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Betty White Everything Old is New Again

Updated on January 19, 2012
Betty White - still the Golden Girl
Betty White - still the Golden Girl

Betty White Everything Old is New Again

Betty White isn’t all that old. She is only 90 (going on 91 next year). But if you had watched her as the hilarious, boisterous guest-host of “Saturday Night Live” recently, you would swear she is going on 39.

She gives new meaning to that classic song – do you remember it? – “Everything Old is New Again.”

Watch Ann Reinking dancing to “Everything Old is New Again” from the movie, “All That Jazz”

Let me tell you what I know about Betty White. Most of us know her as the naïve and unsophisticated Rose Nylund from the long-running “Golden Girls” television show. More about that show later. But Betty has had a very long and varied 61-year career in show business in addition to that TV show.

She was born in Oakland Park, Illinois January 17, 1922 and named Betty Marion White. In her autobiography, she states she was named Betty and not Elizabeth because her parents did not want her to be nicknamed Beth, Liza, Ellie, etc. Her parents, Tess and Horace White (of German and Greek ancestry), moved across the country to Los Angeles, California when Betty was only two years old.

Betty attended Beverly Hills High School and appeared in leading roles in various plays while there. Her high school is well known for some other famous graduates including Angelina Jolie, Nicolas Cage, Lenny Kravitz, David Schwimmer, Gina Gershon, Rhonda Fleming, Jackie Cooper, Rob Reiner, Corbin Bernsen and Antonio Sabato, Jr., to name a few.

Gertrude Berg creator of "The Goldbergs"
Gertrude Berg creator of "The Goldbergs"

After graduating, Betty took roles in local theater – the Bliss-Hayden-Little-Theater-Group, and soon began working on radio in the Los Angeles area. In the 40s she appeared on shows such as “Blondie,” “The Great Gildersleeve,” and “This is Your FBI.” Her first television break came in 1949, when she became the “girl Friday” for host Al Jarvis’ music and interview show on local TV station KLAC. Jarvis left the show in 1952 and Betty became the new host. That year, she and two male partners formed Bandy Productions which would launch her first situation comedy, "Life with Elizabeth" (1952-1955). She was nominated for her first Emmy in 1952 for her role on that show and won.

In 1954 she had her own talk show briefly, “The Betty White Show,” in which she demonstrated her friendly, neighbor-next-door persona that made audiences so comfortable.

Footnote: Betty was one of only two women in the early days of television to be a TV triple-threat: co-creator, producer and star. Gertrude Berg was the other – creator/writer, producer and star.

Footnote: Betty was named the honorary Mayor of Hollywood in 1955.

Allen Ludden 1917 - 1981
Allen Ludden 1917 - 1981

Betty had three husbands – no, not all at the same time. She was married to Frederick (Dick) Barker for six months in`1945 and divorced; married to Lane Allan for two years (1947-1949) and divorced; and married to Allen Ludden, game show host, for 18 years from 1963 until his death, June 9, 1981.

Although best known as the devious Sue Ann Nivens on the classic sitcom, “Mary Tyler Moore” (1970) and the spacey Rose Nylund on “The Golden Girls,” Betty was a frequent and favorite guest celebrity/panelist on numerous game shows including every version of “Password” (1961), “The Hollywood Squares” (1965), “Match Game” (1973) and “The $10,000 Pyramid” (1973) as well as many others.

Footnote: Betty’s film debut was the role of Kansas Senator Elizabeth Ames Adams in the drama, ”Advise and Consent” (1962).

1934 - 2010
1934 - 2010

Betty was originally considered for the role of the sexpot, Blanche, on “The Golden Girls” (1985) However, Betty had already played the aggressive man-hunter, Sue Ann Nivens, on “Mary Tyler Moore” (1970), and Rue McClanahan had played the introverted Vivian on "Maude” (1972). So the producers decided it was best not to have these two actresses reprise similar characters. Therefore, Betty got the part of naïve Rose Nylund and Rue played the oversexed (to put it mildly) Blanche.

All About Hollywood

Fast forward to "Saturday Night Live" May 8, 2010. A wildly successful viral marketing campaign was launched by Facebook fans that resulted in Betty White becoming a host on SNL. During her opening monologue, Betty joked that she made her live television debut in 1952 because “then they didn’t know how to tape things. I don’t know what this show’s excuse is.”

