I will be super-busy all day because it is my birthday, and we’re having lots of people over, plus debuting our home-brewed beer for public consumption later this afternoon. To illustrate the passage of time, here’s a picture of my great-grandmother and her cousin. It was taken almost 100 years ago:
I knew my great-grandma well; she lived long enough to become a very old lady. Her sons fought in World War II, and eventually she saw (to her dismay) her grandchildren become hippies and Vietnam War protesters and (to her further disapproval) her great-grandchildren wear Doc Martens and spiky hair-dos. We called her “Big Grandma.”
I never saw Big Grandma smile like she’s smiling in the photo, though — or at all as far as I remember. She was very stern. If I live as long as she did, or even if not, I hope to remain less flinty.
Please feel free to discuss whatever. Open thread!
Happy Birthday! I don’t think you will ever be flinty.
Happy Birthday, Betty! May your beer always be delightful and delicious.
Happy Birthday! Have a lovely day!
Happy Birthday, Betty.
Were unisex hats a thing in the 1910s?
Selamat harijadi, Betty Cracker.
Iowa Old Lady
Happy birthday, Betty. Perhaps the beer will mellow the potential flintiness.
“Happy Birthday!” and all that sort of thing, to be sure — but how exactly does the picture illustrate the passage of time?
Big ole hound
@Amir Khalid: I think that is why she is laughing. That coif was never meant for a hat!
Happy Birthday! And may your inaugural beer augur well.
Happy birthday, Betty. Stay not flinty.
Great pic. Faces look so contemporary. Am glad we can dress more comfortably today.
mai naem mobile
Happy Birthday Ms.Cracker. I love really old pictures. Famous people.and.not famous people. Michael Beschloss posts some really cool old pics in his twitter feed.
Nice picture. Happy Birthday! You have some distinguished company.
Same us some home-brew, please.
Hippo birdy two ewes, hippo birdy two ewes hippo birdy dear BC, hippo birdy two ewes!
hope you have a great day
mai naem mobile
My niece is going to Beijing on a school trip. My sis and niece went to a Q and A with the teachers going along. They were talking about being very careful with electronics and petty theft. Assume all your phones/laptops etc.are hacked. Its got my sister kind of concerned.
My paternal grandmother [Mandy] was considered a terror by most of the family but when she visited with us for a month when I was about 15 years old, we bonded. I thought the lady had guts and backbone.
Anyway, she didn’t have much money but left me enough money in her will to pay for a year’s tuition in college, away from home. She paved the way to my intellectual freedom.
Flinty? Well, my nickname around here is The Curmudgeon. But I think I just have guts and backbone. :-)
Mandy would have been proud.
And many more birthdays for Betty!
@mai naem mobile: Hope she has a great time! It should be an adventure.
Beware of friendly Chinese officials bearing envelopes stuffed with cash, though…. ;-)
Happy Birthday, Betty Cracker! You are the only reason I’d ever want to visit Florida. What an amazing picture that is. We have a bunch of similar pictures from that period of my great grandparents and my husband’s great grandparents. No one ever smiled in those pictures and we call my husband’s side “the axe murderers” because they all look so very creepy. In one enormous portrait of the entire family on my side there is only one person smiling, my great aunt who, as a young child and as an old woman, had an intense sense of the ridiculous but she was also suicedal and had a tough life.
Have a Happy Birthday and I hope you have many Samoa.
I hope you have a great birthday filled with lots of big grins!
Happy Birthday to you!
Maybe Grandma is smiling because she did not yet have hippie grandchildren?
I bet they ARE laughing about the matching outfits and on how her hat perches on top of her Gibson Girl coif.
Gin & Tonic
Don’t want to be that guy amidst your celebration, but RIP Clark Terry.
Happy Birthday. You’ll never be flinty…a little chert-y maybe…
Happy birthday, Betty! You bring such joy and original, cutting-edge snark to these environs. Live forever, o Cracker!
As for my Sunday morning, I’m at the theatre for the Royal Opera’s production of “Andrea Chénier” starring two of my favourite singers, Jonas Kaufmann and Eva Maria Westbroek. I’ve heard “Chénier” but have never seen it, so this should be a real treat! But getting up early and driving 30 miles in a thick fog was not.
Happy Birthday, Betty!
