Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Four Out of Five Dentists Recommend Trident

As a kid growing up in the 1980s, this popular Trident Sugarless Gum slogan was often joked about ... "Four out of five dentists recommend Trident to their patients who chew gum." It's one of those phrases you never forget. Sort of like, "Oh what a feeling, Toyota!"

Ironically, in my adult life I worked for an advertising agency and Trident (Cadbury) was our client. Funny, right?

Too young to remember this terrifically memorable campaign? Please watch this commercial with Peggy Fleming from 1981.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Skidz Pants | 80s Baggy Pants

Skidz were popular baggy pants back in the '80s.

Skidz (pronounced Skids) were baggy, pajama like comfy cotton pants that were almost like the pants version of Jams (shorts). Often cuffed or folded at the bottom, Skidz were extremely popular with white Keds or slip-on style sneakers. They came in a variety of prints and pasterns and featured a yellow and black logo showing a vehicle skidding. These soft, baggy pants were available at most malls all over America.

Skidz pants were loved by most high school kids throughout the late 1980s and faded out by about 1990.  

Skidz pants went well with big hair and
were loved by '80s guidos or mall girls.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Rainbow Belts from the '70s and '80s

Remember Rainbow Belts?

When I was a kid growing up in the late 1970s and early 1980s, everyone loved rainbow belts. They were just the coolest. Mork from Mork & Mindy wore rainbow suspenders and we girls wore colorful rainbow belts with metal buckles and sometimes gold brass buckles. 

Rainbow Smurf Belt

Fancy girls had rainbow belts with Smurf buckles or other characters on them. I can't recall if I was that lucky and stylish. 

Do you remember rainbow belts? Did you have one back in the day?

Friday, November 30, 2012

Sears Holiday Wish Book Catalog 1980s

Sears Wish Book 1980s Holiday Catalog
I found many holiday books to be extremely enjoyable back in the 1980s. However, at a young age, this was by far my most favorite reading material for several Christmas seasons. Filled with awesome Barbies, doll houses, even adorable pajamas, the Sears Wish Book catalog was every kid's favorite. 

How about you? Were you a fan of the Sears catalog? 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

What's Happening!! Roger, Rerun & Dwayne!

What's Happening!! 

Growing up in the early 1980s, I loved the show What's Happening!! Loosely based on Cooley High, a movie focused around an urban Chicago high school in 1975, What's Happening!! was a situation comedy centered around three  high school friends. Roger (Ernest Lee Thomas), Rerun (Fred Berry) and Dwayne (Heywood Nelson) kept audiences entertained with their quick wit and fun personalities.

The guys often hung out at a local luncheonette, Rob's Place, where they hassled chubby, hilarious waitress, Shirley (Shirley Hemphill). Shirley didn't take any nonsense from the boys while she served up burgers, fries and shakes. Shirley took more of the spotlight later on in the series when she moved in to Roger's home to help keep an eye on Dee.   

The ABC show aired between August 1976 to April 1979, though I was watching reruns (no pun intended). I loved the show What's Happening!! did you?


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Sony Sports Walkman - Best 80s Radio Ever

I loved my SONY Sports WALKMAN 

There were two things I loved the most in high school. Music from bands like The Smiths and Depeche Mode and my Sony Sports Walkman

The Sony Sports Walkman was splash proof, so it was perfect for the beach and pool. It was yellow, which made it stand out and appear fashionable. It as somewhat of a fashion accessory to be honest. There was a heftier price tag attached to it, so it let others know you weren't skimping on your technology. 

I loved the way the side opened and closed. It was unlike the usual portable music players I had ever owned before. I also remember slapping a Smiths sticker on my Sony Sports Walkman alerting others of my impeccable taste in music.

Did you have one? If so, did you love it?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Sea Breeze - Beautiful Skin Can Be A Breeze

Beautiful skin can be a breeze with Sea Breeze!

Back in the 1980s, I swore by Sea Breeze face cleanser. I loved the cool, crisp, clean sensation I got from using Sea Breeze. I'd apply a cotton ball with Sea Breeze to my face and neck after my shower in the morning and before bedtime in the evening. It felt magical. My face would tingle and smell so clean. 

Thoughts of my youth rush back to me every time I get my eyebrows waxed at the salon. Why? Because they clean my brows with Sea Breeze. Originally developed in 1906 as an antiseptic for minor cuts and scratches, the brand was killed around 2003, then came back in 2010.

