Tuesday, January 5, 2010
These two ads were about a week and a half apart. I get the feeling Fred is getting slightly taken advantage of here. What do you think?
Fred - Would like to hear from you financially. Explain when I see you. With love. Good Girl.
Fred - How can I ever thank you for your kindness to me? With love. Good Girl.I mean, granted, women had a lot of trouble getting money in any other way than through men in the nineteenth century, as I've talked about repeatedly. Since it was difficult for them to get decent jobs that paid a living wage - or indeed, to work at all - women were heavily reliant on their fathers' and later husbands' incomes, if they were so lucky as to have them. So maybe "Good Girl" was really in dire straits and really needed help. I could be a cynic, it's true.
But on the other hand, the way the first ad is phrased seems so very callous. "Would like to hear from you financially"? Doesn't that seem rather...I dunno, business-like? It also implies that this was not a one-time request. After all, if someone just out of the blue needed money from her boyfriend, she wouldn't ask so bluntly, would she? And wouldn't she need to be more specific about how much money she needs? Just seems to me that maybe Good Girl has been hearing from Fred financially more than just once or twice.
Not to mention her pseudonym: "Good Girl." There's something so sleazy about that. I'm imagining some dude with a gold pinkie ring with a little blonde dancing girl half his age, although back in the 1880s when this was published I don't think you saw many men with gold pinkie rings. But you guys get the idea, don't you? I suppose if that's the case Fred probably knew what he was getting into. But I just don't think that, for Good Girl, there was much love involved.
Having trouble reading the ads? Click one to enlarge!
©2010 Pam Epstein