Hazardous waste: it's a gas!
June 4, 2013 8:07 PM   Subscribe

Please suggest some funny stuff to write on (fake) hazardous waste labels to decorate the office of the hazmat safety guy who's coming back from sabbatical. The labels look similar to this.

Biotech, monoclonal antibodies, the usual analytical lab equipment (HPLC, electrophoresis, mass spec), nothing too scary.

A few light pranks would also be OK providing they're nondestructive and inoffensive - this workplace tends to be on the nicey-nice side.

Thanks in advance!
posted by Quietgal to Science & Nature (23 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
You should do at least one about dihydrogen monoxide (aka "water").
posted by Michele in California at 8:18 PM on June 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


1. Department of Magical Accidents and Catastrophes
3. Ministry of Magic
4. 3rd Level
5. Winifred Popple
6. Two Tuesdays past
7. Toad spawn, bobutuber puss, essence of murklap, Boomslang skin, Infusion of Wormwood, and something else we can't identify but we think it's some kind of mutated version of human waste but it's got eyes and we think it may have ears so at this point we're not really sure
9. Liquid, Solid, and Gas
10. Toxic, Other: Rapidly expanding and regurgitating any time someone presses flush in the men's bathroom, please advise asap
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 8:19 PM on June 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wondermark has a few stickers that you could steal ideas from. I do like WARNING: this device contains ATOMS.
posted by Lemurrhea at 8:35 PM on June 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


These also are full of weird ideas.
posted by aubilenon at 8:37 PM on June 4, 2013


You must have a reference to DiHydrogen Monoxide! Dangerous stuff!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 8:42 PM on June 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


STAY BACK 200 FEET

Put that on things you obviously need. Coffee, restrooms, copy machines...
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:46 PM on June 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


A coworker made stickers out of the Red Cross "no diving" and "no swimming" signs and stuck them on the lids of all the protein and DNA gel tanks.

I think funny caution signs as suggested above would go over well.
posted by variella at 8:57 PM on June 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


All suitable equipment should be outfitted with references to blinkenlights.
posted by restless_nomad at 8:58 PM on June 4, 2013


Surely the tea-room fridge should provide some inspiration. There is pretty much always some container of strange goo at the back.
posted by kjs4 at 8:58 PM on June 4, 2013


"DO NOT LOOK DIRECTLY AT LASER WITH REMAINING EYE." Substitute any eye hazard for laser.

And the large sign for a small audience: STOP CASTING POROSITY

And I don't recall the source, but I read about someone living with roommates who had a tendency to socialize the food in the fridge, so the writer labelled his milk as "Milk Experiment," and his milk went unmolested. Some trial numbers and notes wouldn't go amiss in this case.
posted by Sunburnt at 9:09 PM on June 4, 2013


Here are a couple of safety sign generators.
Alchemical elements and symbols

You could do labels on containers for Beer, Grain Alcohol/ Scotch, Tea, Coffee, Mountain Dew, Dr. Pepper that combine alchemical properties.
posted by theora55 at 9:48 PM on June 4, 2013


Currently contains 25% Resublimated Thiotimoline which will have been dissolved March 2014.
posted by Sophont at 9:49 PM on June 4, 2013


Anything from the Stuff I Won't Work With section of the excellent In The Pipeline blog, by Derek Lowe. One of my favorites is the post about dioxygen diflouride, a.k.a. FOOF.
posted by rustcrumb at 9:58 PM on June 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


If you're going with a water name use Oxidane. I've met experienced chemists with no idea of what Oxidane was. (I only know because a friend was looking up some obscure IUPAC thing and found it during his hunt.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 10:48 PM on June 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


Assuming he would be familiar with this, there's got to be some joke to be made about HAZWOPER. It's just so weird sounding. I can HAZWOPER?
posted by treehorn+bunny at 12:40 AM on June 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


"If you're going with a water name use Oxidane. I've met experienced chemists with no idea of what Oxidane was. (I only know because a friend was looking up some obscure IUPAC thing and found it during his hunt."

Oxidane really is the most proper term for the terrifying substance and evokes some of its most horrifically violent properties. Also acceptable are Hydrogen monoxide, Dihydrogen oxide, Hydrogen hydroxide, Hydric acid, Hydrohydroxic acid, Hydroxic acid, Hydrol, and μ-Oxido dihydrogen.
posted by Blasdelb at 1:06 AM on June 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Maybe something from Kevyn's warning symbols.
posted by Mitheral at 4:31 AM on June 5, 2013


These are great - thank you! We should have him properly scared to set foot in his office. Keep 'em coming!
posted by Quietgal at 6:32 AM on June 5, 2013


I like the safety placard for coffee and the "Big Scary Laser; Do not look into beam with remaining eye." There's also Hyperbole's "More Accurate Pain Chart," which makes me laugh every time (Can't find it on her site for some reason). Also: MSDS sheet for coffee (link escapes me).
posted by answergrape at 7:49 AM on June 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


You can put Asphyxiation Hazard on pretty much anything: water cooler, bag of marshmellows, piece of wood.

It's not chemical, but the most unintentionally hilarious real signs around here are the floor loading ones. There's one right outside the elevator which says "MAXIMUM FLOOR LOADING: 50 PSF". No one has put a foot through the floor yet, but there's always tomorrow.

There's also a Mil-Spec for donuts.
posted by BeeDo at 7:49 AM on June 5, 2013


I09 has a great collection of graphic Dutch safety posters.
posted by answergrape at 7:52 AM on June 5, 2013


Maybe something from Kevyn's warning symbols.

Conveniently, the Schlock Mercenary Store sells these in magnet form for $1: Microwave Lasers -- That beam you can't see is cooking you. Once upon a time I remember they sold in a pack of 5 (one of each) for $4, but I don't see those listed anymore.
posted by jraenar at 11:38 AM on June 5, 2013


DANGER! 110,000 MILLIVOLTS!
posted by drhydro at 12:37 AM on June 6, 2013


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