Park that simplification
One of my grittier walks in Beijing meanders through crooked streets where the most common sign advertises, in glorious neon, “成人用品24h” [chéngrén yòngpǐn / Adult Products]. So when I stumbled across this No Parking sign*…
… 禁止仃车 (jìnzhǐ tíng chē), in which the third character is 仃 instead of the proper 停, I immediately assumed it was an uneducated mistake propagated by one of society’s fringe characters.
But it turns out to be a fringe character of a different sort.
I asked Sinoglot’s Kellen Parker if he’d run across 仃 used this way. where is my ip ask edd Not only had he run across it, he had the Wikipedia reference! According to that article (which has some fascinating-looking references — I just expanded my Amazon wishlist) 仃 was used for a few years as a completely legitimate simplification of 停 in the so-called “second round” of character simplifications. The simplifications didn’t stick and were repealed in 1986, but it’s possible, if our No Parking writer was educated between 1977 and the mid-80s, that 仃 was simply how they learned to write it.
*Yes, that’s my gloved finger in the upper left — there’s a reason I’m generally prohibited from taking pictures, let alone posting them
[Here’s a 歺 in neon, complete with a half-assed shot at English:
That was taken at the big hotel in Fuyu, Qiqihaer, Heilongjiang on my trip to Sanjiazi. ~RA]