Restroom Sign in China

posted on 15 May 2009 in Fun Pics

Not sure if this is a warning or what, but it is weird… 

Photo courtesy of Nic.  

  • ric

    Is it an invitation or a warning? The symbol is useless without written clarification and so fails as a symbol.

  • Jeff

    This sign is cracking me up. Can someone please tell us what it says? I can’t imagine if people are always peeking into the restroom that they would just put up a sign warning you about it rather than doing something to stop them from doing that, but I guess a sign is easier.

  • Midas

    any one read the caractors at the top might help the rest of us make sence of this sign

  • Duck

    That’s what I’m wondering … is it a warning against peeping over the wall, or is it a warning that someone WILL be peeping over the wall?

  • O hai

    The first symbol means wash, and the second means hand, but I don’t know about the third one.

  • engrishwebmaster

    I looked it up – the three characters together come up as “toilet” when running through Google translator:

    http://translate.google.com/translate_t?hl=en&sl=ko&tl=en#zh-CN|en|%E6%B4%97%E6%89%8B%E9%96%93

  • Jeff

    Darn, thought I’d check back and see if anyone had any explanation yet. If the sign just says “toilet” it almost seems like it is a SUGGESTION. Like “Here’s a great place to check out some ladies.” Weird. I hope someone will stop by and be able to explain the intention of this sign, but it still makes me laugh a few hours later, so that’s good.

  • someone

    i’ve seen this quite a bit. i assume its just a humorous variation on the standard male/female toilet sign – the chinese can make jokes too, yknow, everything doesn’t have to have some ultra-serious meaning behind it

  • Mashimaro7

    wash hand toilet….it’s telling you to wash your hands in the toilet of course!

  • Lollerskate

    Maybe it does indicate that the bathroom is unisex. Nice sign in any case xD

  • DanT

    …but officer, i was just following the instructions on the sign…

  • http://www.xenobiologista.com/blog/ Xenobiologista

    The characters (xi shou jian) are “wash hand room” = “washroom” = toilet.

    When I took intro Chinese courses in an American college, the word they taught us for “toilet” was “ce suo”, which was almost useless because almost all the toilet signs I saw in China said “xi shou jian”. It was _slightly_ less confusing than the first time I visited the US as a child and was wondering why all the department stores, restaurants, etc. had “restrooms”. It’s not like you’re going to lie down and take a nap in them! For the most part, toilets in my home country (Malaysia) say “TOILET”.

    Of course, none of that makes the sign any less creepy…

  • Steven L

    Well, the characters above certainly does mean restroom… however, there are three ways of saying it depending on what region of China you’re from (or if you’re in Taiwan). Ce suo is another, more casually used term (vernacular mostly), while Taiwan often use hua zhuang shi.

    There’s nothing special about the characters above the symbol… it’s just the oddity of the sign itself that lends to the joke, I suppose.

  • Lynn

    The characters are “xi shou jian” which, literally tarnslated means wash hands room; it means “washroom”, or toilet.

  • Figure.10

    AAAAAAHHH! Horrible memories! No…ah! Make it stop!

    This is funny.

  • Pingback: Another New Shirt at the Store - Peeping Toilet | Engrish Brog

  • Beery

    If you look at the photo the sign is clearly on the INSIDE of the bathroom. The hinges, the bottles on a shelf outside, and the mirror inside – all show that the sign is inside the bathroom. So it’s a joke sign, like some of the ones we see in pubs here.

    Still, great idea for a Tee shirt! I’ll have to get me one of them.

  • http://link Bob18

    A lot of the worst lines seemed to have been added in after the movie was already done. ,

  • http://link SouthWind22

    And humans expect us to act normally? ,

  • cutefroglet

    That is quite as sign. Makes me a bit nervous because I am planning to go to China. I’m not exactly sure how the man climbing over the stall to peep at the woman doing her business is supposed to be a message, but the translation of these characters means 洗手间: Toilet, Laboratory, Washroom… Direct translation 洗 (wash, rinse, cleanse, purify) 手 (hand) 间 (during a period of time -or- between to sides).

    They might be letting you know upfront that the men’s room & ladies’ room are separated by a wall that doesn’t reach the ceiling. Which is still pretty creepy because guys tend to be taller…..

  • Joy

    Just a joke. And I think it’s really cool. Certainly better than standard toilet signs.

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