12 thoughts on “Advice From The Chicago Boyz Blog: Relax and Enjoy A Cocktail”

  1. May as well … as the great Wretchard at Belmont Club observed in one depressing New Year’s post, “Enjoy the champagne – by next year we may be eating the glass.”

  2. I am enjoying watching the series Mad Men on Netflix – for those of us of a certain age I can say that the research into that era – the early 60s (where I am – today Nov 22 ’63) – the research is astounding. People smoked like crazy and drank like fishes – at work – at home….

    But I do like my gin martinis (up and one olive, please)

  3. Great old illustration. Looks like something from the mid-fifties.

    I watched one episode of Mad Men because I’d heard good things about it. Most intelligent writing on TV, etc. I’ve got internet, but I no longer have cable since I find it all so insulting and boring, so I ordered the DVD’s. I watched one episode and that was enough for me. There wasn’t one character I liked, not one I respected, not one I identified with. On top of all that, I thought it was boring.

    I was watching old TV shows on Hulu for a while. The things I found myself watching were Dragnet, Adam-12, and The Dick Van Dyke Show. I liked the straightforward, matter-of-fact approach of the first two. With Dick Van Dyke, I was surprised by how well they actually dealt with the issues of a marriage or a relationship while being funny and without being condescending. And it was obviously written by people who had families and loved them. There was also a basic decency to the show which you just don’t find anymore.

  4. I watched only one episode also. I might be mistaken but doesn’t (or “didn’t”, in a sense) Mad Men (or at least the perspective of these types of characters in the “rat race”) motivate and inform the 60’s cultural “revolutions”?

  5. Grurray, What I was trying to say is that “Mad Men” dramatizes and even epitomizes the attitudes and lifestyle rejected by many of their kids, the boomers.

  6. Tyouth, could be. Since the era was before my time I have to rely on the historical records, second and third hand accounts, and whatever I could pick up on classic rock radio stations.

    On the one hand, having met and worked with enough ad and marketing people, they are as good as anyone to rebel against. On the other hand, many of those counterculture people sure made out pretty well cashing in on their angst and rebellion.

    I intermittently watched the first few seasons of Mad Men. The amorality was relentless, disturbing, and over the top, but the slices of culture were interesting and Draper’s pitches in season 1 were riveting. When they got away from the pitches the soap operas were just too tedious for me to continue.

    We’re a long was past the grey flannel suit days, but I don’t think much has changed. Now they’re calling it experience design and brand management, but they’re still trying to sell the sizzle instead of (or maybe these days, in spite of) the steak.

  7. Another view of it at the time was indeed The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit. Good picture that shows it a bit differently. Or the tangential Sweet Smell of Success.

  8. I don’t believe Mad Men epitomizes 60s culture as a whole. But those guys, living in the produce-or-die pressure cooker of Madison Avenue, really amplified the drinking and smoking era.

    Remember the Christmas Parties? Even Dr Kennedy had to have taken a day to unwind from studies and go crazy.

    People drunk as can be and grabbing the car keys. They still do it of course but I think the conscientiousness level has been raised quite a bit.

    The show either has really great episodes or typical “whose sleeping with who”.

    When they are on their game, you see a window back to the early 60s – the shock of seeing Oswald shot while watching TV, the wild parties, and what I particularly like, the discussion of how to market “new” products.

    In one of the episodes, reminding us of race relations, one of the execs discovers that the Admiral TV (remember those?) is a huge favorite among “Negroes”.

    He pitches an ad campaign to the Admiral execs and is shot down – for fear of the white consumer reaction upon discovery that the blacks like the TV.

    Yesterday I am watching an episode where Jantzen (are they still around?) wants a way to market their “2 piece swim suit” against companies encroaching on their sales with the skimpier bikini.

    Great stuff for those of us who can remember.

    And yes, I pegged that illustration from the late 50s-early 60s.

  9. Last December Make Mine a Mini appeared in the Wall Street Journal
    [I think the link does not require a subscription as it rendered in a Duck-Duck-Go link without – BTW if you don’t like Google and its banner ads to come give DDG a Quack! It render well with alacrity. https://duckduckgo.com]

    The article provides cocktail recipes for reasonable sizes glasses – those used back in the day.

    I love the Hemingway Martini (with a couple of dashes of Fee Brother Orange Bitters-

    Papa knew how to make ’em.

    Hemingway Martini

    1 3⁄4 ounces gin

    1 teaspoon dry vermouth

    Cocktail onion, frozen (keeps it chilled to the end)


    Stir ingredients well for at least a minute with plenty of [cracked] ice. Strain into a small chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with cocktail onion.

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