“I really have to thank Facebook,” Betty says, “I didn’t know what Facebook was and now that I do know what it is, it sounds like a huge waste of time. I would never think that people on it are losers, but that's only because I'm polite," she joked with her impeccable comic timing. “At my age, if I want to connect with old friends, I need a Ouija board. Facebook just sounds like a drag. In my day, seeing pictures of people's vacations was considered a punishment."

Betty first appeared in a MacGruber sketch (a take-off film imitating the former TV hero, McGyver) as -- you guessed it -- the incompetent, bumbling gadget guy's grandmother. In true MacGruber fashion, Betty did nothing more than add to his inefficiency by distracting the wannabe-hero from diffusing a bomb.

Next was the skit, “Delicious Dish,” in which White's muffin (don’t ask!) was the topic of discussion. "My muffin hasn't had a cherry since 1939," Betty declared while Molly Shannon and Ana Gasteyer chomped on her "yeasty, crusty" muffins.

Many of the jokes and skits featured her estimable age, as the majority of the punch lines were either how she's the old gal in the room, or she's-old-but-making-shocking-statements. “Entertainment Weekly” declared that she was "funny, vulgar and totally charming."

Even the “New York Times” gushed that Betty’s show "was one of the strongest outings of the season. With energy, enthusiasm and plain old laughs, Ms. White and the SNL cast and crew more than delivered on this much promoted episode's promise."

At the end, the SNL cast sang the “Golden Girls” theme song, “Thank You for Being a Friend” as a tribute to White -- with the Golden Girl herself chiming in with a screaming, punk rock version of the tune.

For Mature Viewers

Back to the past. Between 1958 and 1973, Betty White remained in the public eye as a popular guest panelist on various TV game shows, a frequent fixture on talk shows, and a pitchwoman for commercial products. Many younger fans had no idea she was really an actor. Most thought of her as a personality who makes a career out of being a panelist.

Betty was a regular as a panelist on the game show, “Password” (1961–1975), where she met the show's host, Allen Ludden, whom she married in 1963. In the 70s and 80s, she appeared on the updated versions of Password (“Password Plus” and “Super Password”). She also made frequent game show appearances on “What's My Line?”,To Tell the Truth”, “Match Game” and “$10,000 Pyramid”.

Footnote: Both Password and Pyramid were created by her friend, Bob Stewart. Betty was even offered the chance to host her own game show which she declined.

The perception about Betty White as a wholesome TV personality changed forever in 1973 when her friends, Mary Tyler Moore, and husband, Grant Tinker, asked her to play a one-shot guest appearance as Sue Ann Nivens on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show.” This inspired casting-against-type of Betty as a middle-aged, man-hungry, quick-with-a-quip Sue Ann turned into a five-season full-time gig (1973-1977) and won her two Emmy Awards and a host of new fans. When that show ended, Betty was rushed into her own "The Betty White Show" as Joyce Whitman, fading TV star. The show lasted one season and Betty was back on game shows, and hosting the annual Tournament of Roses parade on NBC, which she had done since 1970.

Betty also found time to appear in several TV movies including "With this Ring" (ABC1978) and "The Best Place to Be" (NBC 1979). From 1983 through 1986, she played Ellen Harper Jackson on the hit show, “Mama's Family” together with her future “Golden Girls” co-star Rue McClanahan.

Footnote: Betty appeared numerous times on the “Tonight Show” in skits with Jack Paar and later Johnny Carson.

Golden Girls 1985 - 1992

Bea Arthur 1923 - 2009
Bea Arthur 1923 - 2009
Estelle Getty 1923 - 2008
Estelle Getty 1923 - 2008
Rue, Bea, Betty and Estelle
Rue, Bea, Betty and Estelle

Betty then landed her most memorable role as the sweet but slightly ditzy Rose Nylund on “The Golden Girls” (NBC), a show about the lives of four widowed or divorced senior citizens living together in a home in Miami, Florida. This program was immensely successful and ran from 1985 through 1992. Originally, Betty wasn’t certain she could do justice to the role of Rose who was written as such an incredibly innocent and trusting person. The creator of the show took her aside and explained that she should not play Rose as stupid, but as someone who is “terminally naïve” - an individual who always believed the first explanation she heard.

Footnote: Betty won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series for the first season of “The Golden Girls” and was nominated every year of the show's eight-year run. She had the “terminally naïve” persona down pat.

Footnote: Estelle Getty was imported from the Broadway stage to play the part of Bea Arthur's mother in "Golden Girls." Both women were the same age, 62 years young.

