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An angel on one shoulder, a devil on the other

My family has always joked that instead of a devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other, I have my two grandmothers.

Doris, my paternal grandmother, was a rough-and-tumble, no pussyfooting, all nonsense kind of gal. She was a prison guard, a volunteer sheriff, a big fan of rollerderby, bowling, and cards, and loved a good dirty joke.

Shirley is the polar opposite. Prim, proper, and always concerned with what people think, her favorite hobbies are sewing and sitting quietly. Also, she’s a bit of a klepto. Her favorite pieces of silverware are those she knicked from higher-end restaurants.


Neither is completely bad or good, but I’m told I’m so much like both of them, the family joke has stayed alive and well all my life.

I’d told my mom I was going with a friend to her tat appointment. My mom asked dryly, “And when is YOURS?” I told her it was on the 19th. She wasn’t a fan of the idea, and when I told her my original design idea, she suggested Doris and Shirley. I realized I’d never have come up with a better idea in a million years, and thanks to the patience of my incredible artist, I’m beyond thrilled and now have a loving tribute and fun story on me.

I present to you, the devilish angel and the angelic devil on my shoulders, Doris and Shirley.


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