So Joe and I are possibly the last people on earth who haven't watched "Mad Men." Until now. Someone at school told me that it was an excellent show and thought I would enjoy it. That person was right. Sort of.
Set in the early 1960s (why am I telling you this since I am the last person to watch it?), the show takes place at an advertising agency in Manhattan, and the segments that we have seen so far (about six, I think) revolve around one Dan Draper, his family and neighbors, his coworkers, and their families and coworkers. There is a lot of drinking involved -- in the office, even, and certainly at lunchtime. Nearly everyone smokes. A lot. And the men fool around, as do some of the women. I am fascinated by it.
Because in the early 1960s, I worked as a secretary in an advertising agency in Philadelphia. Nearly everything in the television show is spot on -- the hair styles, the clothing (even the nightgowns and negligees and bras), the slang. But not only that, at the agency where I worked most people smoked (yes, of course I tried -- I wanted to fit in -- but I never could inhale). Martini lunches happened. Some people had bottles of liquor or flasks in the office. "Matinees" occurred. And none of these things seemed to be frowned upon. I worked in advertising for a few years, starting when I was eighteen and moving on shortly before I married at twenty-two. It was fun and it was exciting and oh! so glamorous.
But even then, it felt unreal. It felt like I was in a play rather than living a real life, and because I was less sophisticated than many (at least at the get-go), I flubbed my lines regularly.
Watching "Mad Men" has taken me back to that time and I'm just as fascinated and no less comfortable this time around!