Betty was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1995 and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame together with the star of her late husband, Allen Ludden. When “Golden Girls" ended in 1992, Betty joined Rue McClanahan and Estelle Getty on "The Golden Palace" which moved their characters to a new network (CBS) and a new locale - a modest hotel. The show flopped, but CBS put Betty into "Bob", the network's latest series with Bob Newhart, in the hopes of adding some adrenaline into fading ratings. The series died despite her efforts.

But not Betty’s popularity. She became a frequent commercial spokesperson, and eager to return to a series, she accepted the part of Shirley, mother to Marie Osmond in the sitcom, "Maybe This Time" (ABC 1995). This time, her character was oft-married and free-spirited, but she created an entirely new persona, again demonstrating her extraordinarily wide range.

Footnote: Betty was offered the role of Helen Hunt’s mother in the film, “As Good as it Gets” (1997) but turned it down because she objected to the treatment of the dog in the movie.

Within the span of four years, Betty was cast in several features (television and big screen), and co-starred in numerous television series including the short-lived, "Me & George" (1998) and "Ladies Man" (1999). Her voice was the main focus as she brought life to the animated characters in the family feature, "Whispers: An Elephant's Tale" (2000). and as Aunt Sophie in the child-popular series, "The Wild Thornberry's: The Origin of Donnie" (2001).

Footnote: Betty had a supporting role in the comedy slash horror film, “Lake Placid,” (1999) as a seemingly sweet, innocent widow with a shocking foul mouth who is later revealed to have raised and fed the giant crocodile (the film’s nemesis) which had accidentally eaten her husband.


In 2003, Betty returned to the big screen in the hilarious comedy "Bringing Down the House," which co-starred Steve Martin and Queen Latifah. Betty played the role of Steve's nosy, prudish neighbor. She also became a popular guest star on a variety of TV series, including "Ally McBeal," "The Simpsons," "King of the Hill," "Everwood" and "Malcolm in the Middle." In addition to a role on the popular sit-com "That 70s Show," she was especially appealing as the sweet-smiling but acid-tongued Catherine Piper, a recurring role she originated on the legal drama "The Practice" in 2004, and carried over into the follow-up series, "Boston Legal."

In the television broadcast, “TV Land Awards” (2007), Betty starred in a parody of the “Ugly Betty” program, aptly titled “Ugly Betty White.” She played the title character with Charo playing her sister. Because of her outstanding performance, the producers signed her to play herself as the victim of Wilhemina Slater’s temper as they both vie for a cab in the episode, “Bananas for Betty” which aired December 6, 2007.

Betty has won six Emmy Awards, three American Comedy Awards (including a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990), and two Viewers for Quality Television Awards.In 1995, she was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame. She has also won numerous awards for her charitable work with animals.

In January, 2010, she received the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award. That same month she was seen in a hilarious Super Bowl football commercial. Hard to say which she enjoyed more.

Betty, You never fail to connect with your audience. That's the definition of a legend.


© Copyright BJ Rakow 2010, 2011. All rights reserved. Author, "Much of What You Know about Job Search just Ain't So." An enlightening book about job search with dynamic facts about interviewing, negotiating, networking, and creating a powerful resume.


Betty White Won 6 Emmy Awards

Emmy AWARDS
Program
Year
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
Life with Elizabeth
1952
Outstanding Supporting Actress Comedy Series
The Mary Tyler Moore Show
1975
Outstanding Supporting Actress Comedy Series
The Mary Tyler Moor Show
1976
Outstanding Host/Game Show
Just Men
1983
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
The Golden Girls
1986
Outstanding Guest Actress Comedy Series
The John Larroquette Show
1996

Betty White Has 13 Emmy Nominations

Emmy Nominations
Program
Year
Best Actress
Life with Elizabeth
1951
Outstanding Supporting Actress Comedy Series
The Mary Tyler Moore Show
1977
Outstanding Game Show Host
Just Men
1984
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
The Golden Girls
1987
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
The Golden Girls
1988
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
The Golden Girls
1989
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
The Golden Girls
1990
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
The Golden Girls
1991
Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
The Golden Girls
1992
Outstanding Guest Actress Comedy Series
Suddenly Susan
1997
Outstanding Guest Actress Comedy Series
Yes, Dear
2003
Outstanding Guest Actress Drama Series
The Practice
2004
Outstanding Guest Actress Comedy Series
My Name is Earl
2009

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    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 5 years ago from south Florida

      How nice to meet you, gmwilliams. Delighted to meet another fan of Betty White. You are so right. Betty at 90 just keeps on getting better and better. She IS a marvel! With her enviable sense of comic timing and sweet, knowing smile, she is a joy to watch - on television and in films. Thank you for visiting.

