JFK: Um, did you really all have hourglass figures?
Mom: Yep, we really did. We wore body-hugging skirts, blouses with bows at the neck, and suits, if we could afford them. Women, even secretaries, wore suits. But mostly skirts and blouses and dresses. It was not very comfortable, especially sitting in those skirts. They would ride up, of course. But we all dressed very formally, always. Men: suit and tie, and that’s a proper suit, no jackets and slacks. Women: girdle, stockings, high heels, always. No sneakers to walk to work; we would not have been caught dead in them.
JFK: What was the office environment like?
Mom: Sexual overtones were in the air, like breathing. It was the culture, not just at Playboy. Women were objects of desire, period. However, this was the office of a highly successful magazine and we were expected to work well and professionally and we all did. There were, as I remember, five of us, including the head secretary. We sat in a line at our desks in a large room and the ad men’s offices opened behind us. Each ad man had a small office, but with a window overlooking Park Avenue, a nice desk, chairs for visitors. We each worked for two or three ad men directly. There was flirting, innuendo, double entendre all the time, but rarely was it serious. It became serious only if the woman allowed it in the work place and this hardly ever happened. Not at Playboy while I was there, but certainly somewhere, and abortions were illegal. I knew one young woman who flew from New York City to Mexico for one.