Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Harpo Sells Vodka

This is another item from my collection--a 1961 magazine ad for Smirnoff Vodka, featuring Harpo. Harpo wasn't much of a drinker, but I suppose he saw this as an opportunity to publicize his autobiography, not to mention garnering a few bucks from Smirnoff for the endorsement. The fine print under the picture reads, "Harpo Marx, noted comic and musician, authors a new best-seller, 'Harpo Speaks' at book stores."

In his book, Harpo said the only alcohol problem he had was that he didn't much care for the stuff. Early in World War II, Chico gave Harpo a hot tip that liquor would be rationed, prompting Harpo to go to a wholesale distributor and order a cellar full of booze.  He then realized at his rate of consumption of about "three mild social drinks per week," his supply should last "until the year 2419 A.D." He further noted, however, that "it was a commodity I had no trouble getting rid of."

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