Photo of a door with a sign that says This Is Not a Door.So, remember this photo of a door labeled “This is not a door?” Last year, someone else sent a picture of the same door to FAIL Blog. Then a week ago, someone submitted mine to Friends of Irony, where Katie spotted it a few days later.

Here’s where things get interesting.

On both sites, people were absolutely convinced that it was “obviously” photoshopped.


No, it’s real. It’s in a small business complex at the corner of Newport Ave. and Irvine Blvd. in Tustin, California. You can go there and look if you want. And of course there are the two photos taken from different angles.

The obvious conclusion is that people don’t really know how to tell whether a photo has been manipulated. At least on FAIL Blog, some of the doubters had reasons, even though they amounted to not understanding perspective.

I was tempted to post a comment linking to this XKCD strip (My hobby: insisting that real-life objects are photoshopped), but settled for requesting a photo credit instead.

Here are some interesting/amusing signs we spotted on our trip to Northern California last month.

Silver Surf MotelSilver Surfer Motel

This seemed appropriate for a trip to a comic convention. And like the Sylar Industries sign I posted earlier, all it needed was a little adjustment. Can you get a room with the power cosmic? Found in San Simeon, across the highway from our motel. (Keep in mind as you read on that the one on the right is the only doctored photo in the post.)

Sign: Mr. Speeder, Meet Mr. Traffic CopMy personal favorite was this one in Sunnyvale. It’s always nice when city planners (or anyone making a sign, really) have a sense of humor.

Perhaps Mr. Speeder was frustrated by driving this street, somewhere near San Luis Obispo:

Exit 220A to Traffic Way
Continue reading

Up in Napa, we found this sign at the entrance to Syar Industries.

Sign: Syar Industries, Inc.

Being Heroes fans, we couldn’t resist. Not only was the name just one letter off of the show’s popular villain, but the elongated S in the logo was just begging for a trio of crosspieces to turn it into the helix symbol that appears everywhere in the show. A bit of photo-manipulation later:

Adjusted Sign: Sylar Industries, Inc.