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Monday, 1.24.05: What Women Do

The high-minded world embraces progressive values of pluralism, multiculturalism, integration, diversity. Biodiversity is essential for strong ecosystems. Vive la difference.

But sometimes you need a girls' night out.

I think when you are 56 years old, "girls' night out" is supposed to be about bridge games, or scrapbooking, or investment clubs. But my group of margaritas is a little wilder. I judged a contest: how fast can you take your bra off without removing your shirt? Ready, set, go -- whose bra would I catch first? The only lesbian on hand sat out and asserted that this was definitely not a lesbian game. I could have told her that. It's a skill developed in women's dormitories and perfected in heterosexual and child-infested homes everywhere -- how to get the old harness off without getting anyone curious or aroused.

The cosmopolitans flowed. Lovely in giant martini glasses. Reruns of "Sex & the City" playing.

Blue light glowed from the bottom of the pool and fog rose off the waters

On this coldest night of the winter, with inches of snow on the ground, five of us decided to brave the hot tub. A flurry of clothes changing activities. We found hats to keep our hair from freezing but only one woman had been smart enough to bring clogs. The rest of us slapped our bare feet into the snow as we raced for the warmth. One by one - drinks in hand - we plunged in, screaming and laughing. Exhilarated. Someone in the house flipped off the porch light. Blue light glowed from the bottom of the pool and fog rose off the waters. Far out.

For those who claim to faint in boiling cauldrons, I need to say that, although the temperature of the tub was set for 101, I'm confident it never got above 98 -- just a hair below body temperature. The water was precisely comfortable but after, what, an hour, I felt slightly cool. Or maybe it was my icy ears that wicked away the body heat.

Eventually we had to hop through the snow again to get inside. Only one of the five had somehow lost her bathing suit top and had to run through the house arms across her chest screaming.

Next year maybe I'll join that book club or quilting bee, but for now I'll hang in with the grrrlz.


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