For those of you struggling to develop an alluring description of your listing, consider the personals ads of the British in The London Review of Books:
–> A woman begins: “I’ve divorced better men than you.”
–> Another says: “Tell me I’m pretty, then watch me cling.”
–> A third writes an ad inspired by a date with someone who named his privates after Asquith, the British World War I prime minister.
Writing an ad to sell something you once must have loved, and inviting strangers in to see it, isn’t so different from a personals ad. What’s different is the sense the British have that something must have gone wrong, when they gave back Hong Kong, or broke up, or moved away. Whenever they’re optimistic, they sound fake, and whenever they sound fake, they sound like us, like Americans, selling real estate. (Thanks to Chris for sending this article along with a quote of what Ron Artest said to Ben Wallace to trigger the 2004 Pistons-Pacers brawl.)