Bidding Farewell to Don Draper.

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Long before AMC ruined my life (and shattered ratings records over and over again,) with “The Walking Dead,” I was- and still am- infatuated with “Mad Men.” My biased love of 1960s fashion and music aside, it’s been a tremendous several seasons of scandal, heartache, history, great one-liners and memorable, touching moments as viewers watched the rise (and multiple downfalls) of the show’s main protagonist- Donald Draper. With clever and compelling writing and an immensely talented, stunning cast- saying goodbye to the show after all this time as it concludes it’s final season over the next couple of months won’t be easy.

This past weekend, after heading into NYC for a few hours, I made a point to stop by the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria to check out their recently unveiled “Mad Men” exhibit, which is open to the public for viewing now through June 14th of this year. Featuring replicas of some of the most famous sets, costumes, props, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at how the show was first conceived by Matthew Weiner and how it was/is written- it’s a must see for any die-hard fans who are planning on spending any time in New York this Spring.

My one gripe with the Museum of the Moving Image is that while most of the other exhibits in the building, some featuring impressive antiques- could be photographed freely (and some could even be touched!)– the “Mad Men” exhibit was strictly off limits to any type of photography at all. Now, I understand why flash photography is prohibited in many places, since it can damage pieces in an exhibit over time and is just distracting to the staff and other visitors in general- but you mean to tell me I can’t snap a cell phone picture of Betty’s stylish kitchen even though I paid the price of admission? Come on. That’s a little ridiculous.

Now, if there’s some sort of logical explanation for this rule that I’m somehow overlooking and anyone wants to enlighten me- feel free, because I’m always open to learning new things. It was just slightly off-putting to go from taking pictures around the museum with no consequence to suddenly getting screamed at as I took an innocent and flash-free photo of Don’s office at the agency (and I had completely missed the very small “NO CAMERAS” sign nearby- I swear!)

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I digress, other than that hiccup- I enjoyed myself. The museum is filled with a lot of really great pieces of cinematic, television, and gaming history. It’s fascinating to see how far we’ve come in terms of technology and entertainment. Even more fascinating is that I can remember playing some of the arcade games that were on display when I was a kid and thought they could never be topped!

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After I stepped out of the museum and grabbed a quick dinner, I started back towards Grand Central Station to catch my train home. Along the way, I ended up at Bryant Park just as the sun was setting and was treated to a spectacular view of the Empire State Building. I ended up staying and just marveling at how beautiful the scenery and the weather was long after the sun had gone down. The flowers may not have started blooming yet, and the trees still look more than bare around the city- but you can definitely tell Spring is in the air.

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