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Poor, poor Hair Dye!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

This is, without a doubt, one of the most depressing series of ads I have ever seen.

I wrote about Hair Dye and Eyebrows many, many moons ago, and at the time thought that I'd included all the ads Hair Dye ever wrote (Eyebrows never wrote any). But I had a lot that had never been scanned into my computer and had forgotten about. Whoops! So I decided to finish the correspondence, which lasted another two months. And boy, does it get heartbreaking. See for yourself.

Eyebrows - Do not forget your promise, and make it as soon as possible. I want very much to see you. Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - A whole week has passed. Can you meet me tomorrow (Friday at 3:30 or Saturday at 4?) Write me where and when. Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - Why do you not write? Have you forgotten my address? Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - Can I see you to-day, Friday, or Saturday, any time after four? Please send me word. Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - Remember your promise and make it as soon as possible. Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - Do not forget that "next week" is rapidly passing away and I am waiting. Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - I am carrying out your wishes to the letter and expect my reward. Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - Have been patient, and the week has ended. Make it Monday afternoon or evening without fail. Let me know as early as you can. Hair Dye.

Eyebrows - Do not bear malice where no offence was intended. I hope to hear from you Monday. Hair Dye.

Oh my lord. Hair Dye, he hasn't forgotten your address. Come on, that's just pure desperation, that is. He doesn't love you. (I've decided, for no real reason, that Hair Dye is a woman and Eyebrows is a callous, cruel, manipulative jerk of a man.) He is stringing you along and treating you like dirt and you are just taking one hit after another. Ugh. I suspect Eyebrows is married while Hair Dye is a single working girl. Eyebrows clearly communicates with Hair Dye without needing the personals, so it seems to me she has to contact him this way because he can't get letters from his little mistress at home, while he can write her directly. And the fact that she always wants to meet in the afternoon makes me think she probably has a job in the mornings. I wish I could reach across time, grab this poor little girl by the shoulders, and shake her out of her misery. And as for Eyebrows, I wish I could reach across time and tell his wife what her scumbag of a husband is up to.

Okay, maybe I'm getting carried away. It just breaks my heart to see someone get used this way - even 100+ years ago.

Having trouble reading the ads? Click one to enlarge!

©2009 Pam Epstein


Breuk September 22, 2009 at 12:33 PM  

Love your interpretation :)

Unknown September 22, 2009 at 7:28 PM  

That's really interesting - I read the genders the other way around, mainly because of the "carrying out your wishes to the letter" language - makes it sound all very noble and chivalric. Your back-story is far more exiting than anything I can come up with, though!

BH September 23, 2009 at 1:01 PM  

Eyebrows never really existed, except in Hairdye's imagination, or HD was sending code for some financial transaction(s)...

HCG September 23, 2009 at 4:02 PM  

BH may be right - but if not, I still have a sense that it's two men. It's the tone (and a little bit the nicknames).

Well found!

Pam September 23, 2009 at 4:44 PM  

Liz & HCG - I tend to put my own assumptions on gender, but naturally I have no idea. Men tended to hold most of the power back then, which is why I tend to see Hair Dye as female, since she/he comes from such a position of weakness and dependence. But who knows?

BH - For Hair Dye to be posting so many ads to an imaginary person seems pretty unlikely, given the expense involved. I think they're a real "couple," whatever the sex, mostly because I've seen so many ads like this - they were really very common. I'm sure many are fake (see Sadda and Lalla Rang), but this one has the ring of truth to me. But, as I said above - who knows!! Half the fun is the mystery.

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