I remember years ago going into the men’s washroom at a former workplace and seeing that someone had posted a sign over the toilet.
It read: “Please don’t pee on the toilet seat. If you do, please clean it up.”
Apart from the wording being excessively polite – and not using the cliché “be a sweetie and clean the seatie” - the thing that struck me was how sad it was that grown-ass men needed to be reminded to not be terrible human beings.
That same sadness washed over me this morning when I saw a tweet from Thursday by the City of Burnaby telling people to not be dumb about something that seemed really obvious.
The tweet read: “Reminder: Due to unsafe conditions, all lakes & ponds in Burnaby are not open for outdoor skating. Please do not step on the ice. Likewise, tobogganing on Burnaby Mountain is not encouraged due to steep slopes and plentiful rocks & trees that can create unsafe conditions.”
The tweet included a photo of birds on the ice at Burnaby Lake.
I totally understand why the city tweeted that out. It’s just being cautious. I have no issue with that.
I do have an issue with the people who need to be told about the first part of the tweet regarding not stepping on the ice.
Seriously, there are people too dumb to realize Burnaby Lake isn’t the Rideau Canal in Ottawa – where the ice is so thick it becomes what’s billed as the “world’s largest outdoor skating rink.”
They need to be spoon-fed warnings like a child being told not to touch the hot iron.
I can just imagine someone looking at that tempting paper-thin sheet of ice. “It’s frozen over! It looks thin, but I just have to walk on it!! I’m sure everything will be just fine!!!”
It’s another sad sign of our society, but really, it’s also our own fault. TV and the internet is filled with videos of people doing dumb and dangerous things. We can’t get enough of watching people being dumb and I think it has, in a way, dumbed down our society. We’ve made it OK to be dumb – something to be celebrated.
The end result is a lot of people no longer seem to worry about doing stupid things, so they end up doing more stupid things because their common sense has been eroded.
OK, maybe I’m overthinking this. Just stay off the damn ice.