I knew she had been sick with dementia for a long time, but I was still really sad to find out that Estelle Getty passed away early today.

I’ve been a huge Golden Girls fan since high school, and Sophia was always one of my favorite characters (but how can anyone not love them all?).  She had the best lines on the show. In fact, she MADE that show. I doubt it would have been a success without her one-liners.

After seeing the outpouring of sympathy and shared memories on CNN, YouTube and People, it reinforced how many people loved her.  My favorite comment from a fan: “Her little wicker bag should be in the Smithsonian.”

Here are some of my all-time favorite Sophia quotes:

Dorothy: “Why can’t you sleep on the couch and give Clayton and Doug your room?”
Blanche: “Are you crazy? What will the neighbors think if they see two men in my bedroom?”
Sophia: “They’ll think it’s Tuesday.”

Blanche: “I tried giving up sex.”
Dorothy: “I guess you fell off the wagon.”
Sophia: “And onto a naval base!”

Blanche: “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to relax in a hot, steamy bath with just enough water to cover my perky bosoms.”
Sophia: “You’re gonna lay in an inch of water?”

Dorothy: “Ma, I waited up until two in the morning for you, and you still weren’t home.”
Sophia: “Oh, yeah.  Me and Gertie went over to Wolfie’s to pick up guys.”
Dorothy: “I called Wolfie’s. You weren’t there.”
Sophia: “Guess who got lucky.”
Dorothy: “Oh, God!”

Dorothy: “Ma, where have you been?”
Sophia: “I always believe that when you’re in a hospital, you should go around and cheer the other patients up.”
Dorothy: “Oh, Ma, that’s so nice.”
Sophia: “Yeah, so I went upstairs to Geriatrics and sang ‘Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better.'”

Sophia (after losing her glasses): Dorothy, I’m going to my bedroom.
Dorothy: “Okay.” (She walks from the living room to the kitchen. Sophia heads in the wrong direction and goes outside instead. A horn beeps and tires screech.)
Dorothy (running in again): “Ma?…Ma?!…MA!!”
Sophia (coming through the front door): “Who the hell parked their Buick in my bedroom?!”
Dorothy: “Get in here!”

Dorothy: “Blanche, what exactly makes you think he’s your man?”
Sophia: “Who?”
Blanche: “Maybe the fact that I found him first.”
Sophia: “Who?
Rose: “What about the fact that he dumped you for me?”
Sophia: “Who?”
Dorothy: “Laszlo, Ma.”
Sophia: “Who’s Laszlo?”
Rose: “A Hungarian artist we’ve all been posing nude for.”
Sophia: “In the future, a simple ‘none of your business, Sophia’ will suffice.”

Blanche: “Ooh…I’ve got goosebumps. Mel’ll be here any minute.”
Dorothy: “Honey, why are you so jumpy? You’ve been out with Mel a thousand times.”
Blanche: “I know but now there’s more at stake — everything’s changed. It’s all new and exciting. In many ways I…I feel just the way I felt when I was a virgin.”
Sophia: “You mean the feeling isn’t gonna last long?”
Blanche: “Are you implying I lost my virginity at an early age?”
Sophia: “I’m just saying you’re lucky Jack & Jill Magazine didn’t have a gossip column.”
Dorothy: “Ma!”
Sophia: “Hold it, Pussycat. I’m on a roll.”
Blanche: “I’m sorry, Sophia. But I’m not gonna let your skepticism ruin my entire evening. Mel and I were meant to be together.”
Sophia: “I wish I could say the same for your thighs. God, I’m hot tonight!”
Blanche: “I’m not gonna stand for this.”
Sophia: “Take it, Dorothy.”
Dorothy: “But I’ll bet you’ll lie down for it.”
Sophia: “Well, that was just plain rude.”
Blanche: “Some people just don’t know when to quit.”

Sophia: “You know why I call you Pussycat, Pussycat?”
Dorothy: “Why, Ma?  Because you only gave me yarn for Christmas?  Because you fed me once and I hung around?  Because you used to put me out at night?”
Sophia: “Because I love pussycats, and I love you.”  (She kisses Dorothy on the head.  Dorothy is surprised and smiles.  The audience awwwws.)  “And you were the only one who could catch mice.”

Here’s a video of arguably the funniest episode of all time, the episode when Dorothy’s friend Jean, who is gay, visits the girls.  Watch the whole four-minute clip if you have time — it’s hilarious! — but if not, watch Sophia’s reaction to the statement Dorothy makes at 1:14.

This episode eventually leads to my favorite Sophia quote of all time.  The next day, they can’t figure out where Jean slept, since she didn’t sleep in her bedroom.

Dorothy: “Ma, did Jean sleep with you?”
Sophia: “Dorothy, there’s a lot of things I want to do before I die.  That’s not one of them.”

RIP, Estelle.  Thanks for the laughs.

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