Saturday, March 20, 2010

Cougar UP!

Cougar UP!
Cougar Up! That's the name of a new line of products created by the girlfriend of an old friend of mine. She told me all about it over dinner and wine a few nights ago. She was driving home one day and saw a bumper sticker with "Cougar Up!" on it and she said, "Damn! Why didn't I think of that first?!!" (I don't know. I honestly don't know.) Then she got closer to the car and realized it actually said, "Cowgirl Up!" So she rushed home to see if anyone else had coined the Cougar Up phrase and decided nobody had. Thus, a new product line was born, for older ladies of, well, sexual means.

I have to admit that I plastered a smile on my face as I listened to her tell this story. And I politely (fakely) said, "Oh Wow!" in all the right places when I was shown "the merchandise." And I graciously accepted the gift of my very own Swarovski crystal-studded Cougar Up! black t-shirt (with a peace sign in the "o" of the cougar, no less). I was told that it retails for SIXTY-FIVE DOLLARS!! But my older, yet somewhat perky breasts were not aching to make those crystals sparkle. I drove home with that thing growling at me from the back seat.

I guess I qualify as a cougar. But I don't want to be one. I have this judgment about older women (like me) throwing down really young men. It's just fine, I suppose, as long as nobody gets hurt (And who is usually more vulnerable...hmmm?). But, I still think it's cheesy and tacky and undignified and... desperate.

But I've had my comeuppance. Yes, I have. It happened to me in Vegas, as all things tacky and desperate should. I didn't throw down a youngster, nor have I changed my mind about my own lack of cougar tendencies, but I certainly have softened my judgment about other women indulging in this wild-cat sport.

That t-shirt remained in my car as I drove up to Las Vegas, burning a paw print into the fine Corinthian leather. I figured Vegas would be the perfect place for me to unburden myself of the thing. After all, I was going there for my friend Sandee's 60th birthday. Surely I'd find the perfect demographic for that shirt at her party. Hell, I thought I might even just package it up and give it to Sandee for her birthday, since I (and all her friends, family and Santa Claus) had grown so very tired of that antique she'd been dating for 45 years who refused to ever come to her house to pick her up for a date (she had to meet him everywhere), who never, ever slept in her bed and who was a millionaire cheapskate who left the $2.95 price tag on her birthday presents (If he ever remembered to give her one). If anybody needed some "fresh meat" in her life, it was Sandee. Besides, "cougar bait" boys don't wear yellow polyester double-knit sans-a-belt pants and saddle shoes, nor do they have dandruff on their stubbly, age-spotted cheeks. Gag.

The night of my arrival, Sandee invited one of her girl friends over to her house so that I could meet her. Sandee thought we'd hit it off, and she was right. She's a gorgeous redhead whom I'll name Ginger, after the exotic movie star character from Gilligan's Island. Ginger was loads of fun and we connected immediately. She was smart and witty and full of energy. Then this conversation happened:

Sandee: So, have you seen cougar bait recently?
Lisa: (WTF is cougar bait?)
Ginger: Oh honey, yes I have!
Sandee: What's his name, anyway?
Ginger: I have no idea! Don't even care! At one point I said to him, "Maybe we should have a conversation sometime."
Sandee & Ginger: (gales of laughter)
Me: hehe?

So, I can be a little slow, especially with this whole new vocabulary and all. Cougar. Cougar UP! Cougar bait. My oh my. But I slowly started to get the picture. Especially when Ginger said "He's a fireman!" I got quite a picture, then.

The next night was the 60th birthday party and Ginger came over early to help us get all the food and other stuff set up. She paused on the couch long enough to let us know about her date the previous evening with The Fireman.

Ginger: (I must take poetic license and imagine that she's stretched out on the bed, or perhaps bent over the kitchen counter, in some level of undress, panting in a snaggle-toothed, tongue-lolling, cougary kind of way...)
Fireman: (hesitating) Um, you do take birth control, don't you?
Ginger: (working hard not to laugh) I don't have to take birth control.
Fireman: (confused) You mean you use something else?
Ginger: No honey, I can't get pregnant.
Fireman: Oh. ... Why not? (This is a good indication of how little these young men know about women's bodies)
Ginger: Because, I stopped having my period a long time ago.
Fireman. (still confused) Oh.

Later......................................... (I had to draw it out because, from what I hear, this cougar thing is rarely a wham-bam-thank-you-ma'm kind of thing. It's a wham-bam-thank-you-ma'm-let's-do-it-a-fifth-time kind of thing.)

Fireman: So, how old are you?
Ginger: How old do you think I am?
Fireman: Well, how old do you think I am?
Ginger: 38.
Fireman: Close. 37. So, seriously, how old are you?
Ginger: Old enough to be your mother.
Fireman: Get out!
Ginger: Would you like to come to my 60th birthday party in September?
Fireman: OMG! This is my BIGGEST FANTASY!

Well, now. I won't go any further because you can imagine that by this time, The Fireman's hose was primed again and he was ready to get back to work on one hot and burning red house.

Guess who I gave the Cougar Up! t-shirt to? Ginger. She wore it proudly the next day. There isn't a hint of tackiness, cheesiness or desperation in Ginger. She's just got a healthy lust for men life and she's having lots of fun. She's happy with her "cougar bait." He's delighted with her. There are no strings and no last names. Just some wobbly legs and mussed up (thinning) hair in the wee hours of the morning.

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