Thursday, February 01, 2007

to serve and take notice

Around Boston, business folk are very fond of backing up statements that you shouldn't do something with the threat that police will take notice. Three examples:

police take notice: fence
(private parking near Inman Square--which, incidentally, is the home of Magnolia, my new favorite Cambridge restaurant)

police take(s) notice: laundromat
(laundromat near where I live)

police take notice: wall
(no parking sign spray painted on wall in theatre district, Boston; includes me with horrible red-eye)

Is it just me, or is the idea that police will take notice not exactly the scariest threat in the world? Even, maybe, does it not seem like much of a threat at all? Every time I see one of these signs I think, "And then what?"

I've never seen one of these signs in the Midwest. (Or if I have, I haven't taken notice.) Is this a Boston area thing? An East Coast thing? A cities larger than Madison thing?


Dan Myers said...

I thought maybe they were ASKING the police to take notice. As in, "no parking here, c'mon cops, do your job."

Anonymous said...

I've never seen that before. I've lived in cities bigger than Madison, but never in the Northeast.

I love the "1" after the laundromat's exclamation.

Anonymous said...

How about No Trespassing signs that proclaim "POSTED" in bold letters? Of course it's posted, it's shellacked onto a tree for cryin' out loud!

Ken Houghton said...

I had the same initial reaction as Dan Meyers, and then wondered if there is a police STATION nearby, and if the officers have been parking in the verboten spots.

Took much time trying to park in areas where police took most of the legal and illegal spots, I guess.

Anonymous said...

... yeah yeah. But before you leave these environs,* take a trip to South Boston Sunday AM and enjoy the double-parking scene on Broadway, brunch at Playwright Bar or Farragut House. Jog (or walk) around Castle Island and see the beauty of Boston Harbor. You are sooooo provincially Harvard Sq. still.

* soon, so soon!

Sean said...

I've never seen signs like those in two years of living in New Haven and six years in New York, which rules out the "East Coast thing" and "cities larger than Madison thing" theories.

Teddy Love said...

Ohhhh Jer, this is some wicked good stuff (too bad I'm not linking to an audio file; just use your imagination). To answer your question, it's a Boston thing paally (i.e., pal, friend). There's a Mass. state law that I can't come up with exactly at the moment or else I'd give ya the Statute numbers, but anyway, the standard reading of it requires property owners to post that "police take notice" addendum to signage if the area is truly off limits, i.e., it gives the police the go ahead to uh, take notice and arrest people for trespassing. And while we're on the topic of all things Boston, I second anon 2:49's suggestion to head over to Southie before you leave, good to get out of the People's Republic every once in a while ;) (uhm, that's Cambridge). While you're at it, take the Green line all the way over to my old neighborhood, Queensberry St. (Backbay Fens/Museum of Fine Arts/Children's Hospital/Harvard Medical School). Fenway Park on one side, MFA on the other (though I know you've been to see the Sox so you may have explored around the neighborhood). Funny, there used to be a food cart in front of Children's, one of two places in the entire city of Boston to eat late at night. Though make that three, there was this little place next to Wally's on Mass Av, by the way, the best jazz joint (truly deserving of the title) in the city, all the legends played there ... heard some great be-bop, straight ahead, Latin jazz ... you really should check it out.

Yum, thanks for the little madeleine ... warm remembrances on a snowy Wisconsin day.