What else would Mersault put in his blog?
February 20, 2006 8:46 PM   Subscribe

Kruschen Salts and Camus' Stranger: "A bit later, for want of anything better to do, I (Mersault) picked up an old newspaper that was lying on the floor and read it. There was an advertisement of Kruschen Salts and I cut it out and pasted it into an album where I keep things that amuse me in the papers." Dave Till has collected some other advertisements that Meursault might like.
posted by eighth_excerpt (7 comments total)
omg--that face! they thought that would sell a health product?

great stuff here--thanks!

that Pinkham stuff induced abortions, i hear, and that's why it was so popular. -- It will dissolve and expel tumors from the uterus in an early stage of development. ---hmmmm
posted by amberglow at 9:20 PM on February 20, 2006

I'd guess a lot of stuff from rotten.com and the like.

Excellent site, had to break out the IE to see the images, but it's well worth it.
posted by Matt Oneiros at 9:21 PM on February 20, 2006

posted by delmoi at 10:19 PM on February 20, 2006

Hmm, I should have linked to this one. "Heroin, the sedative for coughs".
posted by delmoi at 10:22 PM on February 20, 2006

For more of this sort of thing (old ads, wry commentary), see Lileks.com
posted by popkinson at 12:42 AM on February 21, 2006

Wow! I was given a bottle of Kruschen salts by a strange client of mine. He would rock up and insist on getting some work processed, but he would never pay.

He would, instead, barter. Quite forcibly.

Bag of potatoes? Check. Bag of mouldy apples? Check. Bottle of awful wine? Oh yes.

The combination of his thick italian accent and very rapid speaking manner made half of his conversation impossible to understand, and I pride myself on being able to work through thick accents.

I finally learned that it was far easier to do the work for him, at a very low cost to me, and get him out the door in 20 minutes than to argue with him. I would see the battered car liberally covered with religious messages roll up, and I would sigh a deep despairing sigh, and brace myself.

On the day of the Kruschen salts, he stood by me as I raced to finish his work. He told me that he had been in a terrible car accident some years before, and while in hospital had refused any other foods than lettuce and distilled water, with some Kruschen salts. This had, in his mind, saved his life.

Baffled, I later showed my father, who laughed. (Thanks, Dad!) I wish I could find the bottle, it had the same kind of rant about the innumerable health benefits of a dose or two a day. No, it wasn't an old bottle, it was new, with a new looking label.

I think I would rather drink the fermented carrot juice I received later (Spicy! was the phrase used on the bottle) than take some of those salts.
posted by tomble at 4:29 AM on February 21, 2006

I had no idea that Kruschen Salts was mentioned in a Camus novel. I wonder: does it appear in the original French version, or did a translator find an English patent-medicine equivalent for some French product? I'll have to check.

amberglow: your explanation makes more sense than the one I came up with in my Pinkham page. The vegetable compound wouldn't have enough alcohol in it to make a difference, but there always would have been demand for a product that stopped an unwanted pregnancy.
posted by davetill at 4:11 AM on February 22, 2006

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