    • gmwilliams profile image

      Grace Marguerite Williams 5 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

      To drbj: Great hub. I have always loved Betty White. She is the definition of a consummate professional. She just gets better with age. She is now 90 years young. Age is just a number; attitude counts. This woman is a marvel!

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 6 years ago from south Florida

      What gracious comments, Sun-Girl. Thank you. Betty thanks you, too. It's nice to know that wisdom and enjoyment can be packaged together. :)

    • Sun-Girl profile image

      Sun-Girl 6 years ago from Nigeria

      Interesting piece of article which is so enjoyable and wisdom packaged.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 6 years ago from south Florida

      Dearest Audrey, you are so right,

      Who doesn't love sweet Betty White?

      Betty is our idol, our icon, our favorite granny-role-player in films and on TV. I have always admired her since I first saw her way back in the day on 'Password.'

      From all that I have learned about her, she must be as beautiful inside as she is on the outside - especially her devotion to animal causes.

      How lovely of you to have a special folder of my hubs. That's funny, I have one, too. And thank you for that outstanding comment - you ARE a love!

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 6 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      Who doesnt love Betty White? She's an american icon. And only you could do this lady justice. You just don't miss a thing. I have a "special folder" containing all of your hubs and this one is going to be added to the collection. Another thing I love about Betty is her love and devotion to animals. There is only one Betty White - she will never be replaced or equalled. And neither will you, my friend! :) vocalcoach

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      "Pants with pee pockets" Now there's a provocative topic for a new hub!!!

    • Sweetsusieg profile image

      Sweetsusieg 7 years ago from Michigan

      I about died laughing when she ACTUALLY swore in Lake placid... BTW, I'm starting now clipping coupons... Hmmm wonder if they'll still have Depend's by the time I'm 88 1/2? Maybe they'll make pants with pee pockets??? It could happen...

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Me, too, Susie, Betty was a hoot in both those TV shows, and you and I may be two of maybe just a handful of people who actually viewed that "Lake Placid" film. I can laugh just thinking about Betty in that movie.

      Don't worry about accidents when you get to be 88 1/2 - they tell me you can rely on Rely and depend on Depends. :)

    • Sweetsusieg profile image

      Sweetsusieg 7 years ago from Michigan

      I always liked Betty on the Mary Tyler Moore show, and Golden Girls her ditziness was excellent but I fell in love when she played in the Movie "Lake Placid". It was great! She just gets better with age. If I could grow old like her it wouldn't be a problem... I'm just afraid of peeing my pants by her age!

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hello, JG. We are so on the same wavelength. Ann Reinking dancing in "All that Jazz" and Betty White in almost anything she ever appears or appeared in, are two of my all-time favorites, too.

      Welcome to the club and many thanks for your visit and approving comments.

    • JamaGenee profile image

      Joanna McKenna 7 years ago from Central Oklahoma

      What a thrill that you included my absolute favorite scene in "All That Jazz" in a hub about Betty White! She's been one of my all-time favorites for as long as I can remember. Old is new again, indeed. BW could live forever and would never age a day!

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, mpg - thanks for dropping by. Someone asked me what caused the re-emergence of Betty's popularity after Golden Girls. Like you and Austinstar, I think it was partly due to her wonderful comic timing in "The Proposal." She was a triple hoot.

      You're welcome - it's definitely my pleasure.

    • MPG Narratives profile image

      Marie Giunta 7 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      I'm with Austinstar, she was a "hoot" in the movie "The Proposal", mind you Betty White has stolen the show in many of her roles, wonderful actress. Will have to download SNL and watch it. Thanks for all the great info on her drbj.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      I'm so glad you did, too, Austinstar. Wasn't "The Proposal" a funny movie? Especially the parts with Betty. She is so good as a comic actress that you tend to forget she is acting. She becomes the character.

      Yes, the dancing around the bonfire was a hoot and so was Gramma Betty trying to fit the too-big-in-the-bust wedding dress on Sandra.

    • Austinstar profile image

      Austinstar 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Wow! Everything I ever wanted to know about Betty White! I just watched "The Proposal" with my fav actress, Sandra Bullock and Betty played "Gammy" and boy, was she a hoot. I loved that movie! The best scene in the movie was the one where Gammy and Elizabeth (Bullock) were in the woods dancing around the bonfire. I literally was rolling on the floor laughing.

      I remembered that you had written this hub on Betty, so I came to read it. Glad I did!

