Mad Men at Esalen

Mad Men at Esalen

Spoiler Alert! If you haven’t seen the series Mad Men yet, and particularly the series finale, stop reading immediately. Go and watch all 92 episodes (it will probably take you about 4 months) and then get back to me.

If you have seen the finale, you may not have realized that the retreat center that Don/Dick went to with his free-spirited semi-niece Stephanie is Esalen. That’s right, the same Esalen that gave birth to Esalen massage.

I loved the show, and thought the ending was the most perfect ending imaginable. (Even better than the weepy future-deaths finale of Six Feet Under and the ordinary-family-life ending of The Sopranos.) Of course it makes perfect sense that Don Draper would go to Esalen, deal with his issues (people really do that in the encounter groups there—I’ve seen it, I’ve done it), and then find peace meditating on the grass. A creative peace that leads to mid-meditation inspiration and the greatest commercial of all time—Coke’s “I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing.” Of course he came out of retirement, right?

I too have had amazing creative inspiration while on meditation retreats in California, though in my case, it was my entire master’s thesis on green funerals. Not quite as catchy as the Coke commercial.

So, to my Esalen massage clients, I just wanted to let you know that I’m still thinking of you from the road, and that the final episode is realistic—this kind of thing happens at Esalen all the time! And it happens to people on my massage table too.

I’m working on creative projects while away, and just did this tribute to Mad Men as part of my Another New York Love Affair video series. Check it out! Save