“What’s that?” you ask.
The term is commonly used to denote a loose or crass woman. However, because I have a dear friend who uses this as an enduring term for me, I like to think of it differently. My definition is a woman who is secure in her sexuality, comfortable flirting and playing. She knows how to be sexy and suggestive and not cross over to bawdy, ribald, obscene, vulgar, crude, coarse, lewd, dirty, or smutty. I think of Mae West as the exemplar.
You are a hoochie mama if:
- You laugh at others’ funny, suggestive (not vulgar) jokes.
- You occasionally make double entendres in private, to close friends or your lover.
- You find some of the cartoons in Playboy funny.
- You occasionally wear sexy clothing to appropriate events (not to work). You are not afraid to show cleavage or skin when it is appropriate for the function (e.g., cocktail party, formal event, beach).
- You are comfortable flirting with your dates and others who seem comfortable with it (not with your boss or his boss, or your best friend’s husband if he seems uncomfortable).
You are not a hoochie mama if:
- You get offended when anyone makes any suggestive comment in a non-work setting. (I expect you to be offended if it is inappropriate, directed at you, at work, or raunchy).
- You feel it is inappropriate to exude any sexuality outside of your own home.
You have to decide for yourself if 1) you are a hoochie mama, and 2) if you aren’t, do you want to be? If the latter, how can you loosen up a bit without crossing the line to crassness?
You may wonder how I received the “Hoochie Mama” pet name from my friend. He and his wife live in New Orleans so two years ago they invited me to attend Mardi Gras with them. I did, and came home with 50 pounds of beads. I had a great time. Since most people think there is only one way to get beads, if someone playful heard of my bead bounty, he’d look at me slyly. He’d say: “You must have done a lot of flashing to get all those beads.”
So I created this hoochie-mama response: “There are various ways to earn beads. I won’t share my secrets, but I will tell you to look for me in the next ‘Middle-Aged Women Gone Wild’ video. The good thing about being middle aged, is you don’t have to raise your shirt so high to get beads.” I smile and wink and move on. He usually laughs heartily.
Okay. Maybe I crossed the line.
“It’s not the men in my life, but the life in my men that counts.” —Mae West
“I only like two kinds of men — domestic and imported.” —Mae West