Question: At What Age Does a Woman Become Eligible to Receive Granny Panty Birthday Cards?

Answer:  My age.

I just had a birthday this month.  And among the many good wishes, for which I am grateful, were two cards that, in different ways, implied that I just might be ready for large old lady underpants.

Another card took a different tack.  It featured a gutsy older woman, wearing an oversized pink madras plaid camp shirt, about to get on a razor scooter.  I say gutsy not only because she was about to get on the scooter, but also because she was wearing that shirt.

This made me wonder if I received any cards like that last birthday, so I looked.  One from last year featured platform heels.  Another showed a woman wearing leopard print (not well, but with a certain panache.)  A third said, “In France they have 3 words for women like you – ooh la la!”  And another showed a picture of Michelangelo’s David with birthday candles covering his crotch, implying that I might be inclined to blow.

But no industrial strength underwear.  So what changed this year?

It got me musing about age and some of its many ramifications.

I teach college students, one of whom I recently overheard to say, “OMG, I’m going to be 25 on my next birthday, I’m SO OLD!”  I wanted to slap her silly little estrogen-poufed face, but instead I just smiled indulgently, as one does with a child, and congratulated myself on the restraint that comes with age and maturity.  Clearly she has no clue yet as to the jowls, gingivitis and dry vagina that are waiting around some future corner.

When one of my friends called to wish me happy birthday, we were both congratulating and lamenting our respective years, and she asked if I had ever known my grandmothers. I said yes, one of them.  She asked, “And when she was the same age as you, how did she compare in vibrancy and youthfulness?”  I had to admit that, as much as I loved her, at my age she had neither.  Even at 10 years younger than I am now, she was roly-poly, had thinning gray hair in no particular style, and wore dumpy housedresses and sensible shoes.  Even worse, she did not have much of a life.  She cleaned, visited her son and granddaughters, watched TV and wrote letters to her remaining sisters.  Once she had been married to a handsome doctor, had worn furs, collected antiques and invited people to her stately home.  But her husband had died, and the house had been sold.  The friendships had died too or faded away.  She had no current hobbies or interests to speak of.

Then my friend asked me what I did to celebrate my birthday.  Well, first I had a karaoke party with about 10 friends.  I wore tights and a sheer top, drank martinis and sang Nina Simone (not well, but with a certain panache.)

Next I went shopping for some new dance shoes.  I got two pairs of salsa shoes, both with 3” Cuban heels and straps that daintily criss-cross the ankles – one in bronze satin with scalloped edges and the other a peekaboo black leather.

Then I went to a party for another friend.  I wore a flowing black hi-lo skirt that swirled when I twirled in those bronze satin shoes.  I drank wine and danced for hours.

Finally, I got a massage from an attractive black masseur.  He delicately asked if I wanted my “glutes” massaged, and I said sure.  I noticed he hovered there for awhile, and then he said, “You keep yourself in nice shape.”  I do exercise, but admittedly not as much as I should.  Yet I had a feeling he wasn’t picturing me in granny panties.

“Now,” my friend asked, “could you imagine your grandmother celebrating her birthday that way at your age?”  I had to admit I could not.

It’s true that my panties have gotten bigger over the years, and now include some Spanx-like support garments.  (Though I wanted to like Spanx, they just flatten my ass.  Support is supposed to mean “lift and separate,” not “flatten”!)  But I also still own some thongs and lacy tangas.  Mostly I just go commando because, well, I’m a commando.  Or an aging hippie.  Or too lazy to do the laundry.  Or all three.

I don’t resent the people who gave me the granny panty cards.  On the contrary, I’m lucky to have friends who want to celebrate my birthday.  I’m fortunate to be healthy and have enough of what I need, and grateful that I still want to get off the couch and sing and dance, drink wine, enjoy life and lick the spoon.*

But the friend who gave me the pink plaid shirt card?  Well, the irony is that I don’t own such a shirt, BUT SHE DOES!  Along with the MATCHING BERMUDA SHORTS!

