Nice long hill, not so nice if your at the bottom.

  2. Maybe it means bicycles need to stop here too. Some cyclists do (like some drivers) run stop signs. At my age I will take advantage of any reason to stop for a sec :-)

  3. I always get a kick out of signage and modifications to 'em

    The Disabled Cyclist

  4. John-The camera is a bit deceiving, the hill really isn't that long, two blocks at most. And Portland blocks are only 200 feet (61 m) long, so we're talking 400 feet. A good, but brief, bomb.

    Hugh-Could be!

  5. Very aggressive Girl Scouts -- terrorizing the neighborhood, riding right through flowerbeds, scaring household pets. They will not stop until every last box of Thin Mints has been sold from their plastic wicker handlebar baskets.


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