Friday, June 8, 2012
A Pluto Highball
Mary, however, does not say: just get back into your leisure suit for an hour and a half, and then put the lion getup on. She doesn't tell Bill to forget the whole lion thing and go to the costume party dressed as - let's say - a Guy in a Leisure Suit, so that he will be in a better mood.
She knows what's really bothering him. I'll bet you do, too, if you're a fan of the ads that I've tagged Retro Unmentionables - he's constipated, that's what. So Mary says she'll fix him a nice "Pluto highball" and after he slugs it down and waits for an hour, why, he'll be just dandy.
"Are you sure?" Bill asks. "Remember...this is a masquerade we're going to." Yes, and your point is - what, Bill? Being crammed into that lion suit, probably. Not an easy task to go see a man about a dog in, is it.
But Mary is certain of the powers of Pluto Water. And of course Mary is right. Because "When Nature Won't...Pluto Will!" Is that not a great slogan? And what's more, you could actually go to the soda fountain at the drugstore and get a Pluto Highball for a dime - "2 ounces in a glass and add plain water." You have to ask if you want extras like a maraschino cherry.
What exactly was Pluto Water? We know from this ad that it was "From Famous French Lick Springs" (you can add any jokes you like here, I can almost think of some but not quite). Well, it was natural mineral water from French Lick, Indiana. And it won't surprise you a bit to learn that it was a strong laxative; that's because it was chock full of sodium and magnesium sulfate, apparently. It also has lithium in it, so they had to stop selling Pluto Water in the 1970s, when lithium, which is a mood stabilizer, became a controlled substance.
And then there was Sprudel Water, found at another spring in French Lick. It seems to have been a laxative, too. I found an ad for West Baden Sprudel Water from 1916 that is quite poetic about how Sprudel Water "rouses the intestinal juices" - I'll spare you the rest, but here's the link, if you must know more. Mary and Bill might want to consider moving to French Lick after that costume party.