Sixty years ago today, Hugh Hefner opened the very first Playboy Club.
It may as well have been 60,000 years ago inasmuch as today’s 25- and 35-year-olds certainly would view the phenomenon as a pre-civilization atrocity. Transported magically back in time, they’d be screaming to high heaven to have the place shut down. By god in heaven, scantily dressed, bust-emphasized, demure-acting Bunnies serving drinks to strutting cocks-of-the-walk — emphasis, BTW, on serving — these days would be tantamount to another Holocaust.
Sure, today’s presentists and obsessive moralists turn pretty much everything into Kristallnacht-redux. But, really, Bunnies?
If we imagine ourselves back in the year 1960 — the year, it should be noted, the combined oral contraceptive, AKA The Pill, was introduced in America — women exhibiting any kind of sexuality was as radical, even revolutionary, as lobbing a Molotov cocktail was nine years later.
And today, we have people editorializing on the courage and pluck of Jennifer Lopez and Shakira for doing, far more artistically and in-your-face, much of what Hefner’s Bunnies did back then. They are pioneers per my readings post Super Bowl LIV. It becomes hard to grasp what is right and virtuous in 2020, although back 60 years ago, the Bunnies were indeed Hefner’s, emphasis, BTW, on the possessive.
Lopez and Shakira today are more their own bosses than Hef’s sub-adult leporēs although we are talking about a pop music recording industry that still, in a lot of ways, refuses to acknowledge the passage of the 13th and 14th Amendments, inclusive.
Here’s a link to the podcast of yesterday’s Big Talk featuring author, reporter, and war correspondent Doug Wissing. His new book, Gentleman in the Shadows: Benjamin C. Evans and the Central Intelligence Agency, is in bookstores now.
The Good & The Bad
Two questions that will be answered in mid-autumn:
- Will the Chicago Cubs win the World Series?
- Will the United States fire the president?
There are many and valid reasons to be both optimistic and pessimistic regarding both questions.
We live in an age when everything that happens, no matter how silly or trivial, is trumpeted as breaking news or is somehow positioned as horribly alarming. Accordingly, there remains in me a minuscule but nagging suspicion that the coronavirus story somehow fits into that corporate news model.