Tuesday, April 1, 2008
"Gravel, Plastic Plants, Tetra Food, Medicine"
Something I presume about this ad is that the word "used" (or some slight variant) modifies all its elements. The used gravel has been in an aquarium before, with all the accompanying hygienic implications. Used plastic plants - same implications. Partially empty container of Tetra food. Partially expended medicine.
Something else I presume? The fish - that swam above the gravel and amongst the plants, that ate the food and needed the medicine
- are dead, after a long illness.
The medicine was inadequate to the task. Despite treatment efforts, nothing could save the fish. So what we have here is all the elements of an infected aquarium, along with a failed cure for the infection. And someone willing to let you have it all, free. Once upon a time, this poster would have nailed a parchment to a tree, somewhere in Indian Territory, with the calligraphy "Free Comfortable Blanket," the smallpox, of course, would be presumed.