The Week in Women: in-flight babies, a record-breaking grandma, and the activist history of Mother’s Day

Ida Keeling at the 122nd Penn Relays (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

Moms are great. Everybody loves moms. So in honor of Mother’s Day, we’ve curated a very mom-centric selection of recent headlines. Let’s take a look back, shall we?

To help ease the worries of moms who brave air travel with infants, JetBlue offered a 25 percent discount to passengers on a flight from New York to California every time a baby cried during the trip. Just four crying incidents meant every passenger received a free flight, which presumably made them less inclined to shoot eyeball daggers at the mothers of wailing infants. The stunt was captured for a promotional ad (of course), but it’s still a nice gesture. Baby passengers can’t help crying, after all. The dude who decides to open his funky-smelling take-out mid-flight, on the other hand…

A 100-year-old, great-great grandmother broke a world record at the 122nd Penn Relays at Franklin Field in West Philadelphia. While competing in the 80-years and older division, Ida Keeling crossed the finish line of the 100-yard dash in just over one minute and 17 seconds. She began running when she was 67-years-old, finding solace in the sport after her sons were murdered. At the race, Keeling told reporters that the gym is one of her “main places” because “exercise is one of the mainest [sic] medications you could ever have.” She also celebrated her victory by doing a string of push-ups like it was no big deal. Geez, we can barely climb a flight of stairs without getting winded.

The Compassion Collective, which is made up of a group of renowned authors like Cheryl Strayed and Elizabeth Gilbert, has vowed to “take back Mother’s Day” with a campaign to help refugees and the homeless. The group is raising funds and sharing conversations with refugee children, who were interviewed at the Greek border earlier this month. The Compassion Collective website reminds visitors that Mother’s Day was launched by the abolitionist and poet Julia Ward Howe, who called on women to take up activist causes—or as author Brené Brown put it, to engage in “some good, old-fashion momma ass-kicking.”

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