White Collar Reset: Christmas in Connecticut, Scrambling for Cash

A couple weekends ago on our usual stretch-a-buck date night, my wife and I watched a freebie movie on cable. Alas, it wasn't porn, but that seasonal chestnut Christmas in Connecticut. A screwball comedy classic released during the last days of the war in 1945, the film stars Barbara Stanwyk as a young single magazine writer living a lie.

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From her tiny Manhattan apartment, Stanwyk's character writes a column about her make-believe life in Connecticut, complete with a fieldstone manor, loving husband and a newborn. Complications arise when the publication's owner, who's as much in the dark as her readers, invites a wounded serviceman to her place to experience what a "real home" is like during the holidays. Stanwyk's increasingly far-fetched attempts to keep the charade going, even as she falls in love with her dashing guest of honor, provides the hilarity and just goes to show: Maintaining appearances in Connecticut is a decades-old tradition that holds up remarkably well.