Me and Chairman Mao
I saw a funny ad for a microwave in the subway the other day. Funny for two reasons, actually. First, because I don't remember the last time I actually saw an ad for a microwave in the US. I think that nowadays it's just one of those things you go buy when you need one without thinking much beyond what color you need and how much you can spend, like a cordless phone or something. Probably that's because microwaves have been around for too long in the US. My grandma, for example, has had one for as long as I can remember. And yes, it was one of those gigantic ones that was the size of a 25" TV and used dials instead of buttons to select both the cooking method and time, but it was still a microwave, and that counted for something back then--not as much as an eight-track, hopefully with quadraphonic sound, but a microwave had to be a close second. At least until the Atari 2600 came out, causing "microwave" to slide down to third. Which is understandable, really, because you can't argue with COMBAT. Really, you just can't.

(Side note: I actually have no idea what quadraphonic sound is, except that's it's something that used to be cool but is now old and funny, like, well, pretty much anything from the 70s. Seriously, The Bee-Gees? Disco? Wall-to-wall carpeting? One-piece jump suits? What were you people thinking?)

But moving on, the second reason the microwave ad was funny was because of what it was being used to cook. I'm too young to know what was pictured being cooked in the first microwave ads in the US--TV dinners maybe, since people back then were apparently too worried about feathering their hair properly to realize that said dinners were not only bad for you, but also, with the exception of that crumbly cherry pie thing, were absolutely disgusting as well
--but I'm pretty sure none of those initial ads pictured someone cooking an entire fish, head and all:

(Side note: Am I the only one who thinks it's odd that a woman who looks like that is using her brand-new Panasonic microwave to cook a fish like that? I didn't think so.)

Also, if I look at that picture and think "Hey, that looks pretty good!" does it mean I've officially been here too long? Yeah, I think so, too. Hmmm, steamy!
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