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, Dolores - nice to make your acquaintance. Betty has a one-of-a-kind personality - charming, friendly, funny and endearing.

      And it is cool that fans of all ages recognize that. If you have time, stop by my newest hub about Betty: "Betty White Back on TV." Thanks for the visit.

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

      drbj - Betty White just gets better and better. She is an enchanting, vivacious personality. It's so cool how she has such a huge fan base of young people.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Dear Hummingbird - you are most welcome, it is my pleasure.

      I think you hit the mark when you said Betty's genuineness is one of her most endearing qualities. You can't fake "genuine."

      It must have been fun hearing the Golden Girls' real voices for the first time. I remember watching a portion of an old John Wayne movie on TV in an Asian country and it made a serious movie very humorous to me. Not the the language was funny - it was simply the incongruity.

    • Hummingbird5356 profile image

      Hummingbird5356 7 years ago

      I used to watch the Golden Girls when I lived in Germany. I often used to wonder what their voices really sounded like but the actors they used were very similar. I enjoyed that show and anything that she is in.

      She is one of those genuine people who did not let showbusinenss ruin her.

      Thank you for this collection.

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Yes, Maita, I really admire Betty. She's a survivor with so many years in the very fickle entertainment world - on radio, TV and in films.

      She has a marvelous young spirit and attitude and I think it shows in everything she does. Especially when she was Rose in the Golden Girls.

      Thank you for the visit and the lovely adjectives.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, Marco. I loved that Snickers commercial even though I knew that wasn't really Betty getting knocked to the ground, thank goodness. But as you pointed out, it was realistic!

      Thanks for the gracious comments. It's so nice to see you active on Hubpages again.

    • prettydarkhorse profile image

      prettydarkhorse 7 years ago from US

      Wow, this is an awesome hub about a woman who is loved by everybody. She looks younger. and is full of wit plus a well acknowledged career.

      Thank you for this wonderful tribute and well researched hub, You really like her, Maita

    • marcofratelli profile image

      marcofratelli 7 years ago from Australia

      A fantastic read & very well researched. I liked that Snickers ad, very witty and looked realistic when she was knocked over!

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, Amber, how nice to meet you. Sharing is my pleasure. Betty has always been one of my favorites - I even remember her on Password.

      Thank you for the visit and the "comprehensive" comment.

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 7 years ago

      Hi drjb

      A really comprehensive hub on Betty. She is definitely my favorite Golden Girl. Thanks for sharing.

      Amber:)

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, wrenfrost, thanks for the gracious comments.

      There is no question that Betty is one of a kind and a great role model for the rest of us. The only additional info I could learn about her brief first marriage was she was 23 when she married and her first husband was a pilot.

    • wrenfrost56 profile image

      wrenfrost56 7 years ago from U.K.

      Wow what a woman and what a hub! I had no idea she had such a career and what an interesting full life she's had. Only one of two women to be a 'triple threat' amazing and what about the breif first marriage, gosh. Another fine job and a great read. :)

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      billy - I agree with you 1000%. Betty is an inspiration for all of us, young and old. Wouldn't it be sublime if everyone had her attitude and her energy.

      Thanks for the visit and the kind words.

    • billyaustindillon profile image

      billyaustindillon 7 years ago

      drbj what a wonderful tribute to Betty White - she certainly is an inspiration to everyone young and old. She maintains her humor and vibrancy for all to see. What a shame there just aren't more people like her.

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, Pam. Delighted I could help fill in the gaps regarding your knowledge of Betty. I have always admired her, her personality and her skills as an actor. Happy you agree.

      Thanks for the visit and the very kind comments.

    • Pam Roberson profile image

      Pam Roberson 7 years ago from Virginia

      What an outstanding tribute to a wonderful woman and actress! Bravo! I love Betty White and The Golden Girls. :) I never knew half of this about her, so thank you for compiling so many interesting details about her here!

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Thank you, sgfr, for the visit and the "agreement with me" comment. I, too, think Betty is one of the incredibles (not the cartoon characters) and the Golden Girls is one of my all-time favorite TV programs.

    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago from USA

      Betty white IS incredible and I LOVE the Golden Girls!!!!!

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      The case of the missing avatar - that was strange. Thank you, SilverGenes, for identifying yourself. Your avatar is much too lovely to be invisible, Alexandra.

    • profile image

      SilverGenes 7 years ago

      Odd that my avatar went missing - Silvergenes/Alexandra :-)

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Since there is no name or avatar with your comment, I will address you as IP - Invisible Person. Thank you for your visit and your "great" comment.