I’m signing off now.  I’m heading over to her place where I will find that shirt and shorts and burn them.  Not only as a favor to my friend, who is still youthful and vibrant herself and deserves better.  But also as a public service to the rest of us.

reduced tanga panty

*Licking the Spoon is my metaphor for living life with gusto.  In my book in progress about food, sex and relationship, I talk about how to remain youthful, sexy and vibrant at any age.


153 thoughts on “Question: At What Age Does a Woman Become Eligible to Receive Granny Panty Birthday Cards?

  1. I personally believe youth is not just physical, but a mindset as well. As long as one is able to keep this then yes, maybe people will be able to see the physical evidence of age but that would be not be a fair judgement of how “youthful” a person is.


  2. This story was quite amusing. Having friends for years must be a nice relationship, being able to talk about things ten years ago. Don’t worry about the granny panty cards their just to make you laugh. For my best friend whose about to turn 21 (The last person in our group of friends to do so), were giving him a set of diapers to symbolize him not being a baby anymore ironically. =)


  3. I don’t believe it’s the age that causes an individuals to think someone’s old, it’s their spirit, and you got spirit. YOU don’t have anything to worry about, but like you said and how you described your grandmother, kinda reminded me of my grandmother, watched a lot of T.V. didn’t participate in the up-comming trends and kept to herself or talked with me and my mom only. My mom on the other hand, who is turning 60 this year, was way more active and trendy than my grandmother at 60. My mom has a ton of spirit and because of that I keep finding myself stuck thinking she is the 35 year old woman I grew up with. People will ask me, “How old’s your mom” and I’m always replying “around 40,” but its her spirit I don’t know you on a personal level, but just seeing your personality, how well you take care of your self, in the hour and a half once week time period, the age you will need granny panties is the day McDonald’s goes out of business.


  4. Thanks for the laughs! I believe that age is only just a number and you cant wear and act however you want to make yourself feel good about your body instead of an “old lady”


  5. “Clearly she has no clue yet as to the jowls, gingivitis and dry vagina that are waiting around some future corner.” Dry vagina hahahaha… I’m laughing now, while I’m in my 20s hopefully I still have that sense of humor when it happens to me, a little KY will probably help lol


  6. You have such an inspiring perspective on your age/getting older. I love that you keep an active and adventurous lifestyle, hopefully I can be like that!


  7. Yes age is just a number, I loved how you spent your birthday. I will never take my age for granted and I hope when Im a grandmother, not just sitting around on my birthday, but taking every birthday I have and making the most of them. When you said “dry vagina” that had me laughing for days, something I will definitely not be looking forward too. Loved this blog though, and will definetly not be saying “I feel so old” when I am just in my early 20’s, out loud ANYMORE!!!!


  8. I really enjoyed your article! It does not matter how old you are, you should still enjoy yourself. DO things that one could not do because of work, chores, school, and or children. I admire how you acknowledge your age and yet enjoy and live life to the fullest.


  9. I think women can rock any type of panties at any age. Rock on with those leopard print undies! By the way, how was the gluteus maximus massage? My butt is definitely my favorite body part to get massaged!


  10. First, I’ll admit that I might be one of those girls who you would like to slap across the face for not really knowing what old means. Next, even though you received a granny panty birthday card on your birthday, I still think you got that card by mistake. Maybe the store ran out of cards, so your friend had no choice but to get you that particular card! You, Professor Hoggan are without a doubt one of the most vibrant and sexy woman I have ever seen in my life and I honestly just hope that I will be able to “dance, drink wine, enjoy life and lick the spoon” when I am truly old enough to know what old really means.


