Forget the Dictionary
begin with, forget the dictionary.
You have to move your consciousness into the world of advertising - just the
same way as language is used in very different ways in the ads you see on TV
(did you know that "no other toothpaste cleans better than Acme toothpaste"
really means "Acme cleans exactly the same as all other toothpastes?"
"So a smart showman would not advertise his show or item as a gaff?"
That is correct, it's not a word the public is supposed to ever hear or see.
"Alive - having life; living; existing; not dead or lifeless. Plain and simple
must be breathing?" That is correct. Although the exhibit inside, a human with
the claw like hands of 'limb reduction disorder,' may be very different from the
banner illustration depicting a
lobster with a human head with the word 'ALIVE' in big letters. This also
differentiates your exhibits from those consisting of mannequins or photographs
(which can be billed as THE WORLD'S STRANGEST FREAKS PAST AND PRESENT, which
pretty much guarantees that you're not going to see Chang and Eng in person, but
only becomes an issue if you come outside and complain that there are no live
"Authentic - not false or copied; genuine; real." So if you say authentic it
should be the one and only original or one of the one and only originals if
there are multiples? I think language is used very flexibly in this case, on the
lot. 'Authentic' usually is a CLAIM, not a guarantee, and if nobody can prove
that is isn't authentic then you can get away with claiming it. Or you might
comfort yourself by remembering that the fake two-headed baby, made of rubber,
is a realistic representation of actual examples from nature.
"Fake - anything made to appear otherwise than it actually is; counterfeit. So
if it is stated as Fake it means not the original, authentic, alive but maybe a
gaff even tho it is real?" Who cares?
When did a banner ever say "Fake!"???