Sunday, February 8, 2009

A spurious sign

I took a walk this afternoon and happened upon this sign for Sat'n Spurs. The name puzzled me. What could it mean? And what product or service was being sold? I pondered a while and arrived at three interpretations.

1. Sat and Spurs
The abbreviation 'n is sometimes used in place of and in advertisements. But even with the substitution of and, the name remains meaningless. Perhaps the store clerk who arranged the letters on the sign bungled the job.

2. Satin Spurs
Sometimes an apostrophe is used to mark a missing letter. Satin Spurs makes a kind of sense but is incongruous. As the old country-western song goes, spurs are meant to go "jingle jangle jingle," not make the delicate rustling sound of satin on a horse's flanks. Spurs of satin would be as surreal as Salvador Dali's drooping clocks.

3. Sat-On Spurs
The apostrophe could stand for the letter O but this would result in a very peculiar and disturbing name. Sitting on spurs sounds painful.

I decided to continue my walk and not visit the Sat'n Spurs store, as I had no desire to encounter illiterates, surrealists, or sadists. The name must remain a mystery.