  11. I loved this article! 😊
    I don’t believe there is any age in specific to wear any type of underwear.
    I am about to turn 21 and your post was very interesting as it made me think of the future.
    I do believe and agree with you that we are fortunate to have friends who are comfortable enough to even give us these types of cards. Did you give her a card of that sort on her birthday? 😅


  12. Cards like that make anyone contemplate their age. My mother who, so far, is aging gracefully, despite former drug use in her youth, still gets butthurt when she receives cards like granny panties because she hates feeling old. I honestly believe you’re only old if you believe you are and let yourself be. Me, unlike anyone I know, give interesting gifts to make them feel… happy I guess is a good euphemism, like giving my best friend a jackrabbit for her eighteenth birthday. I guess the amount of batteries in her house play a part in making her feel youthful, as long as they don’t run out.


  13. Its nice to know that when I do age that I can still enjoy all the same sexy items of clothing as I do now maybe just in moderation later:) Wouldn’t want to give me husband a heart attack!


  14. Age is nothing but a number. It doesn’t matter what age you are, you can wear whatever you want as long as you love feel happy.


  15. I always tease my mom about granny panties and that she shouldn’t be wearing those said “period panties,” but truth is they are quite comfortable even at my age. I always tease her that she’s getting old but in reality she’s young, 45 is no big deal. Once she hits 50 all the jokes are coming out though. Recently I overheard my dad saying that she should stop wearing such ugly underwear which he doesn’t like so off they went to Victoria’s Secret. When she came back the bag was filled with thongs and cheeksters. Lets just say those underwear stay in the drawer collecting dust. In all, I don’t think the underwear really phase her. But talking about her age definitely triggers something.


  16. This just convinced me to wear thongs well into my 70’s! The only problem is I don’t really like thongs all that much. I’ll probably just stick with lacy panties then, bit more comfortable.


  17. First off wow based on how our class is going I really didn’t know you were this funny. I was totally just rolling all over the floor laughing haha. But in regards to the article it was good because it was funny yet informative. Because I agree although those cards are funny and I have given them to some people that will remain unnamed I think you have a right to view yourself however you want. I have met some older people that look better and are in better shape then some young people. Also, you have those people that like to dress a certain way because that’s how they were raised or that’s what they are most comfortable in. So, I say that to say wear whatever you want when it comes to your underpants as long as you are comfortable even if that is no underpants at all. 😉


  18. “Clearly she has no clue yet as to the jowls, gingivitis and dry vagina that are waiting around some future corner.” I love that! Oh the joys of aging and what I have to look forward to. Haha


  19. My older sister and I did this for my mom’s 50th Birthday 2 years ago. As a gag gift although I’m not sure if she actually uses them… haha.


  20. I’m turning 21 next month and honestly have been been dreading it… For some reason, being able to legally buy alcohol somehow makes me feel like my life is passing me by (haha so dramatic). Thanks for putting things into perspective for me! Age doesn’t matter so long as you’re surrounded by friends and family! Keep on keepin onnnnn 🙂


  21. Absolutely love this article. It really made me laugh! Age is definitely a number and its only how you feel is the truth. I also think I learned a little more than I really needed to know but thats ok to.


  22. I believe you can only allow yourself to be old. I find it very important to keep a happy and youthful life throughout your whole life. if you allow yourself to be “old” that is when you become old.


  23. I think this reading was funny. I must say though, that a person should be able to wear what they feel is comfortable. I remember a time when I was thin and all I wore were thongs or went straight commando. I felt comfortable with this. Today I cant even wear a thong, its so uncomfortable. A lot of things changed after I became a mother. A lot of things became not so comfortable anymore.


  24. It’s funny to read this post because even at my age when I receive birthday cards they all seem to say something about how old I’m becoming (I’m 20). It’s all jokes but I can’t help, but think how life is passing by and another birthday has passed. However, we have to take in consideration all things we have lived and the accomplishments and wisdom that comes with age. I look at my grandma (86) and she still has a fun exciting life. She always has parties at her house and travels a lot with her friends. She does wear sensible shoes, but she has it going on. In fact all the gifts that she gets is for alcohol or sexy lingerie. We are never too old to enjoy ourselves.


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