Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Wednesday Witterings

‘Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears’ – William Wordsworth 1770-1850
Last night there was a referral from Oregon- that always used to mean dear Hoss had been.

I watched ‘Mad Men ‘last night – the acclaimed series set in the early sixties (although those cinched waists with protuberant bosoms and bums are more fifties in my recollection) – a bygone age where incessant smoking, drinking, racism, sexism, homophobia and adultery are rife. Their attention to detail is usually accurate and there was a scene that puzzled me.

The hero with his wife and children had just finished a picnic in a grassy area; as they were packing up the hero tossed his beer can away and his wife shook the detritus – not just crumbs - , wrappings etc onto the grass and left it. I don’t remember such blatant litter louting here. Have I forgotten it and was it so in America? The series brings back some uncomfortable memories of what it was like to be a woman then, so clearly progress had been made.

One of my gifts lately has been a new mouse to go with my bright green jelly (protects my wrist). The mouse is black with a red light underneath and apparently there is a wheel – great for scrolling and I’m told it’s optical ‘so dust should not be a problem.’ Dust – in my house!!!!

An agent told me the other day that she gets over 300 submissions a week and can only take on two writers per year. Not for the faint- hearted this lark, but nobody said it would be easy.


savannah said...

i still haven't watched madmen! the littering probably happened because back then there were people who were paid to clean up the parks! xoxo

sablonneuse said...

Is there someone to whom all your avid readers could send a petition? There must be a fair number of us waiting for your book so sales would be guaranteed.

kenju said...

Ah, but Pat, tell that agent she hasn't read YOUR stuff. She should do herself a favor!

I only watched Mad Men once or twice, but I agree with you, and I don't remember littering being that bad in the 50's and 60's. I do remember people tossing cigarette butts down just anywhere, and throwing paper cups out the car windows. Thank God that stopped - for the most part.

Shane said...

Cinched waists, protruberant bosoms and bums... you sell it well. I'm in.

Leah said...

The intriguing comment about stream-of-consciousness brought me here! But no "riverrun," rather a well-written post and some intimations of immortality...

As for the littering, I always do think of the Amurrican folks from that era as having more of a veneer of civility over their uncivilized ways. Perhaps it wasn't true after all! Interesting.

Leah said...

Aha! I've looked back and found your stream-of-consciousness. It's really wonderful! Being the fanatical "Ulysses" fan that I am, what a delight. No apologies to Molly needed, I'm sure.

Jimmy Bastard said...

An exciting author, and a very modest one over her own good looks as well.

I'm looking forward to the first book signing.

PI said...

Savannah: I never thought of that. How very anti-social.

Sandy: I just have to keep ploughing on and hopefully one day your patience will be rewarded:)

Judy: do watch Mad Men if you get a chance. it's the sort of series America excels at and it will bring back memories of that era.

Shane : for the acting - of course:)

Leah: delighted! Kind words from a Joyce girl. And lovely to have someone know what the hell I'm talking about.

PI said...

Jimmy: the part of Lancashire I came from modesty was for self protection. Stick you head above the parapet and you'd be shot down in flames. I MUST stop talking in cliches.

Anonymous said...

Is Mad Men this an American series!? Word game with Ad men,une references advertising on the men that worked to Madison Avenue. From which the impossibility to translate the title in French.

At our place, the series is broadcasted on TPS Star. A strength nostalgic style, the fortunately surpassed morals!

Mary Witzl said...

I think people DID litter as much as they do now back in the fifties, but there was far less fast food and packaging back then, so it wasn't as much of a problem. Styrofoam was not commonly used as a packaging material, for instance, and they used a lot more waxed paper, which eventually breaks down, than they did plastic wrap.

The big bosoms and bums, though -- they've just gotten all the bigger.

john.g. said...

DUST, DUST! You tell me where they are, i'll get 'em!

Mrs Pouncer said...

Pat, you would probably have a conniption fit if you saw me today. I am wearing a Hardy Amies suit which my mother bought in '65 (black boucle, white piping), fishnets and slingbacks. Backcombed bouffant like the first Mrs Ringo Starr and a Constella handbag. It's not fancy dress, it's A Look, and it's so addictive that, for the past 5 years, I haven't been able to resist. I resemble an astronaut's wife, as Dr Maroon is mean enough to point out. In Reading, they just about bear it, but in Maidenhead people stare. I have now expanded this fetish to crockery. Last week I bought a sputnik vegetable dish on eBay. Help me.

PI said...

Cratree: yes it is American. You know how execrable my French is. I would translate it as Les Hommes Fou.
I must tell my son who lives if France that he can see it.

