Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Mad Men

Don Draper: Let me ask you something, what do woman want?
Roger Sterling: Who cares?
From Mad Men Season 1, Episode 2: "Ladies Room"

Cartoon drawn from an actual New York scene
If you aren't watching AMC's Emmy award-winning Mad Men you are missing out on some very fine television.

On its official website the show is described as "Set in 1960s New York, the sexy, stylized and provocative AMC drama Mad Men follows the lives of the ruthlessly competitive men and women of Madison Avenue advertising, an ego-driven world where key players make an art of the sell."

The "Mad" in Mad Men is short for Madison Avenue and it has spawned a series of spoofs, my favorite being Meshugene Men where the tem's challenge is to sell mayonnaise to gentiles. I like the way the falling-down mad man in the credits is holding a bagel.

I'm a real Mad Men fan. If there was a fan club I'd probably join it. I love thinking about Mad Men - I've certainly known my fair share!

I once went out with a man who shaved his face with a wind-up clockwork razor. I kid you not. And this was before we knew there was an energy crisis.

That was some time ago and it's the only thing I remember about him. He must have had something going for him, god knows what it was though.

I thought of him yesterday when I was writing about father-of-the-person-who-had-been-going-to-attend-the-rehab-back-in-January - the man-who-doesn't-believe-in-washing-machines. It struck me that there are some very strange men in this world, who go through life accepted as normal people.

It's not that I attract these men. I know of other women who have hitched up with men with strange habits. One woman I know was married to a man who communicated with her through the cunning placement of meat pies.

My own mother looked up an old boyfriend once when she was well into her sixties and discovered he lived in a tree. She was shocked. I used to have a photo of him pre-tree days and he was a most handsome and well-balanced looking man. One never knows.

The man-who-doesn't-believe-in-washing-machines once decided to break up with his girlfriend when he was stopped at an intersection. "If the light changes to green in one minute," he was known to relate, "I'd decided to ask her to marry me". It didn't. Lucky lady. Saved by the light.

Another man I knew once ate a Melbourne tram. Not in one sitting of course. It took him some time and he used a chain-saw for the really tough parts. But still ...

Then there was the Swedish Mad Man I met a couple of months ago. You can read about him in You Probably Think This Blog Is About You, Don't You who seemed to think that Australian beaches were something to be sneered at, and that Australians had no culture. How mad can you get!

At one stage I even thought that my own bro was mad. When he bought a MAC and put it on a table covered with green felt in the center of a room. It was (apart from the table) the only object in the room and it was dimly lit by a soft green light suspended directly above it. I suspect he made rice offerings to it every morning. But I've since changed my mind. There's nothing wrong with buying a MAC, Timothy.

These people make the apple-eater seem almost normal.

Who is the maddest Mad Men I've ever known? It's a hard call.

Next week I might do "Mad Women". Watch out gals!

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