Washington D.C. is a very confusing town, with its monuments. Sure, most students on field trips to the city would be able to name the Lincoln Memorial or the Washington Monument at first sight -- if their school is Harvard! For the rest of us unemployed, uneducated and barely literate slobs, however, we see the Washington Monument and can only wonder, "What is this 19th-century style obelisk?"
This is an especially troublesome issue for America's enemies: people from other countries. They come here to take our jobs, while on vacation, and then they spit all over our Founding Fathers.
The two Belgian tourists paused on the pathway near the Washington Monument to answer a question.
Could they identify the towering white obelisk before them?
They examined their map. "We think, the Ellipse," said Dien Haemhouts, 24, of Antwerp.
Nice try, terrorist.
People are so bad at Google-imaging the important sights before taking their D.C. vacations that the National Park Service is about to install "an extensive new system of signs on the Mall." It will be "more uniform" and "user-friendly" than the current signs, which intentionally direct tourists to walk into the Potomac so as to feed the local sharks.
The system will also use "a series of color-coded pylons" to circumvent the widespread illiteracy issue. The Lincoln Memorial, for example, will be painted "mango."
There is some debate among nattering local officials, though, as to whether it's beneath the monuments' dignity to have them labeled with signs, the new system of which costs $2.2 million.
But no one seems to be asking how a few dumb signs managed to cost $2.2 million. Any official who can justify that price tag should be ... fired, for justifying that price tag.
Jim Newell's more user-friendly works appear at Wonkette and IvyGate.