Thursday, October 1, 2009

That's mad, man

All of the "Mad Men" I've been watching lately is starting to affect my behavior.

Over the past 10 days or so, I've gobbled up all 13 episodes in Season One and all 13 episodes in Season 2. I could kick myself for tearing through the first two years of "Mad Men" so greedily. Now I have to stew for about nine months and wait for the third season —now being broadcast on AMC— to be released on DVD, unless I decide to genuflect and kiss the ring of Time Warner Cable so I can watch the show on AMC each week.

I have no desire to add another monthly expense to my budget. So the best I can do to keep the "Mad Men" vibe going is incorporate elements of the show into my life.

I set up a bar in my office this week, just like all of the boys of Sterling Cooper have in their offices. Instead of liquor, however, my bar is stocked with Extra-Strength Liquid Tylenol, which I need to make it through my workday just as much as Don Draper and Roger Sterling and all of the rest need gin and scotch to get through theirs.

I have a feeling that if anyone at Sterling Cooper drank a cocktail the cherry-red color of Extra-Strength Liquid Tylenol, he would be considered to be a little light in the loafers. Maybe my co-workers think that about me at 11 and 4, when I take a pause in my day to pour myself a shot glass of Tylenol and pour it down my G-tube.

They haven't seen anything yet. This is only the beginning of the Don-Draperization of Paul Serchia. Over coming weeks, I plan to swap my backpack for a leather briefcase and get fitted for a hat. I may even start wearing ties and raincoats, dye my hair jet-black and slick it back with greasy kid's stuff and aggressively utilize my eyebrows to convey emotion.

Today I'm bringing an ice-bucket into work, so I can serve Extra-Strength Liquid Tylenol chilled when visitors wander into my office, and swizzle sticks, so I can stretch the shelf-life of each bottle of Tylenol by diluting it with water before I offer it to guests.

Extra-Strength Liquid Tylenol ain't cheap, not even when I buy the CVS knockoff. Don Draper drinks only the good stuff, but he has an expense account and would not last two days working for a nonprofit, like I do.

If Draper himself ever walked into my office, hopefully I would be able to keep it together long enough to pour some acetaminophen in a shot glass and place it in his hands.

Prodigious consumption of Tylenol wouldn't do Don Draper's liver any favors, no more than it's doing mine. But that's what keeps us Mad Men just a little mad.

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