The Free Press, Mankato, MN

A few short words in a classified ad can fire the imagination.

Just as every picture tells a story, those little newsprint snippets hint at stories waiting to be told.

Simply put, reading a want ad can leave you wanting more — lusting for the “rest of the story,” as it were.

Of course, that’s not going to happen when people are paying by the word. That’s where imagination enters to fill in the blanks.

It’s free fun to speculate on the stories behind these actual recent ads from local publications:

Free golf balls wanted to send to my husband in Afghanistan.

This is intriguing, given that “golf” and “Afghanistan” are rarely used in the same sentence, except as in “There is no golf in Afghanistan.”

Actually, that’s not quite true. That nation’s only links, the Kabul Golf Club, is a nine-hole grassless, rock-strewn moonscape owned by a former warlord.

Etiquette note for hacking on a course in a war zone: Don’t yell “fore”; yell “incoming.”

Going out of business. Korean mink blankets, reasonable, great Christmas gifts.

The PETA in you says goodbye and good riddance for abusing those cute little Korean mink in that manner.

Not so fast. Korean mink blankets have nothing to do with mink. They’re acrylic fake fur affairs, typically carrying images of animals and wizards and such. They’re like those paintings on black velvet, only in blanket form.

Which may explain how they can put a person out of business.

Queen size mattress/box spring set with oak headboard. Used only one time.

After 30 years of sleeping in separate rooms, Cletus and Mildred decided to have a go at rekindling that ‘ol spark.

Like a playoff team ousted in the first round, they were “one and done.”

Ladies mink coat for sale

Hmmm. If it were a man’s mink coat, the back story might be even better.

No Korean mink here. This is the real deal. Last worn during the Ford administration would be a good guess.

Let’s get rid of that thing, Mom, her adult children said. And Mom concurred.

Piano with bench for sale. Will sell for the cost of this ad.

Or less, I’ll wager. Anyone who’s ever had a piano they wanted to get rid of knows that doing so can be like trying to rid April of rain.

Free, two American Standard bathroom stools in very good condition.

Two toilets gratis? Is this a great country or what. But as the ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius said, “Man who stand on top two commodes is sure to be high on pot.”

Brian Ojanpa is a Free Press staff writer. Call him at 344-6316 or e-mail .

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