      I like that line ..."trying to grab a bird" etc. Somehow I must have missed that broadcast so your comment is doubly appreciated. Come back and visit any time, IP.

    • profile image

       7 years ago

      This is just great! Betty White has been a favourite of mine for many years - Rose Nyland was brilliant and is responsible for delivering a line that will stay with me the rest of my life: "You don't realize how much you care for a man until you see him streaking toward the earth, trying to grab a bird". Thanks for the great hub!

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Thank you, Ellen, it is always my pleasure. Delighted that you are a fan of Betty's, too.

      I adored her on the Mary Tyler Moore Show but The Golden Girls was my favorite. It's not easy to act "dumb" and at the same time be appealing. But Betty managed to do it effortlessly.

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, katie, exactly! Betty White gives us all inspiration to try to follow in her footsteps. And to realize as you pointed out that sometimes all that is "old" becomes new again.

      Thank you for stopping by and you're welcome.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Then you are blessed, habee, because you have a lovely, intelligent, beautiful, talented mom.

      I appreciate your visit and your comment.

    • EllenGraeger profile image

      EllenGraeger 7 years ago from Madrid

      The Golden Girls - yes, I had a lot fun with that series during my last years living in Germany. And the "Saturday Night Life" show where Betty White acted recently came up in the Spanish news. Great memories, great hub. Thank you, drbj.

    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 7 years ago from I'm outta here

      Betty White is everything old new again, she gives me inspiration.....Love this hub. Thanks and Peace :)

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 7 years ago from Georgia

      I love Betty White - she's always reminded me of my mom!

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Thank you, Rochelle, for the "great job" and "wonderful recapping" comments. They will sustain me for at least another 24 hours.

      Love your comment: ..."learning how to grow old without getting older." That's the secret in a nutshell. Growing old has always been mandatory, but growing up is optional.

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hello, Uninvited Writer - how nice to meet you. I admired Betty as Sue Ann on MTM and just like you, loved her stories as Rose. She is multi-talented beyond a doubt.

      If she gets the opportunity to work on the Emmy Awards, the producers would probably hire a co-host as well to share the duties on this very long program.

      Now that we've met, you are no longer uninvited. Come back any time.

    • Rochelle Frank profile image

      Rochelle Frank 7 years ago from California Gold Country

      You did such a great job on this hub! Many interesting details here, and a wonderful recapping of her long career. She is a great inspiration for those of us learning how to grow old without getting older.

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 7 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      Great hub, add me to the chorus of those who love Betty. I remember her from Password too. She was great in MTM and I loved her in Golden Girls which I watch at least once a week in reruns. When she starts telling stories with all the Swedish names I always giggle.

      Hosting a show as long as the Emmy's might be hard for a woman her age though.

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Me, too. Duchess, that would be one funny program with Betty as host.

      Do you know, you have an eagle eye - I missed that. Of course there will always be detractors to say she could have won that year. :) Thanks for the heads up. Appreciate it.

    • profile image

      Duchess OBlunt 7 years ago

      Facebook subscribers have launched a second viral marketing campaign to have Betty White named as host for the Emmy Awards TV show. Wouldn't that be a hoot!

      TOO FUNNY. I hope it works :)

      The chart below says her first Emmy Award was in 1052!!! Amazing :)

    • drbj profile image
      Author

      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      OMG, Cris, my head is really swollen from those complimenting comments. Thank you, thank you. "Two thumbs waaaay up," Wow! So glad you found my hubs again and thanks for the fan mail. Wanna be my BFF?

    • Cris A profile image

      Cris A 7 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      Thank God for reruns I get to see Betty White and the rest of the truly golden golden girls! You did a nice tribute to the very talented Ms White - so thorough and highly entertaining. And Siskel and Ebert used to say, I give this hub "two thumbs up, way waaaay up!" :D

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      How are you, prasetio?

      I'm delighted that you have met Betty through this hub and know you will appreciate her talent even more as you become more familiar with her work.

      Thank you for the thumbs up and the rating. I appreciate you.

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hello, ladyjane, how nice to see you, your graciousness.

      I agree. That is one of Betty's remarkable talents - to be able to play two such very different characters and make them both believable, funny and true to life. Takes a very special person and a very special talent.

      Thank you for visiting and your kind comments.

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, Sherry. What a great idea. Think I'll find out who Betty's agent is and do just that.

      Thank you for the visit, the "great" comment, and the wonderful idea. Come back any time.

