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Men at Work Signs in China
Take the panel of Beijing. The heap is very high in proportion to the size of the worker (similar to Mali). The earth must be a bit humid otherwise the heap could never exist in this shape.
All the workers on the first row must be new to the job and someone should tell them to rotate the blade of the spade under a more useful angle — Read also Bartolomeo's Best Practices.
If the sign is directed towards workmen telling them not to dig into a cable under the surface then the drawing should not show the man. The target of the message shouldn't be in the picture. And the spade should hit the wire.
The design from Hanghzou reminds me of similar drawings at several European places. However a shaft giving way under the load isn't seen that often. We have examples from Austria and Svalbard where we could blame the industrious worker or the inclement weather, but I think that in this case we should point to the inferior quality of the tool.
|N. Heerink wrote me:
Because of the Olympics construction work is going on at so many places all over Beijing (3 metro lines at the same time) that the modern men-at-work signs are running out. They have to fall back to the old handicraft stock.
Finally some news from China that's not depressing. Certainly for collectors. Two really nice finds. Enjoy.
The text says:
Construction ahead - cars should take another route
|Beijing, 5.IX.2006; pict. N. Heerink|
The same guy can be seen in the picture at the top of this page where he is telling us that we should make a detour. Here, however, he is radiating some good solid advice: You must wear your helmet.
It must be that Bartolomeo's Best Practices are gaining ground in China.