"I have a hot tooth."
"Go to the Cloisters without me."
"I consider it a success: you didn't have to go a whole day wihout calling me an idiot."
"Why is this so hard? You only have to write 120 words and fifteen of them are Ajax."
"You just hate him because he voted for Goldwater."
"Will you take LSD with me?"
"You're really drunk. Sleep it off."
"This is what happens when you have the artistic temperament without being an artist."
Doors open, doors close, and an Old Fashioned with a beautiful stranger at a luxe Midtown bar is the way the evening ends.
The one universal truth linking all episodes of all seasons of "Mad Men" is that the client is always a shmuck.
"$50,000." That's the sum, the reccurent sum -- what a night with Joan is worth, or the life of Lane, or the collateral for a partnership in the firm, or the check Don gives to the angry widow. Fifty grand was a lot of money in those days. The most valuable stamp in the world was worth $50,000. Ernest Hemingway's story "Fifty Grand" was being read by aspiring writers in science-oriented high school programs in the post-Sputnik era of high angst. Sandy Koufax held out for one hundred thousand dollars. That was the really magic number in those days. That was the Joe DiMaggio number.
Peggy has come a long way, baby -- she's off to Virginia, slim -- and Don's brother is going to "hang around. Get it?" Hang on for dear life, dear death, dear Adam. The suicide of one brother is the suicide of all. Dick Whitman gets to celebrate himself. His life's a toothache, and Canadian Club's the palliative. Meanwhile, lots of people get to sock Pete in the jaw. Megan gets the part of Beauty in the "Beauty and the Beast" commercial for Butler Shoes. Who do you suppose is the beast in her life? And Roger hangs his hopes on the nudity of his life in bed with his French-speaking mistress, mother of his partner's wife.
Don, Peggy, and Ginsberg tell me that they dig two commercials on TV right now. The two, as paraphrased by me, who am too lazy to dig up the videos, are
(1) << A spot against cable tv, because the cable guy won't come, so you look out the window, and when you look out the window, you see things you shouldn't see, and when that happens you have to disappear, and when you disappear you have to dye your eyebrows white, and when you do that you end up attending your own funeral as a guy named Phil Schiffly. Don't be Phil Schiffly. Switch to our dish or satellite or whatever the hell we're offering instead of cable. >>
Ginsberg said, "The visuals are funny, but the genius part of the commercial is the use of the name Phil Schiffly. (Oh, and btw, Phil Schiffly is the name of a guy who used to work in the ad agency's office before he screwed the pooch.)"
(2) << Car commercial. Attractive lady applies lie detector test to regular guy in shirt and tie. Nondescript q-and-a until she asks him, "Are you wildly and uncontrollably attracted to me?" He, emphatically: "No." Lie detector needle jumps all over the place. "Good," she says. "It's working." >>
At the bar waiting for his Od Fashioned, Don tells me he likes the car commercial because it takes the focus away from the car. "How much Bud would you sell if people tasted the stuff?" Then he excused himself to talk to the woman who approached asking him to light her fire. Come on baby light my fire. Doors open, doors close, and The Doors should sing. Hey, man, it's 1967. But James Bond is still in power, and "You Only Live Twice" is the song of the movie of the day. Don is on lifetime number two right now. The experience called "Vietnam" has not quite happened in the suburbs or on the New Haven line, the one-bedrooms in the East 60s, and the luxury flats in Midtown. And the news is just months away. -- DL