People look so stern in 19th century photographs because they required holding still for several seconds of long camera exposure with the materials of the time. Photographers instructed their subjects to keep a neutral face because it’s easier for people to consciously hold such an expression for several seconds.
As a result we see our ancestors as dour and humorless, while they may not really have been like this in their lives.
Happy birthday, BC!
Happy Birthday, Betty. Best wishes for the future.
Have fun with your friends and hope every one likes the beer.
Happy Birthday Gator Girl!
Happy Birthday, Betty. Your posts are too funny and interesting to becoming from a flinty person. Hope the beer is hoppily delish.
What a great picture! I’m glad you got to know her, even if the generational/culture gap made things tough at times. We all, of course, have similar problems with the kids-who-won’t-get-off-our-lawns, but somehow the country manages to struggle through. Likely due to folks like your great-grandparents.
Happy birthday, Betty.
You’re the best thing from FL since….OK, you’re the best thing from FL ever.
Happy Birthday, Betty. Love the picture. And flintiness is highly underrated.
Happy Birthday – hopefully not one of those with a zero on the end, they are annoying.
Funny coincidence, we just received a package of family photos of a similar vintage – but no smiles as folks very rarely smiled in photos back then!
Happy Birthday Chicken Lady
Happy Birthday, Betty!
Have a peaceful day.
HAPPY DAY OF REVOLUTION!!! EAT ALL THE CAKE TOO!
Villago Delenda Est
Happy Birthday, Ms. Cracker!
Meanwhile, this is the fourth weekend in a row that either my Saturday or Sunday (or both) New York Times couldn’t be delivered because of weather. It’s getting tedious. At least I got the puzzles yesterday.
Best wishes from the northeast, where there’s actual melting outside.
The photo is fascinating. I can’t put my finger on what seems so different about it, except all the photos from my family’s ages-ago, involving grownups posing for a camera, really don’t have the smiles.
Happy Birthday! I have a very old photo of two of my great-grandparents. They were the ones who came here, decided they didn’t like it, and went back. All of their children stayed here, though.
@Elizabelle Y’know, that’s an interesting point. I recall, some years ago, I saw a book of portraits of people who were living in 19th century insane asylums. What struck me was how modern their faces looked.
Many happy returns of the day, Betty! Great Grandma rocks that picture.
Happy Birthday, Betty! I hope you have a wonderful day!
I have a bookmark that says, “I get more cleaning done in the ten minutes before someone comes over than I do in a week”. That’s how I roll!
I hope the beer is terrific, too.
Best wishes for a very Happy Birthday!
Happy birthday, Betty! Would love to try your homebrew!
Mnemosyne (iPad Mini)
Happy Birthday Betty! Have an enjoyable day!
I love old photos, that one included.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
Happy Birthday Betty Cracker (the unflinty great granddaughter of Big Grandma). And many more.
Very late to the thread, Betty but happy birthday and hope that you had a good celebration!
February kids are the best! (I know because I are one.)
1) I broke my shovel this morning!
2) My arms at killing me!
3) I bought two new shovels at lunch.
4) I wished for my driveway to melt faster, so I can try to chip off the slushy coat before it freezes solid tonight.
5) I really really hope I didn’t jinx the roof just now.
Many Happy Returns Betty!
Let me add to the chorus of well wishes on your birthday…but I think being flinty would be just fine. Cool word.
Happy birthday & many happy returns, BettyC!
In my experience, the older one gets, the more one’s core personality shows through the social training & the mannerisms of a particular era. People with a good sense of humor have a head start in that department, so your eventual descendents should have pretty good memories of you.
Just Some Fuckhead
Gram Cracker looks like a super lady.
Happy birthday, Betty!
Love the photo!
May you live long and prosper.
Happy birthday! Enjoy your day in every way!
@Just Some Fuckhead: I bet she goes well with chocolate and marshmallows, too.
Happy birthday, Betty! Hope your day is fun.
Your great-grandma looks a bit like my mom, actually — kind of a Southern type, my mom having been from Texas with some Missouri and Louisiana ancestry thrown in.
Happy birthday, Betty! Many happy returns.
I hate to bring this up, but was your great-grandmother transgender? Just sayin…..
GHayduke (formerly lojasmo)
Happy birthday, Betty Cracker!
Which is which?
Paul in KY
Happy Birthday, Betty! Great photo of your ancestors.
I’m sure your great-grandchildren to be are looking forward to New and Improved Big Grandma…now with less flint!