The ‘Wacky’ Birth of the Albert Einstein Tongue Meme

The tongue iconography is a representation of power which turned into a caricature. We’d call it the onset of the Albert Einstein era, who not only blessed the physicians with his theory of relativity (E=mc2 anyone?) but also with his nonchalant irritation with the paparazzi. Boomer Einstein could run so Meghan Thee Stallion could walk.

On the night of his 72nd birthday (14 March 1951), Albert Einstein was leaving the paparazzi swarmed party at Princeton University. Sitting at the car’s backseat and upon seeing them, he turned around and stuck his (spiteful?) tongue out. (Un)fortunately, the moment was captured by UPI’s Arthur Sasse only. The photo was published on the International News Photos Network.

Einstein requested UPI for nine more prints, to use as greeting cards. One of the autographed prints; inscribed ‘A. Einstein. .51’, remained with one of the reporters. Soon thereafter, it was sold for $72,300. In 2017, it was sold for $125,000 anonymously by Nate D. Sanders auction house.