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The Huntress vs. The Headline: “LA Morgue Gift Shop Has Smell Of Death As Business Goes Quiet”

June 28, 2011

Its been a slow few days for headlines, but now The Huntress is back on the agenda, hunting down the new weeks headlines with a renewed vigour. Gee, that sounded good, I almost believed it. It’s about as believably good as some of the top headlines being touted today by our most, ah, trusted news resource providers. Excellent headlines today have included “Captain And Commando: HRH’s Saucy Gag” from The Telegraph.com.au and “Don’t Swim Near Bottomless Beach”  by The Courier Mail. Today’s biggest revelation, however, comes from the highly, erm, credible resource, News.com.au with “Lara Bingle ‘Just Not Bright Enough'”.

That’s ok, I laughed when I read that last one too.

I like today’s headline for a few reasons other than just the concept of being able to buy a coffin shaped couch that I can display as a feature in my very own home. LA County Department of Coroner came up with the idea for the shop “Skeletons In The Closet” as a way to fund anti drink-driving courses for teenagers. The course included a trip to the mortuary and offered participants the opportunity to purchase such souveniours as undertaker boxer shorts, water bottles marked ‘bodily fluids’  and beach towels featuring a chalk outline of a body.

Sadly, LA County Coroner anoraks have since been withdrawn from sale as members of the public were wearing them to gain access to murder scenes.

Rather unfortunately the shop may now be facing closure as it has turned out it is being supported to stay open by the very programme it was supposed to be funding. This devastates me as now I am unsure as to where I am supposed to get a suitcase cleverly disguised as a body bag or novelty toe tags. I must confess I am not so keen for a bodily fluid water bottle as I kind of have a rule at work that I never compare bodily fluids to an ingestible substance. And I think the undertaker boxer short idea is a bit old. Especially as seeing my Xbox user name is ‘Undytaker’.

What I think would be cool is for the shop to start offering more products directed towards teens that serve as a reminder of their visit to the mortuary. Such programmes are an excellent way to educate young people on risk taking behaviour and the seriousness of their potential actions. Programmes such as this are offered all over the world (here in Perth we have the PARTY [Prevent Alcohol and Risk related Trauma in Youth] programme) and having a momento to carry around should offer some benefit to partakers. Why not offer iPhone covers with the chalk body outline, lanyards with toe tags or little coffin purses? Small, practical reminders that teenagers might have close to hand at all times and actually use. And who knows, maybe one day it will remind someone to catch a taxi instead of driving drunk, to not stumble home alone while completely plastered and vulnerable or just to watch out for those around you. The kind of reminders that save lives.


I’m not too sure how welcoming the welcome mat is…

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