Remember the classic commercials and "Beautiful skin can be a breeze with Sea Breeze" jingle from the 1980s? Check it out here:

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Whoopee Cushion Fun

Whoopee Cushion Fun
There was a time in my childhood that I became obsessed with these practical joke items. You know, like hand buzzers, soap that makes your hands dirty, fake plastic poop, and of course the infamous Whoopee Cushion or Woopie Cushion. There was something about these vintage treats that really caught my eye. I liked their simple packaging. These immature gag items were also perfectly priced for a kid on an allowance. 

I'd bring a different prank item to school with me to share with the other kids. Whether it was a fake ice cube with a plastic fly in it or itching powder that didn't really make me itch for some reason, I just had to have it. Though all of the gag trinkets were fun, the Whoopee Cushion held a special place in my heart. Who could 
resist the sound of toots? 

It was such a riot to place this ridiculous rubbery balloon-like thing on someone's chair at school and have them plop down on it. Everyone always knew it was there. It was never an actual surprise or prank. Yet it always made us laugh. My husband dressed up in a pre-fab Whoopee Cushion costume one Halloween. Sorry I'm not allowed to share that photo here.  

Here's one I found on the Internet for you -- NOT MY HUSBAND!

Woopie Cushion Costume

Monday, October 8, 2012

Girl Talk Book - 1980s

I loved this book, Girl Talk, in the early 1980s.

When I was a preteen, I adored a book written by Molly Douglas called Girl Talk. Published by Weekly Reader in 1981, Girl Talk was, "A Guide to Beauty, Fashion and Health" and included important hygiene, fashion and beauty tips, drawings and information for young girls.

I especially enjoyed the black and white drawings -- the book became my girl bible and I brought it to sleepovers and camp to share the info I learned with other girls my age. 

Does anyone remember this gem? Someone was selling it on Etsy for $3.50. Click the link to view details about Girl Talk.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Coleco Tabletop Pac-man Game

In 1982, this Pac-man game was the coolest toy around ... It was like a mini arcade version of Pac-man. Created by Coleco, this small tabletop game was awesome. Although I never had one, I sure wanted one. I wasn't super spoiled and had Atari so that had to suffice. 

Did anyone out there own this? I've thought about getting it on eBay, but nothing beats the full-sized arcade Pac-man.

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Meanest Teacher Ever ...

Who was your meanest teacher ever? 

We've all experienced it at some point in our lives ... The meanest teacher ever. Think back, maybe you'll recall a grammar school teacher who made every day a living hell. Maybe it was a high school teacher that had it out for you  ... each day more torturous than the last. 

For me, it was third grade. We'll call her Mrs. Jones. She was a total hideously scary beast. Please forgive me for being 100% candid here, but she really was one sick, ugly, old broad. Lucky for me, my folks yanked me out of that hellish classroom and transferred me to private school before Thanksgiving. But the pain I endured for the first few weeks of third grade, truly were unbearable.

Every once in a while, I forget about it... Then something happens and the feelings of insecurity and worthlessness come back. And to think, this was just a teacher. It makes me cringe thinking about kids who may have lived with parents who made them feel this way. I was lucky, I only had like two rough months of adult vs. child bullying.

Making my classmates clap if I finally got a math problem correct. Making me position my desk next to her desk so that I was physically facing the class for weeks and weeks. Each day she'd tease me, taunting that if I was good, maybe I'd be able to sit back with the rest of the class. That never happened. I don't know what prompted such treatment. Was I was caught whispering or passing a note to another student? I was an upbeat, fun-loving kid. She broke me. She broke my spirit. She made me feel stupid. 

As the child of two teachers, I was taught to always be mindful of the other students and treat teachers with respect. I didn't think to say anything back or tell another teacher. How could I win against the ruler of the class?

It wasn't until my mother was forced to sit alongside Mrs. Jones isolated from the other parents, facing them throughout an entire Parent-Teacher night, that she realized what was going on. It was then that she understood that my morning stomach aches were more mental than physical. It was at that moment, she knew why on Sunday nights I cried in bed and dreaded waking up on Monday mornings. I would have welcomed a natural disaster every day over having to drag ass into that classroom awaiting the doom of Mrs. Jones.

