Here’s a candid snapshot of the mind behind the theory of relativity!
This photograph was taken by Harry Burnett in Los Angeles, California in 1931, the time when the great German physicist taught at Caltech for two months. Apparently, Einsten saw this puppet in a performance by the Yale Puppeteers at the Teatro Torito on Olvera Street and was amused by it. The story of this meeting of sorts, as recalled in Retronaut:
He reached into his jacket’s breast pocket, pulled out a letter and crumpled it up. Speaking in German, he said, “The puppet wasn’t fat enough!” He laughed and stuffed the crumpled letter up under the smock to give the puppet a fatter belly. This is a wonderful photograph that Harry treasured. Harry Burnett also kept the letter in a frame and loved to retell the story and at the end give his pixish laugh.
Like these random vintage and/or pop culture photos? Check out other stories from our Overly Descriptive Title series in the Lomography magazine!