Friday, May 16, 2008

Found: December 1938 issue of The Oracle

The best thing about old papers and magazines - especially ones targeted at a female readership - are the advertisements. There are ads for Snowfire Powder Cream ("Banish shiny nose - your greatest menace to beauty - forever!"), Sta-blond products ("When his lips meet yours, remember, his eyes are on your hair!"), Milton Feminine Hygiene Products ("What attracts men? It's the girl that radiates personal freshness!"), and Erasmic Vanishing Cream ("All the thrills of a woman who is courted and adored can be yours!"). So many exclamation marks, so little sense.

And I wonder what happened to "Anxious Mary", who wrote a letter in to Ruby M. Ayres, the paper's agony aunt: "Bill and I are in love, and he wants us to become engaged, but I am not going to agree until I know something more about him. If I ask him any questions about his life before he met me, he closes up like a book and evades the answer. I often wonder if he's done anything he's ashamed of..." Wasn't there a serial killer named Bill active in Australia in the 1930s?

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