It’s a tough pill to swallow. I will be turning 40 next year! Ugh! Where has the time gone? Perhaps if I were a wealthy man, I would be in the midst of a mid-life crisis consisting of taking up a dangerous hobby like sky diving or cow tipping, or buying an expensive sports car. But alas, I am merely a working class man with bills to pay and kids to feed. So I figure I will do something much less expensive and just write a quick memoir of my early life.
Being that I was born in 1975, I can’t really consider myself a ’70’s kid since I don’t have many memories of the ’70’s at all. Luckily my mother took up photography as a hobby when I was but a wee lad, and I have many photographs at my disposal to show just what I was up to at the time. There are pictures of me in the summer time walking around wearing nothing but a diaper on my butt and a smile on my face. And there are the pictures of me, obviously dressed by my mother, wearing a hideously colored wide-collared shirt and yellow bell bottom corduroy pants with blue socks. *Shudder* Like I said, my mother dressed me that day.
Rather, I consider myself lucky to have been an ’80’s kid. Now, maybe I am a bit biased, but I still to this day consider the ’80’s to be the greatest decade ever. Great music, great movies, great T.V. shows, great Saturday morning cartoons and great toys. Life was so much simpler then. The world wasn’t in a state of complete distraction as it is now. There were no iPhones. There were no Androids. There were no PS4’s or Xbox 360’s. No, in fact, my idea of a handheld device was my Texas Instruments Speak -N- Spell. I had an Atari, but the only time I ever played it is if it were raining outside or after the streetlights came on (the universal sign for “Get your butt home NOW!”).
Yes, it was a much simpler time. I had this thing called an “imagination” and I wasn’t afraid to use it. A perfectly shaped stick could become a sword used to slay dragons, or it could become a gun used to fight off an Alien invasion. A cone from one of the many Magnolia trees in my neighborhood became hand grenades. And what was better than a friendly game of wiffle ball or kick ball with the kids in the neighborhood?
And then there was my bike. Oh how I loved that thing! It was a blue Ross BMX bike. My brother had a matching one in gray. I can’t even begin to imagine how many miles I put on that thing. It lasted a long time because I took care of it. I did all the maintenance to it myself, courtesy of lessons learned from my dad. It was my noble steed for many, many years.
Ok, so here is a run down of some of my favorite things from the ’80’s:
The Goonies, E.T. the Extra Terrestrial, Cheers, Dragon’s Lair (the arcade game and the cartoon), Pee Wee’s Playhouse, Galaxy High School, The Smurfs, Dungeons and Dragons (the cartoon), MTV actually playing music videos, After School Specials, Knight Rider, Airwolf, The Greatest American Hero, Teen Wolf, Alf, Back to the Future, The Breakfast Club, The Ghostbusters, The Never Ending Story, The Dark Crystal, Punky Brewster, Charles in Charge, Different Strokes, Silver Spoons, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (the toys and the cartoon), G.I. Joe (the toys and the cartoon), The Transformers (the toys and the cartoon), Cyndi Lauper, all of the one hit wonders from the ’80’s (there are too many to list here), Prince and the Revolution’s Purple Rain album, Michael Jackson’s Thriller, Rubik’s Cubes, Tonka trucks, Members Only jackets, feathered hair, Greg LeMond becoming the first American to with the Tour de France. And the list goes on and on and on…
Even though the ’80’s was 3 decades ago, it still feels like yesterday to me.