Some of you may remember my first Let's Bring Back... column, which was posted two months ago.
In part an homage to Diana Vreeland's adored Why Don't You ...? features, and in part a celebration of the pleasures of eras past, here is the second installment.
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1. Supper clubs. Think El Morocco and the Stork Club. With those discreet curved leather booths, palm trees, and a wonderful old-fashioned ebony telephone on each table.
2. And on that note, let's bring back dancing. "Whatever happened to going out dancing for an evening?" a friend of mine recently lamented. "As in, it's Friday night. Let's go out dancing."
3. Lockets. With pictures inside, of course. They're just so endearing and personal.
4. Discussion societies. Polite ones or impolite ones. It doesn't matter. Let's move away from the chatroom and message boards and into real rooms with three-dimensional people. Anonymous internet postings try to pass for discussion societies but they are absolutely not the same thing. Too often they breed animosity instead of constructive discourse. Talking is good. Real debate is a dying art.
5. Picnics. And picnic baskets. They're hard to carry but in the end they are worth it. Wear linen clothing, set up shop under a tree, bring (and read) books, take black and white pictures.
6. The Carol Burnett Show. Because she was so unbelievably, diabolically hilarious. Stinky-mouth Sarah Silverman doesn't hold a candle in comparison. No one does. Well, maybe Lucille Ball. But no one these days.
7. Fondue. There's nothing like sharing a spitty pot of cheese to break the ice at a dinner party.
8. Aging naturally. Nothing else needs to be said on this one.
9. Wedding portraits. The highly-staged, highly-produced studio ones, a la Cecil Beaton. Taken before or after the wedding, with a gorgeous painted backdrop and dramatic lighting. Black and white, of course.
10. Ice skating. And ice-skating culture. First dates, mittens, hot chocolate, the works. Reference that amazing Alfred Eisenstadt photo of Gloria Swanson ice-skating with her fourth husband if you need inspiration.
11. Train restaurants. Good ones, obviously, in wood-paneled cars, with white linen-covered tables. And crystal, china, etc. Agatha Christie-style.
12. The original Nintendo. Incongruous, I know. But I'm an addict. And the games have an elementary charm of their own. Super Mario Brothers 2 and so on. And they're such a refreshing change from video games that feature hookers and drive-by shootings.
13. Banana combs. Just kidding. Those suckers can RIP.
14. Mahogany phone booths in hotel lobbies. Like the one in The Graduate, and Grand Hotel and every other glamorous old Hollywood movie. They just have a seductive appeal to them; they evoke illicit dealings of all sorts. So Hitchcockian.
15. Solid Gold. As in the TV show. It should be noted that I've added this one at the request of my editor. She enjoyed it so.
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