Is Business Getting Girly? Don Draper Reports

July 23 2010

As a rule I’m a ‘never-before-noon’ man. But one morning recently there it was, on top of the spread of magazines laid out for me on my desk. Cover story of The Atlantic Monthly, the magazine founded by Ralph Waldo Emerson and some cronies over a few drinks at the Parker House Hotel in Boston in 1857. Four words. “The End Of Men.”

I glanced at the clock—11:15. But I picked up the ice tongs anyway, put two cubes in an old-fashioned glass and drowned them in three fingers of Chivas. I broke the filter tip off a fresh Marlboro, put the business end between my lips, rolled the wheel on my Zippo, and settled back in the Eames chair. I started thinking. Thinking hard.

I should have seen it coming. The Pill, Title IX, The MBA degree. Wake up, Don. Promoting Peggy Olson was like unleashing a typhoon—Pandora’s Box. I guess I missed the train, the one from Ayn Rand’s thrusting spires to Gloria Steinem’s G Spot. Is that G for Gloria, by the way? This country was built by The Salesman, dammit, one lousy skyscraper at a time. I called my secretary in.

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