Monday, August 31, 2009

Would Mark Twain have tried to sell his family on Craigslist?

For the past few weeks The Mark Twain House staff has been busy putting together the final touches on our upcoming What Would Twain Tweet (W.W.T.T) event. As one of the panelists for the event, I've been doing some thinking about what Mark Twain would tweet, if he would have tweeted at all. BUT you'll have to come to find out my thoughts on that (for tickets, call me at 860.280.3154. $15 general admission, $10 members/Let's Go Arts).

The Hartford Courant wrote an article today about a listing they found on Craigslist. The listing title? "Perfectly Good Parents - $155". A man from Madison, CT listed his parents on Craigslist. I can say that's the first time I've ever seen anything like that on Craigslist, but when Craigslist offers everything else, why not? Michael Amatrudo said he was creating his own "social experiment" when he did it, and apparently it's working. He said he's even gotten emails from people (who realized it was a joke) and started playing along with him. And even his parents thought it was humorous.

This all made me wonder if Mark Twain ever would have thought to do this, or something similar, if Craigslist were around in his day. He did once post an interesting classified ad in the Hartford Courant after a young boy stole an umbrella of his at a baseball game:

To the Public

TWO HUNDRED & FIVE DOLLARS REWARD--At the great baseball match on Tuesday, while I was engaged in hurrahing, a small boy walked off with an English-made brown silk UMBRELLA belonging to me, & forgot to bring it back. I will pay $5 for the return of that umbrella in good condition to my house on Farmington avenue. I do not want the boy (in an active state) but will pay two hundred dollars for his remains.
Samuel L. Clemens.

While not quite the same as trying to sell your parents online, it makes use of a similar type of humor, don't you think?


1 comment:

Pablo said...

Hilarious! I'd never heard that story before, about his UMBRELLA.