Sunday, July 12, 2015

Starting on 86

When Dolores Crowley (left), Shirley Frederickson (center) and I (right) entered the University of Washington in 1948 there were no dorms available for girls. The campus was exploding with WW2 vets attending on the GI bill, so to find a place to sleep a girl had to pledge a sorority. Thus three unlikely pledges from very different worlds were thrown into the same room on the third floor of Delta Zeta sorority. We suffered through memorizing all the names of the founders and sitting every night from 7-10 in the moldy dark basement at study table. We learned to pour demitasse coffee and rules of etiquette for a real lady...I failed at this. We wore white gloves most everywhere, except to classes. At all times we were instructed never to wear more than three points of jewelry at a time, which is to say if you wore a wrist watch and pearls you could wear one ring,  But if you wore earrings (pierced ears were considered vulgar, by the way) that was two points, and you could only add a watch. You got demerits for certain infractions, and after so many points you were confined in the house from 5pm Friday night to 8am Monday morning. Who would have imagined that 67 years later we three would remain dear close friends, all living in California. So last Tuesday I was honored by them at lunch here at one of my favorite restaurants, Sea Thai Bistro. After exchanging aches and pain stories we got down to the serious business of recalling life in the sorority. What seemed so serious then seems so funny now. I confided that one of the house boys, Pat, used to open his basement window so I could crawl in after hours. They remembered different things, all of which seem ridiculous and funny now. It was a wonderful addendum to my whopping big 4th of July party.
That same night my friend Chuck visiting from Guadalajara (and 4 years my junior) took me to dinner here at the golf course. Chuck and I go back about 50 years, so more nostalgia hit the airways. Yesterday my friend Jan Jobert from Oakland spent the night. Jan and I only go back eight years, but we are also dear friends. Last night we viewed the new Pixar film Inside Out. My opinion? With 85 years under my bulging belt, two masters degrees and a doctorate Im still not savvy enough to figure out all the complex layers of it.
Happy aging to you all.

1 comment:

Beth said...

Young woman starting college today...her computer, cell phone, digital devices and entertainment system(s) are "mandatory" & "essential." Her phone is glued to her ear (or Bluetooth, etc) while crossing the street, eating in cafeteria, even while hanging out with her friends (who are also pinned to their devices) and she is probably checking her email or shopping online while in class (or "attending" class online). She would never call herself "feminist" although she enjoys all the benefits, freedoms and rights hard-fought for by her foresisters. She has few, if any, moral scruples, and if anyone told her what to do, she'd probably tell them "F Off." Except for her parents, who provide her with a credit card "for emergencies." Of course not all young college students have all or any of these traits & privileges, but isn't it funny to think about the change!!