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No standing any time

Discussion in 'English Only' started by notdominique, Sep 10, 2007.

  1. notdominique Senior Member

    France, French

    The scene is from a book by Ludmila Oulitskaïa. It happens in New York City. A truck stops just beneath a sign "No standing any time".

    1) The phrase is in English, while the book is translated into French. So I assume there is something special about it. Is it special to the US, or maybe to NYC ? Is there another way to put it that maybe would be more usual ?

    2) First I was puzzled by "any time", I just didn't understand - because here, in France, it may happen that "standing" is forbidden every two days for instance, but in that case, there will be additional information. Plain "no standing" will mean "any time".
    Same as Question 1 : I wonder if it's common usage in English ?

    Many thanks.
  2. sound shift

    sound shift Senior Member

    Derby (central England)
    English - England
    There is nothing unusual about this. The "any time" is just to emphasise that standing is not even permitted at less busy times, such as Sundays or at night.
  3. tepatria Senior Member

    Onondaga, Ontario
    Canadian English
    I agree with sound shift. It is a common term, and I understand that New Yorkers really do not pay attention to these signs, so they emphasize the point with any time - which could be seen as redundant. (There are places where standing is allowed during non-rush hour times.)
  4. tinlizzy

    tinlizzy Senior Member

    USA - English
    No Loitering would be a similar, common way to say No Standing Any Time.
  5. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    The City of New York
    USA - English
    A "no standing" sign prohibits stopping a car, even if you are just doing so for a moment for any reason other than to let a passenger in or out of the car.

    It is the common practice on street signs to list the regulation that is in effect, and the time that the regulation is in effect -- because that time may change. In some cases, one may not stop a car in the curb lane because the road is used heavily for commuting in the morning, but the road may not used heavily at other times and there is no need to prohibit 'standing" by vehicles. Thus, the sign might say "No Standing, M-F 7AM - 10AM" If, however, the standing of vehicles is prohibited at ALL times, and not just at certain hours, the sign specifies this by saying "No Standing Any Time". Frankly, it makes much more sense to me to eliminate any confusion by putting "any time" directly on the sign, to eliminate those questions by people who would ask "but does that include now????"
  6. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    The City of New York
    USA - English
    No, this is completely wrong. Loitering by pedestrians and the standing of vehicles have NOTHING to do with each other.
  7. notdominique Senior Member

    France, French
    Thanks for this explanation, because I had not seen the difference between "no standing" and "no parking" !

    Many thanks everybody.
  8. JamesM

    JamesM Senior Member

    I don't think I've ever encountered "no standing" on a sign before. This is interesting. I wonder if this is regional.

    [edit]A little checking reveals that the City of San Mateo in California refers to No Standing signs. The California Department of Motor Vehicles only refers to yellow curb markings as meaning "no standing or stopping other than to load or unload passengers" but it doesn't refer to any sign for no standing. It is in the California municipal code as a violation.

    So, apparently we do have such signs in California in some places, but I can't remember ever encountering one in southern California.
  9. notdominique Senior Member

    France, French
    This is very interesting indeed !

    Then, what sign have you when it's prohibited to stop even for a short moment, as Green White Blue explained - which will be the case on highways for example ?
  10. haywire Senior Member

    New Orleans, LA
    US - English
    "No Stopping Any Time"
    "No Stopping"
    "Stopping Prohibited"

    It varies, all three of those are present in the city of SF.

    On the freeways / highways the signs will usually say "No Parking On Shoulder."
  11. JamesM

    JamesM Senior Member

    I agree. This is my experience as well.
  12. JamesM

    JamesM Senior Member

    Actually, according to the New York State DMV site, the following definitions apply:

    A NO PARKING sign means you may stop only temporarily to load or unload merchandise or passengers.
    A NO STANDING sign means you may stop only temporarily to load or unload passengers.
    A NO STOPPING sign means you may stop only in order to obey a traffic sign, signal or officer, or to avoid conflicts with other vehicles.

    From these definitions, it looks like "No Standing" excludes stopping temporarily to unload merchandise.
  13. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    The City of New York
    USA - English
    James, you are correct. I have corrected my post above to make it read as what I was thinking, but not at all what I was writing (which, as noted, was erroneous.) The correct statement should have been that a "no standing" regulation prohibits you from stopping for any other reason than to let a passenger into or out of the car.
  14. JamesM

    JamesM Senior Member

    That's actually a very useful distinction. I wonder if it will slowly migrate to California. The only equivalent I can think of in California is a sign that says, "No Deliveries/Delivery Vehicles between X a.m and X p.m.". I don't think we have a way of designating passenger drop-off but no merchandise drop-off.

    All this talk about California and traffic signs reminds me of Woody Allen's famous line commenting on California: "What can you say about a place whose greatest cultural contribution is 'right turn on red'?" :)
  15. notdominique Senior Member

    France, French
    How accurate, that's wonderful ! Then it brings one more question (sorry:)) : what if you stop longer than temporarily ? While you have a meal in a restaurant or while you go to a movie - or even longer if you leave your car in the street over night ? Or maybe it's prohibited and you'll have to go to a parking lot (if this is the proper term) or a garage ?
  16. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    The City of New York
    USA - English
    To stop longer than temporarily is considered parking. If a sign says "No Stopping", then standing and parking are necessarily also prohibited. If a sign says "No Standing", then parking is also necessarily prohibited.
  17. notdominique Senior Member

    France, French
    Thanks, GWB.
  18. Harry Batt

    Harry Batt Senior Member

    USA English
    GWB's reasoning is correct. However, many localities use signs which coincidentally use a single sign reciting No Parking, No standing signs, No stopping. I can only assume that their sign painter gets paid by the letter or they want to expressly make their point clear.
  19. Forero Senior Member

    Houston, Texas, USA
    USA English
    The only signs I have ever seen with "standing" in relation to automobiles invariably say "no stopping, standing, or parking". I confess and affirm and do not deny that this seems redundant. Better not to use the term "standing" until everyone has a chance to read the NYC definition. ;)

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