Fully understanding Grandmas and the vast spectrum of Grandmas that exist, because you need to know this stuff if you're a Grandma!

What is the spectrum of Grandma? Where do I fall?

Grandmas come in all shapes, sizes, ages, and eras. Yes, all grandmas are female, but it is more the essence of grandmaness than femininity that unites us grandmothers as a group.

So how can you determine with whom to best align your Grandma traits? Which little old lady should you most often emulate? The votes are in and the crowd (me) has spoken.  Here are the top Grans, by category, and why they're so fantastic they're likely to make your pacemaker skip a beat.

Wisest Lady in all the Land: Nora Ephron.

On the day that Nora Ephron died, Grandmas all over the globe wept. Nora had the spunk of a Limited-Too shopper and the wisdom of a Bodhisattva.  She said things like, "Oh, how I regret not having worn a bikini for the entire year I was twenty-six. If anyone young is reading this, go, right this minute, put on a bikini, and don’t take it off until you’re thirty-four." This is good stuff, grandbabies! Nora, who likely is up in Heaven seated next to God, acting as Her therapist, left us far too soon and quickly, but certainly not with things left unsaid.  

 

Biggest Mouth: Dorothy Parker.

Dorothy Parker has said the most Grandma things.  If you ever should find yourself at a loss for words (which, I'll have you know, is rather un-grandma-like), simply quote DP and you'll be safe.  

“I’d rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.”

“That would be a good thing for them to cut on my tombstone: Wherever she went, including here, it was against her better judgment.”

Her humor is timeless and endless—she's the truest of Grandmas in her use of words because she seems to have had an opinion on every subject out there. And for those things for which she didn't have a quippy phrase, she resorted to rhyming poetry. Does it get more Granny than poetry? It does not.

By the time you swear you’re his,
Shivering and sighing,
And he vows his passion is
Infinite, undying -
Lady, make a note of this:
One of you is lying.

 

Most Dedicated To The Craft (of being a Gran): Betty White

Betty is such a Grandma devotee that she has been playing Grandmas in film and on television (and probably some radio, too) for the past thirty-one years.  

 

Overall most Grandma-like: Elaine Benes

The woman who best embodies the aura of Gma is me. No I'm kidding. It's Elaine Benes, of Seinfeld fame. 

Elaine is appropriately uncaring. She is bold and unafraid to speak her mind.  She knows that she isn't always the smartest or most attractive gal in the room (but often is the only gal in the room, aside from Jerry's rotating cast of girlfriends), but she won't let that hold her back. She walks the walk. And like a true Grandma, she is constantly changing her hairstyle to find what best suits both the current fashion trend and her growing laziness. 

Furthermore, Elaine perfectly experiences the trials and tribulations of life as a Grandma.  Like all Grandmas, Elaine takes the friends she can get: her ex-boyfriend, his overly neurotic childhood friend, and his disaster-prone neighbor who hasn't had a good hair day in 25 years.  Like all Grandmas, Elaine works so little that it's hard to even tell if she goes to her job every day. And like all Grandmas, she sometimes spends her nights doing literally nothing, just sitting in a chair and staring.