Craving an escape from the toxic garbage dump that is the current news cycle, I turned on The Golden Girls for a little mindless entertainment the other morning. Within just a few minutes, I was giggling along with Rose, Dorothy, Blanche, and Sophia.
The world felt a little less hateful and a whole lot sunnier just watching the antics of this delightful quartet of seniors. A devoted fan since I first started watching the show with my grandma when I was 8 years old, I’ve seen every episode multiple times, and I knew every word the ladies said before they were spoken. Even so, just a few minutes with The Golden Girls was like a salve for the soul — or I should say cheesecake for the belly.
Because I often watched the show with my grandma, the reruns always conjure memories of her. My grandma was without a doubt a Sophia — feisty, outspoken, and unwilling to take any shit from anyone. I, on the other hand, was a mix between Rose and Dorothy, though I kind of wanted to be a Blanche. But aside from the nostalgic memories of my grandma and the side-splitting laughs, The Golden Girls is chock-full of life lessons, such as…
1. You’re never too old to be sexy AF.
Blanche may have in her 50s when the show aired, but she still rocked a little black dress like a spry 20-something. She may have been a little vain, but she made no apologies for her fierce sexuality, unwavering self-confidence, and feminine pride. In other words, she was sexy AF simply because she believed she was.
2. Bitches get shit done.
Despite the fact that the ladies were retired, they never stopped kicking ass and taking names. Over the course of the show’s seven-year run, the ladies acted in community theater productions, started their own business, participated in a telethon, planned and hosted a bazillion parties, helped in a police stakeout, met the president, diffused a hostage situation, cooked a bazillion meals, volunteered at soup kitchens and hospitals, and dealt with countless shitstorms of epic proportions. They showed us that life doesn’t stop at middle age — it gets even better.
3. Most problems can be solved with simple carbs and girl time.
Literally every single problem was solved — or at least, made a little better — with cheesecake and girl talk around the tiny kitchen table.
4. You can make anything sound fancy.
Before The Golden Girls, no one knew what the fuck a “lānai” was, but it sure as hell sounds better than a boring old patio.
5. A good theme song is everything.
Just hearing a few lines of “Thank You for Being a Friend” is like having coffee with your BFF. In fact, maybe I’ll call her up right now.
6. Families can be a shitshow.
Every one of the ladies had a complex and messy family history with more than a few skeletons in the closet. But somehow they managed to wade through the shitshow of family drama with more than a modicum of grace. Not only did they know, understand, and accept that families are messy, but they also knew that family transcends biology and is who you make it.
7. Getting old kind of sucks. But you get used to it.
There are a lot of really great things about getting older, like increased self-acceptance and an IDGAF attitude. But getting older also kind of sucks, and there’s no pretending that it doesn’t. But with a little cheesecake, girl talk, and a good old fashioned bitchfest, it becomes a little more tolerable.
8. You might not be able to go home again, but you can talk about it forever.
You can take the girl out of Sicily, Brooklyn, Georgia, or St. Olaf, but you can’t take Sicily, Brooklyn, Georgia, or St. Olaf out of the girl. Our childhood and upbringing make us who we are, but we can still move on, change, and grow.
9. Be the best YOU you can be.
The ladies may have been stereotypical caricatures of their characters, but whether they were the sexy one, the sarcastic one, the innocent one, or the feisty one, they knew who they were and made no apologies for it.
Forget the fact that when the show aired, the “girls” were only in their 50s and not the senior citizens they were portrayed to be. Forget the fact that they all rocked the ’80s bad perm hairstyle. Forget the shoulder pads and the awful fashion sense. These ladies are amazing AF, and we all want to be them when we grow up.