Cool and cloudy here–I’ve got some arguments and citations to wrangle, geld, and brand today, so here are a few items to mull over while I’m out writing on the range:
- To paraphrase something Roxie said the other day, you know it’s a weird news week when you see a headline about a husband who guns down his wife in broad daylight and you’re relieved that he didn’t assassinate his children, too. (H/t to Ann Bartow and reader Indyanna, who both alerted me to this last night.) This one’s of special interest, folks–the suspect is a Marketing professor at the University of Georgia.
- Actress Bea Arthur, dead at 86. I was a child of the 1970s, but was far too young to have seen Maude in its original run. I remember the reruns of Maude when they came on sometime after the ABC After-School Special and before the M*A*S*H reruns, and I remember thinking that I had never seen a woman like that on TV before. Most TV women were model mothers in the mold of Carol Brady or the daffy mom in Please Don’t Eat the Daisies–when adult women appeared at all, that is. Shows like Hogan’s Heroes and Family Affair dispensed with adult women almost entirely. M*A*S*H’s depiction of women as mostly just sex objects was profoundly alienating–was I supposed to identify with Hawkeye Pierce? The Mary Tyler Moore Show’s Mary Richards was too whiny and simpering. And into this rerun mishmash came Maude–the first adult woman permitted to have confidence in her opinions and be the star of the show, and she was never humiliated for wanting a full life the way that Margaret Houlihan was routinely on M*A*S*H. (See Roxie’s appreciation of Arthur.)
- What do colleges and universities gifted by the mystery multimillionaire benefactor have in common? They’re all led by women. Who’da thunkit? I guess that means the development office at Baa Ram U. shouldn’t wait by the telephone…