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, tracykarl, thanks for stopping by - happy you enjoyed this hub.

      Sorry you missed seeing Betty on SNL but I found an almost 47-minute-long video of the telecast on Hulu. Could not use it on my hub - it isn't supported by Hubpages.

      If you or any other readers would like to watch that performance, Google: "Hulu video of Betty White on SNL."

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, akirchner. I saw the film, "The Proposal," too, and thought Betty White was adorable. Especially the scene where she is trying to fit Sandra Bullock into her antique and too big wedding dress. Funny!!!

      She has done so much work on charitable causes for animals I could have filled a hub with just mention of her many awards. Glad you agree with me - she is a special actress and a special lady.

      Thanks for the visit and the "great" comments.

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 7 years ago from malang-indonesia

      I never knew about her before. But you give wonderful information about the little biography of Betty White. I really enjoy reading this hub. Thumbs Up for you and I rate this one!

      Prasetio

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      ladyjane1 7 years ago from Texas

      Great tribute to a great lady. I have always loved her in all her shows especially on Golden Girls and Mary Tyler Moore Show and her charactors were so different and that just shows how diversified and talented she is. I did see the SNL and I think it was the best I have seen in a while. Great hub. Cheers.

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      Sherry 7 years ago

      Great tribute to Betty White. You should send it to her agent!

    • tracykarl99 profile image

      Tracy 7 years ago from San Francisco

      I missed seeing Betty White on SNL - will have to try catching that. Enjoyed your hub ~ she was always so funny!

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Central Oregon

      She is one of my all time favorite people - her work for saving animals is incredible and she is just such a neat lady! I loved her in The Proposal recently and her gig on SNL was hilarious. Thanks for reminding me of her sweet, sweet face this morning! Great hub and great clips!

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, BJB - How could you have died? Funny writers don't die. They live on forever. Right?

      Thanks for the visit and the "great".

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      anginwu - You are proof that Betty, even today, can capture the admiration of an entirely new generation. Not easy. You are so right. She IS irresistible - must be those "Nellieanna" dimples.

      Delighted you enjoyed the read and also that you transplanted yourself. Our gain.

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, Nellieanna - you're so right. Some of the privileges of the Golden Years, after good health, of course, are the countless and wonderful memories of good times, beloved people and awesome entertainment. On the days when one can remember one's name, that is.

      Delighted that you enjoyed the hub and are also Betty's fan. Yes, you do resemble her - I can see the dimples now. Love your latest photo - positively elegant.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      You couldn't possibly date yourself with me, wavegirl, I wouldn't have known this much of Betty White's career if I wasn't already older than dirt.

      Interesting how so many of her fans loved hr even more as Sue Ann on MTM than as Rose on the Golden Girls. Just goes to show what a fine comedic actress she is to be able to play those two such different roles so well.

      Thanks for stopping by and the kind words.

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      BJBenson 7 years ago from USA

      Great hub on Betty. Oh, I am back from the dead!

    • anglnwu profile image

      anglnwu 7 years ago

      I saw her on SNL and had a blast. Never really knew her before that (Sorry, blame it on the fact that i'm a transplant) but her humor was irresistible. Thanks for this fun read!

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      I love it! Next January, she'll be the same age my George would have been next Feb. 13th. Birds of a feather & bright stars throughout long lives. He's been gone 2 years next Sept.

      It is refreshing to remember happy stories with happy endings - or extended living - far into the Golden Years.

      Thanks, drbj - for this very interesting and thorough coverage. I've been a Betty White fan throughout all her decades of good shows. (haha - I was even once told I looked like her - also have dimples).

      Good job!

    • wavegirl22 profile image

      Shari 7 years ago from New York, NY

      drbj - great piece here. I have always loved her and when she hosted SNL I loved her even more. Hate to date myself but my favorite role of her when on the Mary Tyler Moore show, , I loved that show and loved Sue Ann! Big thumbs up on this fun read:)

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Thank you for enjoying the Footnotes, Green Lotus. I like to pop them in when the narrative is lengthy.

      I enjoyed Betty's character on MTM, too, it isn't easy to play sweet with a wicked edge but she did it to perfection.

      Delighted you remember Molly Goldberg. Not many people know how clever and talented both Betty and Gertrude were in those early days of TV. I wanted to remind them.

      Thanks for visiting and your kind comments.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Mike - I remember the early days of Password, too, and watching various stars match wits with their one-word clues for their non-celebrity partners.

