Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Cadbury Eggs and the Girls of the 1950s

Finally, someone else understands how important Cadbury Creme Eggs are and how tragic it is that every Duane Reade in NYC is plumb out of them (except, apparently, for the DR by Madison Square Park, but good luck getting to that one, as it's not open on Saturdays or Sundays or weekday evenings -- fat lot of use that store is).

I finally found the eggs in Baltimore this past weekend for sale in front of the cash register in a gas station. The Boyf bought me two, but I should have purchased the whole box of them -- about 20 or so. Then again, I'd probably have eaten all of them by now. So, yeah, maybe it's best that I don't go on a creme-egg bender this year.

ABRUPT TOPIC SWITCH:

I'm becoming increasingly interested in how women lived in the 1950s: icons of beauty, career options, fashion. I don't envy the social constraints or the paltry women's rights or the way everything was hidden and packaged so the neighbors wouldn't see; believe me, I'd rather be here now. But I like the glamour of the era: the pincurls, the pencil skirts, the heels, the pleasantries, the manners, the Scotch after work, the Automat.

I'm not a big shopper -- I actually hate shopping -- but on my way home from the gym one sunny Saturday, I spotted a vintage 1950s gown in an open-air flea market that could have come straight off a mid-century society lady on her way to a Park Avenue party in Manhattan, and I bought it. All $130 dollars' worth of it. I have no idea when I'm ever going to wear it. Sometimes I think my dress would only look good on Reese Witherspoon on the red carpet. And the Boyf says it's a "fat girl's dress," which didn't win him any points that day. But having her in my closet is kind of like having a little piece of the polished image of the decade. I imagine who wore it and why, what she did that night and who she did it with, and how it all ended for her -- why this dress ended up in a Midtown flea market instead of in a museum or with her children, if she had any. This is a picture of it that doesn't quite do it justice:













And here's a lipstick holder (with tiny mirror) I got for about five dollars at an antique shop in the Midwest. I'm guessing the ladies put this on their vanity tables, along with their hairbrushes and handheld mirrors:

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