Miss Darcy was invited to lunch by Lorraine Farrington, one of the Daughters of the Sweet’s Racing Club (DSRC). She had invited five of us for lunch. A half dozen women who had known each other for thirty years. Our friendship had been forged in the crucible of bake sales, girl scout outings, church suppers and all the causes and committees from hell that made up the tapestry of our lives. As Historian I was compelled to take notes of the meeting. Although it was a farrago of nonsense as they would say in the Regency period, I present it here for your enjoyment:
“He was young and handsome. We met in the meat section of the grocery store. Just to the left of the pork shoulders.”
Lorraine was an accountant and details were important. She blotted her tearstained cheeks with a crumpled lunch napkin as the rest of us waited for her to divulge details on this crisis meeting.
“Cut to the chase.” Tish was an efficiency expert. Her closet organization made the rest of us weep. “What did he say?”
Lorraine bit her lip. “He asked me how to cook a beef roast.”
We sucked in our collective breaths and exchanged pitying glances. The ultimate insult.
“When did it happen?” I asked.
“One night, I went to bed a trim, interesting, sexy woman and I woke up with elephant thighs, a low IQ and opinions similar to my mother.”
“Men don’t hit on us anymore.” Coming from an ultra-feminist, Gail’s statement was a surprise. A few years ago she’d tried to run down a man whose only offense was whistling at her. “All we have to look forward to are the golden years.”
“Bite your tongue,” Dixiebelle said. She had bronzed her high school pompoms and hung them on the wall of the den beside her husband’s football trophies. To her, high school was the golden years.
“Face it. Our best days are gone.” Maggie looks at life realistically, a virtue some of us consider highly overrated. “We’re faceless, aging seniors.”
“I’m not.” Dixiebelle had a postage stamp conveniently covering the date of birth on her driver’s license. “I’m much closer to Generation Y.”
“Nobody’s quibbling over dates. It’s the concept.” Lorraine always tried to get us to look at the big picture. “The world is created for and run by the young. That used to be us. We used to make policies. Now we talk about hot flashes, knee replacements and 401 Ks.”
“Soy and real estate.” Tish, ever efficient, talked as if she were paid by the word. “All you can count on now.”
“It all comes down to sex. It’s an integral part of life,” Gail said. “When did we stop talking about sex?”
The Tell-all Story of Lorraine’s Ancestor, Lord Andrew Farrington.
“Talking is all we do lately.” Maggie’s brows were bunched together as if she were in pain. “When I taught high school, there was more action in the parking lot than I’m seeing these days. I’ve almost forgotten how.”
“Want me to explain anything?” Dixiebelle had just remarried and had the kind of secret smile that made you want to slap her.
“Keep to the subject,” Gail said. “We’ve become invisible. No one wants our opinions, they just want us to buy things and stay in the background.”
“We used to have power. We used to be movers and shakers,” I said. “Now the only things shaking are my upper arms.”
“I don’t want to have buns of steel or dress like a teenage rock star for someone to take notice of me,” Maggie said. “I’m hoping to age gracefully and earn respect for my years.”
“My mother used to say, you’ve got to be strong to survive the golden years.” Dixiebelle fluttered her eyelashes. “Then she’d invite her friends over and make mint juleps.”
“I’d rather have lunch,” Tish said. “You can plot the overthrow of the government over a good chicken salad.”
“In the kid days and our early work years,” Gail said, “we banded together and pooled knowledge to solve problems and shared joys and sorrows.”
“Why not get together once a month,” Lorraine suggested.
“We need the support now more than ever. We can empower our golden years with the things the younger generations don’t have,” Maggie said. “Knowledge and experience. Think of this as our Boom Times.”
Tish whipped out her dayplanner while the rest of us searched for something to write on. I rummaged in my overstuffed purse until I found my eyeliner and the last of my deposit slips. I wrote down the next date and time, then tucked the note in my bra so that I’d be sure to find it when I got home.
Six heads nodded with the realization that we had taken back control.
“By the way, Lorraine, what did you tell the guy about cooking a beef roast?” Tish asked.
“I told him 400 degrees for seven hours.”
As Maggie Smith on Downton Abbey would have said, “We know how to play the game.”
Miss Darcy will be updating you on further goings on of the DSRC. In the meantime you should check out Lorraine Farrington’s ancestor Lord Andrew Farrington in the tell-all book The Masked Heart (Book 2 in the Sweet Deception Regency Series).
Buy or Download a Sample by clicking HERE.