Saturday, November 08, 2008

It's a Mad Mad World

So, I don't watch much television. Chalk it up to the different tastes of my husband and me, or the fact that my studio space is tv-less, or the fact that I can't be sure I will tune in each week on a specific night, but whatever it is I don't keep up with the media world. Sex and the City? Saw it about four times. Seinfeld? Mmm, yeah, I am pretty sure I missed your favorite episode. I am not a tv snob, I don't not watch because I think it rots the brain. I am just busy or distracted or I forget.

But last year I saw a few episodes of Mad Men. Yeah, I know everyone is jumping on the band wagon for this show. The costumes are fabulous, the acting is great and the soap-opera story line is addictive. I saw the first episode (accidentally) and saw a few of the subsequent ones in bits and pieces. Now, post season 2, I am re-watching (or watching for the first time) season 1 courtesy of my husband and his downloading ways. He placed the entire season on my laptop and while I am working on book projects in the studio (really, Terry, I am working on the book!) I am watching Mad Men.

This show does not make me want to dress like a 50s secretary or house wife, as many of the writers at Vogue magazine would have you think. It does not make me long for a pre-feminism, Mom-in-the-kitchen lifestyle. It doesn't even make me want a great old IBM Selectric typewriter. I watch it and, frankly, I want to start drinking heavily*. Not drinking in a post-yoga and Whole Foods kinda way ("oh, I can really taste the terroire in that wine" and "is this organic sugar in the Mojito?") but drinking in the pour-me-another-it's-only-4:00 sort of way. I also have a desire to see my husband in a suit. Something tells me I can get my hair to do that swirly headband flip before the G man is going to give up his Adidas and jeans and wear a suit daily*. The drinking, I guess I could actually manage that. Would my business change if I got a sleek, moderne sofa and a bar in my office and started pouring drinks around noon? Why does no one on the show look like a puffy, smelly alcoholic? Is it the cigarettes? Is it the suits? The girdles and curlers? I am going to work on this problem as I work on the book and maybe, just maybe, I will have an answer for both at the same time.

*relax, folks. The fact that I have a rag-tag collection of actual alcohol in my house prevents me from acting on this urge at 2:00 a.m. We have some cheap-but-interesting wine and Ouzo, Goldschlager, Vodka and Cranberry Liquor. Oh, and a lot of hipster beers. Thank goodness the North Carolina legislature in their infinite wisdom decided to make ABC stores NOT 24 hour operations. Can you imagine if I could get a hold of a fifth of whiskey at this hour? The jewelry would go way downhill.

* #2 G used to work for IBM and when he started it was still a suit-and-tie daily kinda place. We bought a week's worth of white starched shirts and dark wool suits when he got the job and then, two months into the work, they decided to go all Casual Friday, all week. No dice, I said, you have the nice stuff, you will wear the nice stuff. To this day he is pretty sure that is why he did so well there. His co-workers at IBM immediately decided to start wearing wrinkled khakis and old golf shirts and since his wardrobe was either suits and ties or concert tee-shirts and ripped jeans he kept the ties on. I think it was the right choice.