Years later, somehow, people found out that Mrs. Jones had a drinking problem. I'm not sure how they discovered this scandalous bit of info ... Perhaps Mrs. Jones  was suspended? I'm not quite certain, but one thing was confirmed... She was a  mean, horrible, angry drunk who took her evils out on small children.

A former classmate of mine found me on Facebook and we talked about how things went in the early fall of 1980. I had no idea there were others who were shamed and humiliated at  Mrs. Jones' expense. Though this doesn't make me feel better, at least I can mentally accept the fact that it wasn't just me. It makes me feel better knowing there were others. 

Your turn ... Please share your story of the meanest teacher you've ever had and thanks for reading.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Milk, it does a body good!

Anyone remember the "Milk, it does a body good" commercials from the late 1980s? There were so many of them -- developed by McCann-Erickson Worldwide -- and each one featured a different kid, or several kids against a gray backdrop...

The theme was basically that drinking milk will make you hot or beautiful once you grow up. I never drank milk growing up, just didn't like the taste. I'm all grown up now, and well, I'm far from hot. My cousin, on the other hand, she drank milk by the gallon. She's now a successful lawyer, very hot and very wealthy. Hmm... Truth.

Here's one I found ... PS In retrospect, I realize many of the kids cast in these commercials have Long Island accents.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Stop, Drop, And Roll | Vintage Fire Safety

As a kid, we were taught to "Stop, Drop And Roll" in the event of a fire. Get down, watch out for hot door knobs and run to a neighbors to call 911. These were our very first lessons safety. It was drilled into our heads, rightfully so, of course. Does anyone remember this vintage fire safety video? 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Olympic Summer Games for the Apple II

Summer Games for Apple II
Like most kids in the 1980s, I loved video games. I started out with Atari, then moved on to computer games as I got a bit older. I remember some of my very early games came on big old black floppy disks. My dad, a teacher, would bring copies home his school. I would play the games every afternoon for hours and hours.

I found some of my old favorite Apple II games on YouTube. It's so crazy, the music and sound effects bring me right back to our basement computer area where I could hide and play games for hours while my mother thought I was studying on our computer. We obviously didn't have the Internet back then. Around 1985, I was completely addicted to the Summer Games - I especially loved the gymnastics, diving and pole vaulting. Watch a demo of the game here:

My other favorite game for the Apple II was Lemonade Stand. Lemonade Stand was basically a game that utilized simple math skills and strategy to earn money while advertising and dealing with the ups and downs of the market - in this case, rainy weather. 

Lemonade Stand for Apple II
Watch the demo of Lemonade Stand for Apple II. I swear, the sounds will bring you right back.

Monday, July 30, 2012

1980s Wendy's Salad Bar & Tabletops

Wendy's Garden Spot or salad bar was big in the 1980s

Wendy's - Three Fun 1980s Vintage Memories 

Growing up, my parents were convinced that Wendy's was the healthier fast food choice. Mom took us there a few times a month, and trust me, we never complained. Her rule was that we not order fries, but opt for the broccoli and cheese baked potato. She also encouraged us to order the salad bar.

You'd think I'd be a health nut today. Too bad something went wrong there... ;-) Anyway, remember these three things about Wendy's fast food restaurants from back in the day? Note, I purposely left out, "Where's The Beef?" since it's an obvious '80s memory.

1. Wendy's Garden Spot 
Known as Wendy's Garden Spot, the salad bar was where it was at if you were watching your figure. They even had commercials highlighting just the salad bar and how you could enjoy under 300 calories and look fabulous in a swim suit. Here are two vintage Wendy's Garden Spot commercials to refresh your memory.

2. Cool vintage or retro ads on Wendy's Tables
Remember the cool Wendy's tabletops? They featured old time ads and it gave you something to read and enjoy while your folks were waiting on line, placing your dinner order. 

Wendy's old time tables - loved the cool,  retro, vintage ads.

3. Breakfast!
In 1985, Wendy's made a huge announcement. They'd serve breakfast. And they did! However this actually lasted only for about 9 months. According to a 1986 LA Times article, the reason Wendy's originally failed at breakfast, was because they offered made-to-order omelets. Something impossible to keep up with as a fast food joint. I only recall French toast and egg platters - similar to McDonald's. Today select Wendy's restaurants are serving breakfast to keep up with the .

Remember this 1985 Wendy's breakfast commercial? 

