Friday, December 6, 2019

Winter Writer Series: "Three Generations Of Butts" By Janie Emaus

     I'm always excited to feature one of my fellow Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop authors on the blog. I've known Janie Emaus since we met in 2014 at the convention, and we've been good friends ever since. I admire her writing style, and she never fails to make me laugh when she writes humorous stories about aging (because I can sooooo relate!). Her essay that I'm sharing today is one of my favorites because I have been in this situation before. Janie keeps it real, so I'm sure you'll be laughing with me on this one, too.....

                               THREE GENERATIONS OF BUTTS

Hair whitens. Butts droop. Arms sag. Aging is not a pretty picture, is it?  

And it’s even less pretty when you’re in a dressing room with all those mirrors that don’t hide anything. Rather, they emphasis all those parts of your body which you’d like to imagine looked differently.  

But those mirrors don’t lie.

I was faced with that painful truth when I went shopping with my ninety-something mother and my thirty-something daughter. Three generations of women made from the same mold.

The similarities were still there, but the differences were hard to ignore.  

Years ago, my butt was as firm and ripe as a melon, just like my daughter’s. My thighs were smooth, void of those craters and bumps making one think of the moon surface. My arms didn’t have that flabby effect. My hair was a natural blonde. 

After looking from my daughter to myself, I wanted to bolt out of that room.  In fact, I wanted to bolt out of 2019 and into 1990.

Then I looked at my ninety-four-year mom. And felt even worse. 

I saw where my body was going!

And I’m not convinced that any amount of exercise can stop it from happening.  (Although, I don’t think I’ll ever wear old lady under panties). 

While I was lamenting the state of my future body, my daughter blurted out.  “Ugh, I hate my waist.”

Me: “Your waist is perfect.  Look at this extra skin around mine.” 

My mother: “What are you two talking about?  I’m one big wrinkle.  My butt is flatter than melted butter. And my boobs are like bananas.”

With that, we all started laughing.  There was no age difference in our giggles. Just three happy women, trying to find a decent pair of jeans that hugged our bodies in just the right way. No matter what that body looked like.

And we were determined to succeed. Because no matter our age, we all want to look good when facing the world.
No butts about it. 


Janie Emaus believes when the world is falling apart, we're just one laugh away from putting it together again.

In a previous life (before cell phones and the World Wide Web) she assumed a famous persona and wrote for the Goosebumps and Fear Street series.
As herself, she wrote educational videos, ad copy for adult videos, and dozens of stories for The Los Angeles Times Kids’ Reading Room Page.

In this life, she is the author of the young adult novel, Mercury in Retro Love and the science fiction story, Passage 99. Her essays have appeared in hundreds of anthologies and websites. 

She was proud to be named a 2013 BlogHer Voice of the Year. And beyond thrilled to win an honorary mention in the 2016 Erma Bombeck Writing Competiton. But no award (well, maybe the Pulitzer) ranks higher than her family.
To learn more about Janie visit her website at

Social media links:

Amazon page:


  1. Hi Marcia - Thanks so much for having me. I can't wait to see you next year! There is nothing like laughing with old friends.

    1. I can't wait to see you, too! Always a pleasure to feature you on my site!

  2. I, for one, would give anything to look like my mother at her age. I think she looks better than I do. Of course, I've been on my own for years so she does have that much less stress.

  3. Very funny, and I can totally relate because we have three generations of women who shop together as well. Aging is ROUGH, but laughter certainly helps!

    1. Absolutely---it's what gets me through this whole aging thing.

  4. I am older than my Mom was when she passed away, and I never had a daughter. So I will never have the 3 generation experience. Also, I'm not about to ask my almost 30 year old son what his butt looks like, despite having changed several thousands of his diapers years ago! As for my boobs, they are like hanging baskets, which I guess is not bad for this senior citizen who loves flower gardening.



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