Friday 2 October 2009

Picture Post October 2nd 1943

So glad my copy of Picture Post has arrived on time.
Perhaps you'd like to look over my shoulder.
I'll make us a lovely cup of OXO
(it's off ration you know).

And luckily because we're in the Southern Counties
I can offer you a slice of my Mars bar to go with it.

If you'd care to stay for supper
I'm going to try these super Cheese Chops.

I say old thing, you're looking a bit queasy,
have you got one of your sick headaches coming on?
I've got just the thing for it.

Or one of these marvellous little pink tablets?

Oh look! If you've 9d to spare,
you could send orf for Mr Willi's leaflet.
I hadn't liked to say anything before, but as we're such old friends,
I feel I must.
It's just that in these hard pressed times
it's really our duty to look as dainty as possible,
and my dear, your nose...
well it's not classical is it?
And there's only so much you can do with coupons.
You've been frightfully brave trying to conceal that high forehead with them,
but a nose needs a professional...

well at least think about it.

Postscript: Actually setting aside easy amusement at 'quaint' advertising, I have been thinking about that last one, and as the possessor of a less than classically 'correct' nose and sticky out ears, I am chastened to see how Mr C.H. Willi's offer to remedy 'facial defects' reads, particularly in the context of World War II, and how little has changed.
His pitch may be shockingly frank to our modern ears,
in its promise of an appearance of culture (whose?)
and high breeding (really?),
but the message is as clear now as then.
Uniformity = beauty = better.

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