Monday, July 23, 2012

McGruff The Crime Dog - Take A Bite Out Of Crime

McGruff the Crime Dog celebrated
25 years in 2005

Don't ask me why, but growing, up PSAs and TV commercials were a huge part of my world. Perhaps that's how I ended up in the advertising/public relations industry. In prior posts, we've talked about NBC's One To Grow On campaign, Reading is Fundamental or RIF, and the famous, "I learned it by watching you, Dad" anti-drug PSAs ... Somehow, I've managed to overlook McGruff, the Crime Dog.

McGruff was a cartoon dog version of a "plain clothes" police man, cop or private investigator. Born in 1980, McGruff, the Crime Dog was developed as a way to reach children and provide tips to keep kids safe. Developed by the Ad Council for National Crime Prevention Council, raspy-voiced McGruff (originally voiced by the "Take A Bite Out of Crime" moto creator, Jack Keil) warned us kids about everything from the threat of kidnapping, to drugs ("Users are Losers"), to peer pressure.

McGruff was awesome. In 2005, a new ad campaign was created to celebrate his 25th birthday. His messages have slightly changed to suit today's issues ... These days, he advises kids about the dangers of cyber bullying and offers suggestions on how to handle mean girls. Who remembers McGruff, the Crime Dog? Watch these old TV commercials. Hopefully it will spark a memory or two.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

David Hasselhoff Cumberland Farms Ads

Don't "Hassle The Hoff" at Cumberland Farms

What kid in the '80s didn't love Knight Rider? What kid in the '90s didn't love Baywatch? David Hasselhoff, also known as "The Hoff", has become a household name among three generations of pop culture-lovin' youth. 

Knight Rider rocked!
This morning NPR announced that Cumberland Farms latest ad campaign has seriously "taken off" thanks in part to images of David Hasselhoff urging customers to enjoy a refreshing iced coffee. Cutouts positioned in about 570 stores throughout New England, California and Florida are such a hit with customers, they're stealing them. Who wouldn't want a life-size cutout of The Hoff in a tank top, sipping a delicious-looking iced coffee in their living room? I know I sure would love it. 

In California alone, 550 stores have seen the David Hasselhoff cutouts vanish from Cumberland Farms convenience stores. Is the company pissed? Hell no! "We want everyone to enjoy the Hoff," said their strategic marketing specialist, Kate Ngo. How cool is this? I love it. 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

1970s Inchworm Riding Toy Then & Now

Romper Room Inchworm from the 1970s

Remember this riding toy from back in the 1970s and/or 1980s? If you were too small for a Big Wheel, you were most likely chuggin' along on this green slow-moving happy crawler. With yellow wheels, yellow matching seat and cute cap -- every kid on my suburban block couldn't resist him. "You could ride up and down, and up and down. Inchworm, I love you!" It was so sweet. The commercial sounds a bit dirty now looking back as an adult. Oh well...

Check out the Inchworm Riding Toy available at Target. The price is up about $40 and Radio Flyer red has replaced the yellow. I think I prefer the original Romper Room version as opposed to this modernized Radio Flyer model.

Today's version of the Inchworm by Radio Flyer $53

Thursday, July 5, 2012

BJ and the Bear | Greg Evigan TV Show

Between 1979 and August 1981, youngsters everywhere enjoyed a somewhat unique TV show called BJ and the Bear. The 60 minute NBC comedy focused around a handsome young trucker, BJ  (Greg Evigan) and his travel buddy, a chimpanzee named Bear.

The two cruised around the highways in a big red and white rig while BJ's nemesis, Sheriff Lobo (Claude Akins) relentlessly tried to arrest BJ. The show was very similar to Dukes of Hazzard.with Rosco P. Coltrane chasing after Bo and Luke Duke.

Here's a clip of BJ and The Bear.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Throwback Photo '80s Hair

Dig my '80s hair!

Admit it, at one point in your life you had a wick-wick-wack hairstyle.

To be honest, I would consider revisiting this look. Maybe mix things up by adding some blue Manic Panic (do they even make that anymore?) to it. Um, okay maybe not. I'm not sure if my husband would appreciate looking at my shaved head every morning.

