Friday, March 01, 2002

On my drive back from lunch I saw a sign with the familiar instructions, "If your clothes catch on fire, Stop, Drop, and Roll!"

I don't know if I'm the first to notice this, but these instructions are awfully inefficient.

First "Stop" -- stop what? It's pretty hard to continue making a sandwich, or walking around, or whatever you're doing while you're dropping and rolling. Obviously, stopping is neccesary, but so obvious that it shouldn't require mentioning. Do most recipes or other instructions begin with, "Stop whatever else you were doing?"

The same goes for "Drop." Well, it's pretty hard to roll while you're standing up straight or sitting on a chair isn't it? Again, I think this is pretty self-evident.

The only instruction that really seems neccesary to me is "Roll." This entails the previous two steps. I guess it's not very catchy, though.

In terms of fire safety instructions, "Pull, Aim, Sweep, and Spray" regarding the use of a fire extinguisher is vastly superior. Each step is distinct and independent. Plus, it's an acronym -- P.A.S.S.
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