Once upon a time, Americans were known for having a "strong work ethic" that was a legacy from the pilgrims who
How pathetic is that? So, no; I'm not to be counted among those who will be mourning the end of the Cathy strip once Guisewite lays it to rest next month. I'm one of those who is wondering whatever happened to the myth of the American work ethic? When did high standards, hard work, and success become shameful in our society? Was it a backlash against 1980s films like Mr. Mom and Baby Boom that claimed women could "have it all," glossing over the tough choices women have to make in real life and making them feel guilty if they failed to handle everything as seamlessly as the working moms of the screen?
Maybe that's the real reason for the national pastime of Martha-bashing. Maybe we don't hate her because she does things better than we do, but because she makes it look so EASY when we know that it's really, really HARD. We hate her for having a full staff running each of her households and doing all of her housekeeping for her while she's on television showing us how to properly clean the silverware that we don't own in the first place, for having assistants and creative teams coming up with fabulous ideas for which she seems to take the credit. We hate her for the perceived dishonesty, and for the unfair advantage. But, once upon a time, Martha Stewart was a young single woman from a blue-collar background who worked hard and started her own catering company with a friend. She was good at something, she worked really hard at it, and she turned her domestic interests and aptitude into a multi-million dollar lifestyle brand -- while a lot of other women were lying on the couch eating chocolate while obsessing about their weight, and trying to solve their problems with shopping instead of with good old-fashioned hard work.