Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Greatest Thing Yet

This is the "greatest thing yet" - and all for fifty cents. And "everyone is delighted with it," so you'll know how to react when you receive it in the mail. You will be delighted with it. It is "odd, curious and interesting." Just stick it in your pocket (if you can manage to fold down all the little wheels) and you'll be ready to head out the door and start your day. It is nine separate instruments all in one:

-a Double Microscope - for all those "wonders of nature" you'll be needing to check out on your way to school or work (perhaps the bus stop sign);
-an Opera Glass, in case you wander into La Scala;
-a Stereoscope, so you can look at amusing pictures during the opera (in case you get bored);
-a Burning Lens, because - what if you then miss the bus and end up in a boreal forest? You will need to make a little bonfire and toast marshmallows (don't forget the marshmallows when you leave the house in the morning);
-a Reading Glass, which will be handy because if you are stuck in the forest, I hope you brought a few magazines.
-a Telescope, which will tell you it isn't the forest, it's just the local park.
-a Compass, handy for figuring out how to get back to the bus stop;
-a Pocket Mirror - so you can check that you still look fabulous!
-and a Laryngascope, "for examining ear, eyes, nose and throat. It is worth all the cost to locate even one painful cinder in the eye." You can blame that cinder on the fun with the Burning Lens.

You will be equipped for anything when you stick this "wonderful instrument" in your pocket. Cue Mae West quotation here: Is that a wonderful instrument in your pocket, or are you just happy you found your way back to the bus stop?

[From Popular Mechanics, October 1922.]

12 comments:

Tori Lennox said...

I'm giggling like mad over your uses for this little gizmo. :)

Lidian said...

Tori - I think I might need one of these things next time I go downtown ;)

Vintage Christine said...

They just don't all-in-ones like they used to. Of COURSE you need a laryngascope, a burning tool and a stereoscope with all the other goodies. All for half a dollar. Amazing.

Michael said...

It looks like something that might come with the apocalypse, say in there with the locust.

Eric said...

Whoa, what if they also added a 'swiss army knife attachment' on this??? The mind boggles at the encapsulated functionality which would be possible for only fifty cents...

JD at I Do Things said...

"Everybody delighted with it."

What the hell kind of ad lingo is this? It reads like a telegram.

. . .

Oh, my god, it really IS all those things! I thought you were making them up. For crying out loud, a laryngascope? What the . . .

???

mike said...

"It is worth all the cost just to locate 1 burning cinder in the eye"

Yes, first thing I'm going you do when you get hit in the face with a burning log is whip out your Victorian Iphone!

Lidian said...

Christine - It sort of reminded me of the Honeymooners episode where Ralph tries to sell a job lot of Handy Housewife Helpers (which did everything from coring apples to taking corns off feet)

Michael - There's probably an attachment to help one deal with locusts, too.

Eric - Maybe that was in the 1923 version.

JD - Truth (as you know!) is not only stranger than fiction but WAY funnier!

mike - That is just what it looks like!

vanilla said...

---found your way back to the bus stop.

You are a hoot!

Lidian said...

vanilla - Popular Mechanics is a goldmine of funny things like this!

The Crazy Suburban Mom said...

a laryngoscope bwa-hahahahah!

Hairball said...

How come there's not a fountain pen so you write a letter while you are lost out there in the woods?