This photo was taken in November of 1988. I was turning 16 that month. I'd really LOVE to see photos of you and your wildest 'do. Please visit our Facebook page and post one. C'mawn, sharing is caring.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Fisher-Price Happy Apple Baby Toy

Happy Apple by Fisher-Price

The Fisher-Price Happy Apple made its debut the same year that I did, 1972. It was a simplistic baby toy that made a beautiful chime sound when tipped. Between the sweet sound and that warm, smiling happy face, Happy Apple kept '70s and '80s babies mesmerized for hours. 

Anyone remember this toy?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Last Starfighter | Movie from 1984

I loved The Last Starfigher in 1984

When I was a kid, I'd refer to movies like Raiders of the Lost Ark and TRON as "boy movies."  I typically skipped these films. I believed they were of no use to me. To this day, I have no interest in films like The Avengers or Men In Black

One "boy  movie" I did enjoy however, was The Last Starfighter. This classic scifi film hit theaters in 1984 and focused around a teen ... Hang on, check it. I love how movie "teens" in the '80s looked so much older than today's movie"teens" -- what's up with that? Like Kevin Bacon was 26 when he played a senior in Footloose that same year!

Anyway, The Last Starfighter focused on a Alex Rogan (Lance Guest), a teen  living in a trailer park. He's like the Starfighter video gaming champion -- spending hours defending The Frontier. He's recruited by an alien to bring his video gaming skills into another dimension sorta thing. You know when real life crosses over into video game world. I forget the rest, but it was a pretty cool movie, for a "boy movie."

I wonder if any of you remember it? Of course I probably enjoyed it because back in 1984 I was all about Atari and Lance Guest was rather easy on the eyes--even for a 12-year-old girl.

Here's The Last Starfighter theatrical trailer to spark your memory.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

May 25, 1979, When Etan Patz Went Missing...

New York kids and parents will always
remember this beautiful face.

During the week of May 25th, 1979, New York area moms held their children closer. I was only 6, but I clearly remember the day Etan Patz vanished without a trace. My own mother, a NYC school teacher at that time, was very taken by the missing little boy. It affected her. She knew children who walked to the bus stop or walked to and from her school. 

In 1979, Etan and I were the same age. He was born a mere month before me. I will never forget the haunting image of this beautiful child with adorable silky hair styled in a typical '70s "bowl cut." I wondered where he could have gone. I wondered why he didn't run. I wondered who could have taken him. I thought about Etan often. 

We all felt for the Patz family. It could have been any of us. As a kid, growing up in the late '70s and early '80s, it seemed like an innocent time. We would bike to the corner candy stores. We played in our local school yards. We were safe. Etan wasn't. 

Every morning, my little brother and I would begin our day with a bowl of cereal. We were safe in our PJs. Safe in our home. Safe with our parents just a few feet away. Sprinkling sugar over our Rice Krispies, we would stare at images of missing kids our ages. Their faces on milk cartons. Thoughts of where they might be raced through my innocent, young mind. 

According to news stories all over the US, New York City's finest have cracked the case this week. A man has confessed. It doesn't even matter what his name is or where he's from. The point is, someone has finally come forward. I read that the Patz family never moved or changed their phone number in hopes that their son, Etan would try to locate them. 

My heart aches for Etan's parents. 

Are you old enough to remember this heart-wrenching case?

Monday, May 14, 2012

In 1979, I was no Sandra Dee - Olivia Newton-John

I wished I looked more like this in 1979.

Back in the late 1970s until about 1982, I LOVED Olivia Newton-John. I first discovered her as Sandra Dee in Grease. I swear, I thought Olivia was like this beautiful angel with a heavenly voice. I wished I looked like her. Skinny with lovely blonde hair. She was just so pretty. 

Around that time, I was friends with an adorable tanned, blue-eyed, blonde-haired little girl from our neighborhood. Though she was two years younger than me, we would sometimes play together. Her parents spoiled her in a different way than mine did. I remember her room was so pink. We're talking floor to ceiling pretty shades of pink. In her room, we'd sink our toes into the soft mauve carpet of her fit-for-a-princess style bedroom and perform scenes and songs from Grease. We'd play the album over and over, and sing along to every song.

It's weird, but as young as I was back then, I can recall feeling this strange, overwhelming sense of sadness. While singing along, leaping on and off her bed, pretend pillow fighting and reenacting the slumber party scene, it hit me ... My friend looked much more like Sandy, Olivia Newton-John's character, than me. Deep down, I knew that I was like a chubby, mousy brown-haired younger version of Rizzo to this little girl's Sandy. 

