“What should we do this weekend?” I asked a younger lesbian friend of mine a few weeks ago, over the phone.
“Let’s go to FIRE ISLAND! I hear there is a great party in Cherry Grove!” She squealed.
I rolled my eyes. “Babes, we can’t go to Fire Island. We don’t have a place to stay.” I whined, suddenly flooded with terrible memories of suffering through the last ferry ride, whilst painfully drunk, only to get to the train to realize it’s delayed for four hours, only to take a reckless $200 Uber ride back to the city.
“Who cares! We’ll come for the day!” The young lesbian gleefully shouted. “Come on! That, or we’ll find a place once we’re there, Zara. Come on. Don’t be lame.”
“We can’t ask someone if we can sleep on their couch, that’s so rude! Also, I refuse to take yet another wasted, nauseating late-night ferry ride in this lifetime of mine. Sorry. We need to plan these things in advance.” I condescendingly coached the lost, directionless baby lesbian. Poor thing, she had no clue how to map out a weekend out of town.
She paused. It was a heavy, pregnant pause.”Well, that’s very adult of you, Zara. I don’t think I like it.” She snipped.
“Hahaha, honey. I’m many things, but I’m not an adult.” I stared into the store bought roses I had purchased two days ago for a whopping $12. They looked thirsty. A tidal wave of guilt washed over my body. Had I neglected a living thing?
“Actually you are. Something has changed in the last year.” Baby lezzie whispered down the phone.
“I’m wild. That will never change, girl. Now hold on. My roses are in desperate need of being watered!” I dutifully walked my wilting flowers over to the kitchen and watered them with the filtered water I keep in the fridge (for the flowers and the cats). And suddenly it hit me:
The baby lesbian was right. It’s happened. I’m becoming a, uh, adult lesbian. After all, I had just interrupted a phone call about weekend partying to tend to the fucking roses.
Now, becoming an adult lesbian might not be that big of a deal to some of you, but to wild, former baby dykes like me, it’s huge.
See, I was one of those lesbians that was really, really good at being young.
I came flying out of the womb loving gay bars and nightlife and one-night-stands and champagne and slutty attire, galore! I’ve been wild, impulsive, adventurous and promiscuous my entire life. I never imaged that I would be the type of lesbian that feared venturing to Fire Island for the day because she didn’t have a place to stay. I never imagined I would really be a grown-up! But here I am, I’ve entered adult lesbian-hood. It’s both horrendously terrifying and deeply comforting at once.
And here are other signs that a generation of us hard-partying, lesbian kittens, have turned into fully-grown adult cats.
1. You won’t go to Fire Island unless you have booked an actual place to stay
We all get to a place in our lives where we become conscious of how much things actually cost. We can’t morally ask to sleep on someone’s couch in their beautiful Fire Island cottage when we know they’re paying an exorbitant amount of money for it. That, and uh, our backs hurt when we sleep on couches, baby! We’ve simply reached the time in our lives when we need proper beds, you know? I suppose we could go to Fire Island for the day….except our gluten-intolerant stomachs are too frail to withstand drunken ferry rides at 1 am, you know? All that splashing around is no good for the recently diagnosed celiac stomach.
Also is anyone else “thrown” these days by a sudden change in plans? I used to live for impulsive trips out of the city and now they fill me with anxiety. “WHO IS GOING TO CARE FOR THE CATS!?” I’ll scream to myself the entire drive to Long Island.
Which leads me to sign number 2:
2. You worry about your cats
You know you’re adult lesbian-ing when you spend real chunks of time through out the day worrying about if your cats resent you. If you’ve raised them right. If they’re truly happy.
3. You’re drunk by 7 pm on a Friday, in bed by 9 pm
I’ve picked up a new habit: Thursday around noon, I’ll start dreaming of the pending weekend. “I’m going to do so many fun party things this weekend!” I’ll whimsically think to myself.
“I’m going to go to Hot Rabbit at Boots and Saddle.” I’ll ambitiously declare, even though the party doesn’t heat up until about 11 pm, and I haven’t fallen asleep after 10 pm since I replaced hard drugs with hard cover books (ugh. I know. B-o-r-i-n-g!).
I’ll text my friend CB Glasser one of the great forces behind the fab Hot Rabbit party. “I’m totally coming out to paarrrrty this weekend!” I’ll type into my phone.
Cut to Friday night at 7 pm. Since I don’t drink nearly as much as I used to, it takes two glasses of Sauvignon Blanc to get me buzzed and three to get me loaded.
Cut to 9 pm, I’m in bed stroking the cats (no really, the actual CAT not the metaphorical “pussycat” perv), far too exhausted and far too drunk to leave the warmth of my precious bed (and really, bed is so nice when your sheets are actually clean. Another sign you’re becoming an adult lesbian. You marvel over the texture of freshly washed sheets. Yawn).
