Posts Tagged ‘domesticity’

Dear compatriots in soporific studies,

One drawback to working from home is that the couch always looks far more attractive than the computer screen. I find myself contemplating this dilemma today on the arrival of our long-awaited sofa, named by its manufacturers “Rachel,” not to mention our new platform bed, named “Elan.” That’s right, Rachel and Elan–what a lovely Jewish couple!

So in honor of the marriage of Rachel and Elan, I thought I’d point you today to a trio of films on home improvement, from the always astonishing Prelinger Archive–an online collection of ephemeral films.

In the first, from 1940, “Let Yourself Go,” we get a tour of a mattress store–a kind of proto-Sleepy’s–where everyday people try to find the secret to a good night’s rest. One man, for instance, has “been fighting his pillow for years,” the narrator says. “So far he’s lost every round.”

Let Yourself Go

In the second, from 1958, “Something New From Something Old,” a young couple named “Jack and Jill” turn their sad NYC tenement apartment into a luxurious haven, all to the tune of “Almost Like Falling in Love.”

Somethign New

But lest you remain unconvinced the importance of domestic improvement, watch this harrowing film from 1954, “The House in the Middle,” which shows how houses in various states of repair and disrepair would hold up under atomic attack. Because when the bomb drops, you’ll want your paint job to remain unblemished.

House in the Middle

Happy homemaking to all!

Yours in domestic bliss,


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