The early 1980s seemed like more of an innocent time. Kids didn't seem to grow up as fast as they do today. How did I know to even feel that way back then. How did I know she would be the cheerleader. Not me.  I just did. 

Thanks for listening. 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Really Rosie & Pierre - by Maurice Sendak

"I don't care," said Pierre - a Maurice Sendak classic.
Children's author and illustrator, Maurice Sendak passed away today at 83. Although famous for Where The Wild Things Are, I was probably the only child who didn't like that book. I did, however ADORE the tale of Pierre and Really Rosie

Pierre was a very naughty little boy. I remember thinking that my parents would kick my butt if I was as bad as Pierre who just didn't care. The story revolves around his disrespectful ways and what can happen to children who don't listen to their parents. 

I remember Carole King singing the words to Pierre in a TV special that aired on CBS in 1975 called Really Rosie. Really Rosie was an animated musical based on Maurice Sendak's stories including Chicken Soup with Rice -- another one I enjoyed. I was really small when I saw it and I think the scene where the lion eats Pierre was a bit scary, but the song was so wonderful. 

I especially love Maurice Sendak's kids and characters in Really Rosie because they were New Yawkers, like my family and me, and they sure did have the accents to prove it.

Here's a clip of Pierre...

Chicken Soup with Rice:

Monday, May 7, 2012

Maxell & TDK Tape Cassettes

Tape cassettes from back in the '80s and '90s.

Remember cassette tapes also known as compact cassettes? The popular brands were distributed by TDK and Maxell. It's hard to believe these items are hard to find today. One of my favorite gifts as a child, was a tape recorder. Ask someone under 30 if they know what a tape recorder is today and they most likely will have no idea. 

As a kid, I would use a small tape recorder to record audio while watching my favorite movies in the theater. I particularly recall doing this during The Goonies. I would listen to the tapes while getting ready for school or doing homework. I knew every line. Too bad I didn't record important information such as history or Spanish lessons. I would have aced my classes!

I think my very first tapes were copied versions of Madonna's first two albums and Cyndi Lauper's She's So Unusual back in sixth grade. My dad was a teacher and one of his students had a massive record collection. He told the student how much I loved Madonna and Cyndi Lauper. Soon I had two new tapes and I bet some had a passing grade. I played those tapes continuously until I believe they finally snapped. That was the one thing that was uncool about tapes. They would get stuck or the tape would unwind from the spool. 

As we kids got older, we learned about the romanticism behind the mixed tape. Often a sign of affection, your crush would gather their favorite songs and put together a nice combination of tunes for you on a blank tape. The crush would label the tape and sometimes create artwork, depending on how creative they were.  Even the worst song on the tape was lovely because of the person behind the mixed tape. My husband made me CDs in 2001. There are songs that will always remind me of him.

It seems like so long ago when tapes were popular. Now, you may not even be able to play them and don't get me started on records.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Flying Finnegan Board Game

Flying Finnegan Board Game from 1978
Every once in a while, I'll get a text or Facebook message from my younger brother asking me if I can recall this game we used to play way back in the late 1970s or early 1980s. He never can quite recall the name of it other than the term, "Flying F-something" ... Tonight he texted me asking if I remembered how much we enjoyed playing, "Flying Flannigan." 

Flying Finnegan from Kenner
We both knew this wasn't what this game was really called. And to be honest, I couldn't even remember what the object of this game was. I just knew there was some wacky board game we loved to play with a funny name. I reminded him about my love for Run Yourself Ragged. But felt bad that I couldn't offer him any other memory behind this "Flying" game that was so special to him.

Thankfully, Board Game Geek once again came through for me. And there it was, the complete Flying Finnegan lowdown.That was it! It was called Flying Finnegan -- a 1978 game from Kenner. Classified as a board game, this game was more of a tabletop action game. It was perfect for two players around the age of 6 or 8 - though I think my brother may have been under the suggested age.

You have to view the above YouTube video to really see how the game is played. It's like a cause and effect type situation game. You launch something and then another thing happens which then causes another thing to happen. It always reminded me of those funny contraptions you'd see in a cartoon usually with a brainy scientist would be behind it. Think Data from The Goonies

Anyone remember this?

*Photos take from Board Game Geek.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

When you need it bad, we've got it good! Florida!

