Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Ladies Who Lunch

The Ivy on Robertson

Twice a year, for so many years I've lost track, the four of us go to the Ivy to celebrate our birthdays.  Val and I take first position in January.  Kyle and Elena come next in March.  We order the same thing every time:  grilled veggie/chicken salad.  We sit among the rich folk, the occasional celebrities.  One year there was Meg Ryan lunching with George Clooney.  Another year, Mary Tyler Moore.  Some years we hit it big, some not at all.  Now we forget names.  "There's that French guy with the ponytail... he's on Top Chef a lot."  We look over quickly, return to our warm bread rolls.  As the years go by, the famous ones matter less.  It's our own lives we'd rather dissect.  We talk and talk, we laugh and open gifts.  We go home happy and full. We met in junior high, the four of us.  Emerson Jr. High.  The early '70s.  We started 7th grade together, the first year girls were allowed to wear jeans to school; the first year of busing.  The four of us, we got through it all, somehow, thanks to each other.  The early disasters, the growing pains.  We've been there and done that a few times over: 

Boyfriends and crushes.  Sneaking into R-rated movies.  Getting our periods.  Getting high.  Getting drunk.  Boys.  Long hair.  Short hair.  More boys.  Some nice, some not-so.  Desert boots.  Clogs.  Birkenstocks.  Platform shoes.  Foot surgery.  Hip-huggers.  Hot pants. High-waisted pants.  Granny skirts.  Peasant tops.  Tie-dyed shirts.  And boys.  The flirtations.  The aggravations.  The highs and lows and in-betweens.

Virginity.  Lost virginity.  Raging hormones.  Lost hormones.  Learning to drive.  Learning to let go.  Weight loss.  Weight gain.  Weight Watchers.  First dates.  First cars.  First apartments.  First houses.  First everything.  College.  New guys.  The same guys.  Men.  Good ones.  Questionable ones.  The best ones of all.   Falling in love and out of love.  Finding love again.

Marriage.  Divorce.  Remarriage.  Pregnancies.  Miscarriages.  Labor and delivery.  Child-rearing.  The terrible twos, fours, fourteens.  Teens learning to drive.  Teens text-messaging.  Loved ones lost.  Aging parents.  Aging selves.  Everyone's getting old.  The cycle repeats.  One year and then the next.  We're at the Ivy again.  Make a wish.


  1. Two questions: Who'd you see this year? And what is in a grilled salad?

  2. Only saw the French guy with the pony-tail from "Top Chef" whose name we didn't know. The grilled salad has grilled veggies and chicken, avocado and scallions. Delish!