      When the MTM Show ended, both Valerie Harper and Cloris Leachman left for their own spin-off series respectively, Rhoda and Phyllis. Georgia Engel is the actress who played Baxter's wife on MTM.

      John Hillerman, formerly of Magnum, co-starred as Betty White's ex-husband on the short-lived The Betty White Show in 1977. Hillerman used a proper Briish accent in the Magnum show but was a native of Texas. He confessed he learned the accent from listening to Laurence Olivier, the British actor.

      Betty White has, as you so aptly put it, found her place in the sun and shines on the rest of us as an eminent role model we can all hope to emulate. She is the lodestar of my earlier hub: "Getting Older Ain't a Problem. You Just Have to Live Long Enough."

      Thanks Mike for helping me to reminisce.

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      Hillary 7 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      I really enjoyed this drbj especially the little footnote extra's! What a lucky lady she is to have had such a rich career. I think my favorite of Betty's characters was Sue Ann Nivens. Betty played wicked with a smile so brilliantly. Thanks also for a real surprise, popping in Molly Goldberg! Wow my grandmother loved to watch that show on her 5"X 5" TV. I can hear Molly calling to her neighbor now.."You-hoo, Mrs. Bloom!"

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      That was a clever move, Sheila. Blondes do have more fun so who cares what others say. They are just jealous.

      Betty White became a blonde and she is a very clever lady.

    • Mike Lickteig profile image

      Mike Lickteig 7 years ago from Lawrence KS USA

      My first memories of Betty White were from her game show days. I remember sitting in the living room one summer stuffing envelopes (a job our mother secured for us) and noting that Betty White, Elizabeth Montgomery and Carol Burnett were all very good at Password. It was almost like a Challenge of the Network Stars when two of the three were on the show at the same time.

      I wasn't as much a fan of White's role in Golden Girls as I was of the job she did as Sue Ann Nivens on the Mary Tyler Moore show. I always felt she played off Ed Asner so very well, bringing out the shy and tongue-tied aspect of Lou Grant. I found it a shame that she was rushed into the Betty White Show at the end of the MTM run (seems like all the characters on MTM were given their own show). I don't remember it well, but didn't that show have the guy who played Higgins from Magnum P.I. on it? Wasn't the woman who played Ted Baxter's girl friend (can't summon her name right now) on it, also? I vaguely remember watching the show and thinking they all did the best they could with the material they were given.

      It is nice that Betty White can still find a place in the sun. Maybe there's hope for a second (or third or fourth) act for the rest of us as we get older, as well.

      Mike

    • sheila b. profile image

      sheila b. 7 years ago

      When I became a blond and discovered I was now seen as a 'dumb blond', I used Betty White as my role model.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, hello. Yup, research is my middle name. I love finding out new bits of information to make hubs more fascinating and reader-friendly, just as you do.

      Of course you will look like that at 88 - even better. Promise!

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

      Wow, drbj, you definitely done some research there. Thank you for all these information. I hope I will look like that at her age. She is great.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      I'm not surprised that Betty has so many fans. Her goodness shines through even when she plays less than enviable characters. Did you see her in "Bringing Down the House"?

      Thank you for the visit and the "fantastic."

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, Darlene, how fortunate you are to know and to have worked with Betty. She is a true activist and the honors and awards she has received for her charitable work with animals would fill an entire hub all by themselves.

      Thanks for the lovely comments.

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      "Amazing and inspirational," bp?

      Exactly the words I would use, to describe Betty, too. Thank you for stopping by.

    • drbj profile image
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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, suziecat - thank you for the visit and for appreciating this hub. It has been my pleasure to have researched more about this wonderful role model.

      You are most welcome.

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      UPDATE for READERS:

      Facebook subscribers have launched a second viral marketing campaign to have Betty White named as host for the Emmy Awards TV show. Wouldn't that be a hoot!

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

      I have always loved Betty White and you did a remarkable job on writing her life story. Fantastic hub.

    • Darlene Sabella profile image

      Darlene Sabella 7 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

      I personally know Betty White, and she is the sweetest person I have had the pleasure of meeting. We were involved in a project for children and their pets. She is so real you would never guess she was a star. She lived in the same town I lived in and wanted to help, Karma; she has given so much that this is why she is blessed! Thumbs up, great hub

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      breakfastpop 7 years ago

      This is a terrific tribute to Betty White who is truly amazing and inspirational.

    • suziecat7 profile image

      suziecat7 7 years ago from Asheville, NC

      She is quite wonderful, isn't she? Thanks for this Hub.