Remember the old Florida tourism commercial?

When I started this blog, I was living in New Jersey. Over the years, I got sick of jobs that didn't pay very well, real estate prices that started at $350,000, yearly homeowner taxes in the double digits and living 90 minutes away from a beach. I had been laid off for like the third time in three years and my husband was facing an impending layoff after ten years with his company. We finally realized we needed to make a big change. 

We gave away or sold everything we owned, filled our two Hondas with whatever was left and moved to Florida. In February, we celebrated one year in The Sunshine State and have never been happier. We're closing on our first home in less than a week (fingers crossed) and have wonderful   jobs earning decent salaries. We paid off a nice chunk of New Jersey credit card debt and still managed to save enough dough to put toward a house. 

I know this blog is about the past and fun memories, so in an effort to stick to my subject matter ... Here's where I'm going with this post ... This morning, I was in the kitchen fixing us fried egg whites, coffee and toast, when the lyrics to an old TV commercial filled my head. I couldn't quite figure out if I had made this ad up, or if it was real. 

"When you need it bad, we've got it good, when you need it bad, come to Florida! 'Cuz we've got it good here." I asked hubs about the jingle. He's a few years younger than me ... and had no recollection of it.

Well, I Googled it of course and it's real! It's a tourism TV ad that ran in the late 1980s and early 1980s to promote tourism in Florida. The ad, created by Mike Sloan Advertising agency in Miami, aired heavily in Northern and Midwestern states. With it's catchy jingle and winter stock imagery, the campaign was crazy successful in recruiting visitors to the state. 

I knew I wasn't dreaming. It's funny because although we're not tourists escaping the winter cold, the slogan kinda rings true for us ... We needed a change bad and now we've got it pretty good. 

Check out the Florida commercial. If you grew up in the Northeast or Midwest in the late '70s and '80s, it should look familiar to you.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Robert Hays | The Girl, The Gold Watch & Everything

I loved Robert Hays when I was 8.

Although I was only 8, I had the biggest crush on Robert Hays of Airplane fame. I first spotted him on Angie, a short-lived sitcom from 1979. A year later he starred alongside Mork & Mindy's Pam Dawber, in a made-for-TV-movie called The Girl, The Gold Watch & Everything

If you ask me, this movie was, well, inappropriate for children. I don't even know why my folks allowed me to watch it. I'm sure they had no idea I was in the den glued to the tube. Years later, the details are fuzzy, but the concept was fascinating.

Adorable Kirby (Robert Hays) inherited a fancy gold stopwatch from his wealthy, eccentric uncle. This watch had the ability to stop time. So Kirby  would sort of freeze everyone around him, yet somehow he and his girl (Pam) weren't affected. Zaniness ensued, etc.Cool to a kid!

Does anyone remember this made for TV movie?

Here's the intro and first few minutes. You can view all of The Girl, The Gold Watch & Everything on YouTube. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Units & Multiples 80s Fashions

Multiples or Units by Sandra Garratt were cool
mix and match fashions from the '80s.

The other day, my coworkers and I were at lunch. I told them about my blog and they insisted that I write something about Multiples or Units, the 1980s clothing line founded by Texas fashion designer Sandra Garratt.

I'll be honest, I vaguely really remember this cool mix and match concept of dressing. The photos of the comfy-looking fashions do look familiar, but for some reason, I missed the boat. Sandra's Units came out in 1979 and her Multiples line was launched in 1989.

Multiples for men and women.
Sandra Garratt's story behind Units and Multiples is an awesome rags-to-riches tale. A broke, single mom trying to make a living as a designer, Sandra used her last $38 (from an unemployment check!) to purchase some fabric. She fashioned a few simple cotton skirts, tops and pants, which were to be worn tied and layered. She called them modulars and sold them in a small local boutique. 

Sandra's modulars took off like wildfire and soon 600 shops opened in malls across the U.S. and women of all ages were smitten by the easy-to-wear Units and Multiples styles. Ladies loved Units for their comfort -- some say they loved how five pieces could be mixed, matched and layered to create a week's worth of styles. 

Today, Sandra Garratt is living in LA and still busy creating different looks for women, men and children with MODBOX, SilvrLining and more. 

Did you own Multiples or Units? My coworkers admitted they still have one or two of Sandra's simplistic, timeless pieces. 


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