Silly signs

I Got A Suspicious Laugh From The Sign On The Back Of A Cargo Van That I Was Behind, Recently. In Large, Contrasting Block Letters On The Back, It Said,




My daughter would like that “Don’t drink and derive” sign, she’s one of the few people I know that gets Calculus (except for those two girls in my high school AP calc class that ruined the curve for the rest of us).

Back in the 80’s I was driving on A1A outside of Daytona Beach when I saw a simple sign painted on the side of a cinder block building, “Guns, Ammo, Beer”.

Ed B.

The last time I was in Niagara falls, the Honeymoon Hotel offered “Family Rates”!

There are a couple signs about 1/4 mile from ,e

“Slow down - Blind Child in area”

Then 100’ past.

“Blind Driveway ahead.”

I have in my photo album a photo taken in the early '70s of a North Dakota highway sign stating "
“Speed Limit 40
Night 55.”

Always wondered about that one.


CSA … your sign made me remember, sometime in the late 60’s, early 70’s a high school friend of mine bought a brand new air cooled VW Beetle and we decided for its first long drive to drive it from snowy Colorado to sunny Phoenix for a little spring break holiday. We wanted to save our money for spring break activities, you know buying drinks for the ladies, and not spend it on annoying items like gasoline. His brother told him how. When he got on the freeway, he’d look for a big truck going in our direction. Then he’d mosey right up to the back, traveling maybe 5 or 6 feet behind the truck at 65 mph, and travel in the truck’s slipstream to save gas. Maybe that sign is for drivers like him!


Funny you mention that. I wore out 2 air-cooled VW Type-1s, a 64 and a 71 myself, and I did the same thing… The drafting (getting “vacuumed” down the highway) and the drafting (drinks). I remember it was like trying to reach “escape velocity” to leave Earth’s orbit or something. You’d accelerate and approach the rear of an 18-wheeler and the buffeting would to begin to toss you about. You’d continue getting closer and then you’d blissfully be in calm air and would literally have to ease up on the accelerator.

Also, people (nut jobs?) who drove those bugs had to know how to pass. You’d have to accelerate up to the rear of a vehicle and when about to collide, you would edge out and see if the oncoming traffic lane was clear. If it was, you’d cruise on over and complete the pass. If not, you’d brake and then try the same thing a couple miles later. Rinse and repeat.

I don’t know why I’m this old (just like the drummer of The Rolling Stones). I guess I beat the odds. I’m a little more refined now. I have more horsepower and more money for gas and alcohol (for home consumption).


I had a '61 Beetle. My chipmunks could not have gotten me to the tail end of a moving semi.
I wouldn’t have had the courage to “draft” a semi. You, CSA, definitely beat the odds.

And Then There Was The Seven Motorcycles…
(The Last One Has Been Parked In The Back Of My Garage Since 1986.)

I remember it was like trying to reach "escape velocity" to leave Earth's orbit or something. You'd accelerate and approach the rear of an 18-wheeler and the buffeting would to begin to toss you about. You'd continue getting closer and then you'd blissfully be in calm air and would literally have to ease up on the accelerator.
I remember doing something similar when I did a cross-country trip on a 250cc almost a decade ago. Highway speed was marginal, especially at altitude. I was late getting into Carson City at night, and a semi passed me headed that way at about 70. I got down in a tuck (so that I could catch him), and it was like a "tractor beam" when I hit his slipstream. Definitely "do not do at home," but I knew I could stop MUCH quicker than him, so it was mostly a matter of keeping alert at all times.

@meanjoe75fan Have you ever seen those dual wheel skid marks heading for the shoulder on the interstate? That happens when the semi’s air pressure suddenly hits zero. I wonder, if an air brake hose pops and the brakes lock up, do the brake lights come on? I suspect that no one who has been drafting a semi can answer that question.

As I said: do not try at home. I was tired and getting in to C.C. 10 minutes earlier was worth the 0.04% mortality risk, as stupid as it sounds to say it now. Frankly, I was much more worried about roadkill/potholes than your scenario.

And I only had to stay just close enough to keep up. As I recall, that was about one truck length. Also, if memory serves, there were slight concerns about fuel…90% sure I’d make it, but an off chance of walking the last few miles, so every drop saved was appreciated.

To actually consider your scenario as a thought experiment: assuming total air pressure loss (failure of the glad hand connection?) only SOME of the wheels default to wheels locked. (I’m not sure how many do, but not all of them, I know that much.) That means stopping distances would be worse than usual. Plus, whatever wheels went full lock wouldn’t stop as well as if they were rolling (coefficient of friction, yada yada). On top of which, the tires would be making an ungodly squeal, alerting me to the situation (almost) as quickly as brake lights (can’t forget speed of sound vs. speed of light).

P.S. even in a catastrophic pressure loss, the truck has reservoirs of air that take time to empty. This suggests a reasonably slow stop…slower than a normal “max performance” stop…and MUCH slower than I could stop 650#. I still think the worst-case scenarios would be a thrown tread, followed by roadkill, followed by a huge pothole. (I did stay away from directly behind the tires, FWIW.)

A" bobtail" truck is the tractor part of a tractor-trailer without the trailer.

I dunno, in my experience the first thing you see is smoke coming from the tires and all heck breaking loose when the truck heads for the side of the road.

In school, the guy across the haul was from New York and did that driving his VW to South Dakota so he says. He claimed he could even let go of the steering wheel and it was just like being hitched to the truck. I never dared do anything like that with my VW.

photo beaumont-elpaso_zps14e4611c.jpg

Might be a good idea to top off the tank in Beaumont.

To Borrow An Expression From My Flying Days…

There Are Old Pilots Drivers And There Are Bold Pilots Drivers, But There Are No Old Bold Pilots Drivers.


When my daughter was just starting to read, she observed a sign at a convenience store that said: “No dogs allowed; Seeing Eye dogs only”. I had trouble explaining to her which seeing eye dogs could read.

On the same sign post; Windsor, Windom, Winsted. I didn’t notice which ways the arrows were pointing. Somewhere nearby in Augusta Maine are exits for Belfast and Belgrade, one right after another. If you’re from out of town, you’ll want to stay there.

@B.L.E. should I ever encounter that sign at some point in the future, no question about it, I’ll immediately turn right toward the winery … lol …

This sign is on a pier you can drive on ,with no guard rail in Kinvara Ireland .