Me and Don Draper

235/365: August 23, Oh Don DraperImage by snacktime2007 via Flickr

I was catching up with my Mad Men watching last night laying on the couch when I figured that Don Draper and I have similar lifestyles. Sure we're 50 years apart in time and half a world in distance, and while we share some key attributes we have different personalities, but…some things never change.

Some of it is superficial, we both like a glass or two and despite the cultural differences then to now have a laissez fair attitude to much that is indulgent. Like him I have women going in and out of my life constantly. I often wonder in quiet moments where so and so got to, or remember a distant redhead I had forgotten, but those moments are few if only because – for good or bad – there's pretty much a revolving door.

I'd like to think that Don is a little more casual and offhand in romantic/sexual matters, but I often find myself surprised after the event how dispassionately, even ruthlessly, I have conducted myself. It's very much a need for him, as it is I think for me – searching for and being with women is a central part of who I am. I may settle on one eventually, and I hope I do, but I couldn't imagine a life without any.

In a way that relates to the next connection. Don Draper is arrogant and often brusque. There is a mystery at the centre of him, and despite his harsh ways something decent. He is strong enough to live by his own lights, without reference to the prevailing whims and cultural mores of society. He is a fascinating character.

I get called arrogant though I dispute it, and while I'm not brusque I can be very blunt. He's opinionated, as I can be, but he's also a throwback in the way of the times, when I am just the opposite. I believe in doing the right thing, though that is not always clear. I'll pay little heed to public opinion and will often find myself happily in opposition to it. I'm not always an easy man, though many think I'm charming. Despite my flaws I think I am a good man. There is more to me than surface appearances.

It's perhaps the last connection which resonated most loudly with me. We are both self-made men. In itself that lends a certain way of being to a man, a slightly different worldview I think. On top of that we are now both on top of our game. He has that easy surety of knowing all the answers are at his fingertips. It is arrogant, but it's also impressive.

I'm more affable I think, and while I know most of the answers are anywhere but to hand I apparently give that same easy impression. In part that comes from confidence: if I do not know then I'll find out. I'm done it before and so I'll do it again and there is nothing beyond me…

I've not made 'it' – nor has he – but knowing you have it in you, that you're striving toward it, gives you a certain sense of entitlement that is hard to deny and, sometimes, hard to disguise.

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