On Friendship and Being The Dorothy.

Girlsfriends-San-Francisco-OrpheumFour is just the right number for a group of friends. You can fit at one table in a restaurant without someone having to pull up an extra chair and sit at one end, like a toddler.

You can chat comfortably in a group, or as two couples. And there’s no Odd Girl Out, as can happen in a group of three or five.

With only two friends, there can be the Alpha/Beta dynamic going on. Someone is the Lucy and the other, the Ethel. The Betty and the Veronica. The Electro Woman and the Dyna Girl.

The Four Girl Ensemble just works, and has since Little Women. The roles are generally outlined, but still flexible.

There’s the soft, feminine Girly-Girl; the snarky, smart one; the sexy one; and the Team Mom/narrator. This trope been used over and over in books, movies and television shows. Think about it: Sex and the City, Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret, Twilight, Designing Women, Firefly, Living Single, and Friends, if you count Chandler.

Sex and the City has defined this best for Gen X’ers, like me. When the show was on the air I saw t-shirts for sale that said “I’m a Charlotte”. You could still probably pick up a shirt that says “I’m a Miranda”. Because nobody wants to be a Miranda.

I have a group of four close girlfriends. We live scattered across the country and try to get together once a year for a girls’ weekend. We’ve had the “which Sex and the City character are you” discussion even though only one of us has really watched the series.

I don’t have HBO, but I was working in accounting when the show was popular. All the single young women talked about SATC enough to where I caught the gist. I remember when Samantha caught the gist in season two. Thank goodness penicillin cleared that right up.

I have seen Sex and the City reruns, but they were edited to run on basic cable. This means episodes are eight minutes long and mostly about shoes. 

With my girlfriends, I tried to claim Charlotte status, but there were already two Charlottes. My buddies assured me I’m totally a Carrie. I guess that’s okay. As long as I’m not a Miranda. Because– say it with me–nobody wants to be a Miranda. Nobody-wants-to-be-the-mirandaNow that my girlfriends and I are all middle aged, we are sliding from Sex and the City into more of a Golden Girls territory. We are talking less about Cosmos and more about our pending empty nests. We still talk about ess-ee-ecks, but it’s with our husbands on alternate Wednesdays. I catch myself looking a comfortable shoes and duster vests at Chico’s.

If you think about it, SATC to GG is the natural progression for those characters. For the first season of The Golden Girls, Rue McClanahan was a year younger than Kim Cattrall is during the first Sex and the City movie. Ponder that for a minute. Then cancel that appointment for a short and sassy shag haircut.

The bad news is the Carrie of The Golden Girls is Sophia, and that role doesn’t really fit me, although I am a wisecracking dame.

Nope, I was contemplating my friends and our places in the Golden Girls universe, when it hit me.You-are-the-Dorothy

I’m The Dorothy.

I think I’d rather be the Miranda.

Who are you? I’m a Jo/Rachel/Carrie/Dorothy. I don’t think they make that t-shirt on Café Press.

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