I loved I Dream Of Jeannie when I was little. Everyone else seemed to be in love with Jeannie’s Master, Major Tony Nelson, but I was in love with her bottle. I coveted that bottle. I wanted her swingy ponytail and harem pants and fabulous cleavage, too, but I would have given up the ponytail and pants to have that bottle.
As a little girl I always liked building things: creating multi-storied buildings out of stacked cardboard boxes, small scale houses out of scrap wood, and Jeannie’s bottle out of shampoo bottles. I desperately wanted to live in a bottle just like hers, and holy wow, did I spend a lot of hours in the bathtub daydreaming about that. First you need to empty the bottles, though, and by the end of every bath I’d be sitting in thick opaque soapy water, surrounded by empty shampoo bottles and floating bits of the labels I had peeled and scrubbed off. I had a lot of skin rashes. We went through a lot of shampoo.
The old Head and Shoulders shampoo bottle had a long slender neck, flared out widely about two-thirds down, and quickly tapered back to a narrow base, and it was as close to Jeannie’s bottle as I could get. This didn’t stop me from emptying all the other bottles, too, but Head and Shoulders was the best, and the thick turquoise shampoo made for better bath soup.
The interior or Jeannie’s bottle would have been my perfect habitat, and she always wore such cool pajama sets while she lounged around on her circular velvet couch; I wanted that for me, too. I loved the opulent Arabian Nights-gone-girlie look of the decor, and it made me so sad that I couldn’t get myself and furniture into that shampoo bottle.
The only drawback to being Jeannie, as far as I could see, was Major Nelson. Even as a child, the whole having-a-Master-thing seemed a bit sexy to me, but Major Nelson was kind of a dick. I liked Major Healey, Tony Nelson’s Army engineer test-pilot friend . He was a bit of a playboy, but he was fun and he was nice, and I always wondered why Jeannie didn’t fall in love with him, instead. Major Healey would never have ordered her into the bottle and stuck the top on to control Jeannie’s shenanigans which made life so interesting. Major Healey always went along with Jeannie’s bad ideas, and I like that in an Army Major.
I loved the outfits, I loved the martini drinking, and I loved Jeannie’s cleavage, but I still wish Major Healey had been the one to open Jeannie’s bottle when the astronauts found it in the ocean. He would have been an awesome master, and then Jeannie could have invited Major Healey down onto her velvet couch in her bottle and called him Master and kissed his face off. Because that is the proper thing to do with Army Majors.