New York City beckons and the apartment hunting has begun. We’re hoping to land in Manhattan in May or June of this year. Deep breaths. I draw inspiration from working women portrayed on film and on television, who show how you can love a city, this city, while you love what you do, and just love life, people, and the world around you.
Alice Mayberry. Office worker Alice is a small town import to the Big City in The Clock (1945). Vincente Minnelli directs Robert Walker as a soldier on 48-hour leave (and about to embark to places unknown during WWII) and Judy Garland in her first non-singing dramatic role. The movie is populated with character actors in small roles (Keenan Wynn, James and Lucile Gleason, Moyna McGill — Angela Lansbury’s mother! — and scores more), and scenes in iconic New York locations such as studio recreations of the old Pennsylvania Station, the Astor Hotel lobby, the zoo in Central Park, and the Natural History Museum. The city itself is a character that embraces and enables our two main characters Joe and Alice to find one another during one short military leave.
Molly Dodd. In the late 1980s while I lived in Ann Arbor, Michigan (during the first season of The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd on NBC before it moved to the then-new Lifetime cable channel) I yearned to live in the Upper West Side of Manhattan along with Molly and her pals. Her mother, her ex-husband the jazz sax player, her bookstore owning boyfriend, her cop boyfriend, her intriguing neighbors, her Irish doorman, her adventures every day on the city streets. The show was shot in Manhattan (1987-1991) and was cast with Broadway and Off Broadway acting masters — from Blair Brown herself to regular and semi-regular appearances by Victor Garber, David Strathairn, Nathan Lane, John Glover, J. Smith-Cameron, John Pankow and oh so many more. The series is a little bit Seinfeld (often about little things, not quite “nothing” but perhaps a chance meeting), a little bit Mary Tyler Moore Show, and all its own.
The place, the romance, and the realities await.