Saturday, August 16, 2008


After the second season premiere of 'Mad Men', Stephen J. Dubner did a bit of investigation into what type of effect the show might have on what passes for product placement in the show. (Let's face it, not many of the products shown in the program probably exist anymore.)

There was quite some focus on a book of poems by Frank O'Hara, "Meditations In An Emergency": great close-ups and Don's voice-over as he read one of the poems

Right after the program, Dubner checked its listing on Amazon. "Meditations In An Emergency" was listed at No. 15,565. Pretty dreary, but probably not unexpected being a fifty year old collection of poems.

But when he checked it again the next morning around 8:30, it was ranked 161! (I just took a look and now it's ranked #2!)

Here's the poem that Don Draper read:
Now I am quietly waiting

for the catastrophe of my personality
to seem beautiful again,
and interesting, and modern.

The country is grey and
brown and white in trees,
snows and skies of laughter
always diminishing, less funny
not just darker, not just grey.

It may be the coldest day of
the year, what does he think of
that? I mean, what do I? And if I do,
perhaps I am myself again.

Toby O'B

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