Mary: yes fast food has a lot to answer for both with litter and big Bs And Bs. Curves were definitely de rigeur then and I - skinny as I used to be, wore a waspie to make my hips look bigger, Waspie -a little waist corset - used to give me bags under my eyes - I suppose the extra fat had to go somewhere:)

PI said...

John G: my hero!

Mrs P: in spite of an aversion to boucle I'm sure you look quite distinctive in the ensemble. On the rare occasions I show my legs they are usually encased in black fishnet. The hairstyle reminds me of my stylist in Tunbridge Wells who used to describe the style as lacquered to hell and back- combed to b-----y.
As long as you don't intend to wear the sputnik vegetable dish - no harm done. Please don't mensh Dr Maroon - when you and he get together I understand what they mean by 'Mad as a box of frogs.'

apprentice said...

Yes, you will get there. Are you including photographs in your submission? I would , as you have some crackers and it would set the book apart. People do love that period, the sense of style and the elegance.

Re your take on the Mad Men, I feel much the same about all the dramas on the 1970s - yes aspects were tough, but we had bad fashion that was great fun and we could still take risks eg like hitch hiking - my now husband and I got from Aberdeen to Brittany for nothing in the summer of '75, across a country scorched by a heat wave.

apprentice said...

PS Savannah so glad to see you posting missus!

R. Sherman said...

Congrats on the new mouse.

As for littering, it tended to be more prevalent here back in the Sixties, although my parents kept trash bags in our car.


PI said...

Anna: I haven't included them so far a they are fairly specific about what they require. However I am mentioning them now.

I was in France in that heat wave but in the Langedoc - up to no good:)

Randall: just what I would expect from you parents and any who loved the countryside.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Someome may have already said this but in point if fact, the first year of "MAD MEN" takes place in 1960....So it was just on The Cusp of the end of the 50's....I find their attention to detail in every way really extraordinary. I LOVE this show.
And YES, we were just that indifferent to what "littering" meant back then, here in the U.S. In fact, I am ashamed to say, I still smoked in the early 60's and I would empty the FULL Ashtray in my car by opening the window on my side and just dumping it all out---it didn't matter where I was---A Parking Lot or a street or The Freeway...! It seems totally foreign and unthinkable to me now....HOW COULD I HAVE BEEN SO CARELESS????? OY!
I must say, you would be amazed what I find lurking across the street---thrown from cars----Beer Cans, Soda Cans, Paper & Plastic Cups and other unmentionables....So it seems Still, there are people who just don't care....!

The Second season of "MAD MEN" takes place about a year and a half later....I think it is a SUPERB show....Beautifully written and beautifully scted, too....I cannot wait for Season 3 to start here...I think in June.

Do you get "RESCUE ME" there? That is a wonderful show too...Denis Leary....It is funny and very poignant and 'true to life' in many ways.....Look for it, my dear.

I just read some very interesting articles in THE SONDHEIM REVIEW about a revival of "A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC" which is just moving to the West End fro The Menier Chocolate Factory. It sounds like a WONDERFUL Production...! They begin their previews on SAturday, March 28th....I believe it is at Wyndham's..?? Though I may be mixing it up with another Sondheim show on right now, too....But it is definately opening at one of the Big Theatre's there in The West End!
If I could just "Beam Me Up, Scottie", I could come visit you and go see this Trevor Nunn production,! Wouldn't that be fun, Pat?

PI said...

Naomi: I think Savannah is right when she says people were paid to clear up the mess. Of course no-one can afford that now.
Re 'Mad Men' I'm watching the second series now. Like 'The Sopranos' the opening music is haunting and evocative and really sets the scene. The main character is so convincing I can't imagine him in the 21st century. Very dishy!
I will look out for 'Rescue Me'. American series - on the whole are well worth watching.
'A little Night Music is transferring to the Garrick Theatre. Maureen Lipman is in it - another feisty actress. Did you ever sing 'Isn't it rich?'? I can imagine it.
We'll have to make it a cyber theatre trip. I'll bring the chocs:)

Guyana-Gyal said...

That litter gave me the shivers, [in a bad way], I fight daily to not see it around town here.

Thanks for the reminder about getting published. I've been meaning to post something I found on the net, about it. It's heartening, will keep writers going.

As the love of my life keeps reminding me, all you need is just ONE publisher, keep trying. So Pat, take his advice from me.

PI said...

GG: I'll look forward to that post - as I do all of yours. Naomi told me her friend who is a star was turned down by 70 publishers before she got published. If really gifted people like RC Sheriff and Ms Rowling persevere so shall I - to the end:) I can't match their brilliance but I can attempt their didilgence.