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When I first saw this sign, I was so dazzled by the art work and bright colors that I assumed it said “owl spirit”. It was only when I turned the corner and saw this next sign that I noticed the missing “I”.


Then I had to wonder, did they misspell the sign? Or, was sprit a real word that I didn’t know?

Luckily, I refrained from making fun of the spelling because it turns out sprit is a real word that, according to The Free Dictionary, means “a pole that extends diagonally across a fore-and-aft sail from the lower part of the mast to the peak of the sail.” Even after I read the definition, I didn’t get the connection to the sign or the owl or the cafe until I looked at the first sign again and realized there is a ship and a sail and a mast , in addition to the owl. Now, after three weeks of pondering, I finally get it. Duh! It’s worrisome to be so slow to catch onto things, which is why at this very moment I’m sipping some Brain Boost tea. 🙂

The rest of these signs didn’t make my brain ache, I just found them appealing. All are from Port Townsend. The odd framing and cutting off of edges can be chalked up to me being blinded by the sun and preoccupied by the word “sprit.”





In response to Cee’s Which Way Challenge – Week 31


18 thoughts on “Owl…What?

    1. My spellcheck didn’t recognize it either and Google didn’t bring up the meaning the first time I typed it in. I still think maybe it was originally a typo though…. 🙂

  1. Highly creative signs.
    I love the world’s end sign the most.
    (which reminds me I was going to photograph some down my local shopping street and completely forgot).
    I’ll have to wait for some decent weather though. We’ve been experiencing a colder that usual phase of winter Down Under. At least it’s good for the ski resorts up in the mountains.

    1. The World’s End sign is intriguing. Now I wish I’d gone in to see what kind of place it was.

      This year seems to be a year of weather extremes. We’re hotter than normal and you’re colder than normal. And neither is good for getting out to take photos!

  2. Lots of neat looking signs in Port Townsend. When you said you didn’t know that sprit was a real word the first thing that popped in my head was that you hadn’t gone through a pirate phase with books as a kid like I did.

    1. No, I didn’t have a pirate phase! I went through Narnia, Trixie Belden and Nancy Drew phases but never a pirate phase. My reading as a kid was always very limited because of my love of series books. I should have branched out more!

  3. Let’s put the I back in “Sprit” and get the L out of Public….. oh wait, nevermind!

    Seriously though, I do love the colorful artwork of both of those signs. The Celtic traders should commission whoever did those two logos, because Wandering Angus looks a little creepy to me…

    1. LOL! I don’t think many folks would be brave enough to wander in a place called The Pubic House.

      Wandering Angus looks like one of those fairy pipers that lures children away. Maybe they’re trying to keep children out of their shop….

    1. I wondered if it started as a typo and then they had that sign with the mast painted to make it look like it was on purpose. It amazes me how many signs do have typos!

  4. Owl cafes are supposedly a “thing” now. Not sure if this was one or not,but basically a way to keep owls captive for coffee drinkers to mingle with. :/

  5. What a great collection of signs! Did you go into any of those places, because they all look like they’d be interesting. I’ve never heard the word sprit and would have assumed it was a typo in the signs as well.

  6. I love the artistry and colors of the signs as well. When I do photography, which I haven’t done in a while, I tend to find the uniqueness and artistry in signs appealing as well. I had to go back to the first photo to put together owl and sprit, as well. But I am still unsure of what either have to do with coffee…

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