Last night I met an old friend for happy hour. We've known each other about 15 years, and she qualifies as one of my oldest friends in the area. We get together for happy hour now and then, not nearly often enough, when our schedules and energy levels allow. We met last night at 5:30 p.m., because she doesn't like to stay out late anymore. She's a few years younger than I am.
We talked work, family, she had to see pictures of my granddaughters and I asked about her daughter, we caught up on stuff, and then somehow, while talking about our work situations, she got off on the subject of tattoos.
She works in a very conservative law firm and has a couple of tats herself, but went off at length about a young co-worker who is working on a full sleeve of tattoos, and another just got one centered on her collarbone, and just added something down each ankle. The office has a no visible tattoos policy, as do a lot of more stuffy (and higher paying) employers in the area, and we tut-tutted for a bit about how these young ladies are tattooing themselves out of the running for a lot of higher-paying jobs with good benefits. (One now has to cover up so much, she's limited to high necklines, 3/4 sleeves and slacks every day, no matter the heat.) As I said, my friend has a couple of tattoos herself, which she mildly regrets as the color is already fading, but they are in locations that can only be seen if she's in a tank top or a bathing suit.
And even as we were having this conversation, I was thinking about how this is a stuffy old person point of view, as these young people with lots of tattoos see this as a non-issue and will also be moving into management roles over the next few years. We were a couple of old ladies, tut-tutting about those crazy young people these days, while eating our early bird appetizers at a lame chain restaurant. I think it's safe to say our partying days are behind us, and neither of us particularly minds.
And as our wild night out broke up before 8 pm, with me suffering from indigestion from the fried appetizers we'd consumed and deeply regretting the calories, I realized I'm very content with this old lady stuff, even while I laugh at the way we must have sounded to people around us. "Did you hear those two old biddies going on about tattoos?"
And it firmly cements me in the world of grandma-ness that as I was driving to my very early bird happy hour, my grandmothering counterpart in NC sent me a video of Willa.
Being an old lady comes with benefits.
I do wish they'd feed that child now and then.