4. Your tattoos are fading
Nothing says “I’m GROWING UP!” like a faded tattoo. Except uh, nine faded tattoos, peppered across a weathered body (like mine).
5. You go to parties and clubs without any fear of running into a past hook up or bitchy ex-girlfriend
When I was a baby lesbian, I couldn’t go to a lesbian party without my stomach being twisted into a slew of intricate knots. I was terrified that I was going to run into the rando I made out with in a bathroom stall of a club the week before, or my toxic ex who would surely get wasted and throw her vodka soda on me, ruining my fresh pack of clip-in hair extensions.
Now, I saunter into lesbian parties with the relaxed manner of a Buddhist monk (my extensions have never looked cleaner!). Why? Well, I’m so grown-up these days that all of my exes have left the city, to like, I don’t know, breed chickens upstate New York or something equally snooooze and I’m like the last lesbian standing.
Now I just lean up against the bar, guzzle back my wine (I’m too delicate for hard liquor) and smile as I watch all the baby lesbians indulge in their baby lesbian drama. Sometimes I’m tempted to intervene and offer my wise two cents, and then I remember nobody likes that kind of lesbian. Nobody likes the older dyke interjecting in the kiddo drama. In fact, it’s a surefire way to cigarette ash flicked in your eyeball (I know this one from personal experience).
6. You develop food allergies
When I was in my 20s I could eat anything. Then I turned 30.
Now I can’t seem to digest anything that isn’t gluten-free, dairy-free or soy-free. I’ve become the lesbian who googles “vegan restaurants” in my free time. I used to google “hot lesbian parties.” Now I google “where can I buy almond milk cream cheese below 14th street?”
7. You start talking on the phone because it’s “easier”
“I hate talking on the phone, ugh, why doesn’t she just text me!” I used to angrily think when my decade older girlfriend had the audacity to call me. TO CHAT.
Now, I’m calling every babe on the block. I mean I can’t grocery shop and text, you know?
8. You drink “la Croix” sparkling water instead of beer so you don’t get a hangover
“I love La Croix, I’m addicted to it.” My friend Stacey Lentz said to me, just yesterday. “I mean it’s in a can, like beer—except it doesn’t give me a hangover!” She smiled as if she’d discovered the hidden secret to a life of unabashed lesbian bliss.
When you start craving La Croix over booze, you know you’ve officially reached adult gay-hood, girl.
9. When you go on a date, you actually eat
When I used to go on dates, the dates usually started well after 9 pm and took place inside sweaty dive-bars.
Now dates, mean a healthy, three-course meal at 6 pm. It’s a lot more expensive to be a grown-up, though you black-out a lot less!
10. You wake up in your makeup not because you had a one-night stand, but because you fell asleep while watching “BOUND” on TV
I used to rock next day eye makeup incessantly. It was my trademark. I tried to pretend it was a “choice” like “oh you know smokey eyes, honey. Darling.” It was never a choice.
I rocked smudgy black eye makeup because I would hook up with girls and not wash the heaps of mascara off my eyelashes before we fell asleep all twisted up in each other (do you know how many white pillows I’ve ruined?).
I still sport next day smokey eyes. However, it’s because I fall asleep on the couch whenever Bound is playing on the telly. Not because I’m having sex (though watching the hottie Gina Gershon have sex is pretty close to having actual sex).
11. You’re bitter that the kids don’t know who the Indigo Girls are
“Clloooosseeer I ammm to fineeeee.” I sang along to the Indigo Girls while driving around Florida last spring.
“What the hell is this?” A baby lesbian I was chauffeuring around town screamed in the backseat.
A bitterness I didn’t even know I had boiled inside my red-hot blood. “THE INDIGO GIRLS, ASSHOLE!” I screamed back.
12. You need an IV after Pride weekend
Pride is a rough recovery, regardless of where you land on the great age spectrum. I used to have to take handfuls of vitamins and drink boat loads of water for three days to simply recover. Now I need the hard stuff. Hydration Ivs. B-12 injections. Colonics (Just kidding. Sort of).
13. You go to P Town to whale watch
I know the ladies of the gay haven Provincetown are very sexy and the drag queens are extra super glittery–but the whales. Now they’re the real stars of Cape Cod, babes.
14. You start googling sperm banks over 24-hour-banks
I used to google 24-hour banks so I could cash paychecks at midnight to buy rounds of shots for the pretty girls. Now I google sperm banks because you know, my biological clock is ticking and my ovaries are aching (Now, I know that was a ~extremely sexual~ visual but don’t all line up to date me at once, now ladies).