I was wandering around one of the local towns recently, window shopping with my wife, when we saw this sign posted in the window of a shop. It was one of those shops that sold all kinds of weird and tacky stuff, like signs that say “You don’t have to be mad to work here, but it helps” and “MUM – Multi-tasking Underpaid Miracleworker”. The sort of shop that has woven baskets, rubber shoes and strangely disturbing carved wooden, hanging mobiles all hanging on the same rack. You get the idea.

Anyway, how could I not photograph this sign:


“Usage of Mobile Phones in this store is prohibited. Including No Photography.


Seriously, were they concerned that people would photograph their woeful stock and use the inside knowledge to set up a rival store across the road? Or perhaps they were just really militant mobile phone haters, the kind that still seem strangely prevalent. Aren’t we over the whole mobile phone-a-phobia thing by now?

Sure, it’s rude to talk on your phone while at the counter. But talking on the phone in a shop is no different really to talking to another person in a shop. It’s not a library, after all. Besides you might be saying to your friend, “Hey, you have to come down to this shop and check out the sweet woven wine bottle holders I’m looking at!”

I was tempted to walk in there with the phone on loudspeaker and take photos while I described to a friend elsewhere about this crazy sign I’d seen. But that’s just being unneccessarily confrontational. Besides, I have a blog for that sort of stuff.