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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Writing Prompt - Getting Nostalgic About The 80's

By Sophia Kercher

Do you remember a time when boom boxes were awesome, cellphones didn't plague the ears of society, and being a stalker didn't involve Facebook? We do and it was called the 80's! The decade that conjures up tales of PacMan, shoulder pads, and Michael Jackson jackets. Did you wear a terrible poofy gown to prom? Did you lust after Phoebe Cates in Fast Times at Ridgemont High? Was "tubular," "gnarly," or "gag me with a spoon" part of your vocab? Or maybe you fell for Michael J. Fox and his smooth skateboarding skills in Back To The Future? Get nostalgic with us at our upcoming event this Sunday night!

And keep your pen moving with our exciting line-up of fall classes:

So You Want To Be A Writer? (Wed. p.m.'s, Sat a.m's, in Sept. and Oct., Online in Oct.)
Finishing School (Wed. p.m.'s, Sat a.m's in Sept. and Oct.)
Get Your Webisode On (Sun. p.m.'s in Oct.)
Short and Sweet 4 Wk (Tues. p.m.'s in Oct.)
From Snoozeville to Sizzletown: Crafting a Page Turner (10/20)

Writing Prompt:
Make two lists. For the first list, write down ten of your favorite things from the 80's including fashion trends, music, and movies. Consider items that you wore (remember those rad acid jeans?), photographs of your crazy Aunt Sue's hot pink sweater dress, or your mom's boxy work blazers.  Don't forget to include your favorite Madonna song and Star Wars movie! Pick one of the items from your list and add a sensory detail to it (smell, taste, sound, touch). Then write a story, poem, or scene about it, including the sensory detail. Write for 10 minutes, then post your write in the comments of this blog!

For example
: In high school I watched Sixteen Candles on loop with my best friend Merril. We were convinced that the movie's Jake Ryan was the perfect man. We shouted, "We love you Jake!" at the television whenever he walked into a scene. To this day, I compare all of my boyfriends with the 80's dreamboat (sigh!). What memories of 80's pop culture or style make you smile?

Comment on this blog! Write about your favorite thing from the 80's (fashion items, movies, music, etc.). Post your 10 minute write in the comments, and you could win a free class!


Emma Brownell said...

When I was 5 we moved from London, England to Harvard, Massachusetts. It was thrilling because now I’d have an endless supply of Cheerios.

We moved into a big farmhouse an hour from Boston – bordered by apple orchards and fields – and our neighbors, the Nesbettas.

My mother wasn’t a hippie, but she was verging on crunchy – we only ate brown bread, we never got Hawaiian punch in our brown paper lunch bags, and we could only eat Captain Crunch once a year on our birthdays. (She kept the same box in the back of the pantry – doling out a bowl for the birthday girl/boy on her/his one day of the year.)

We also didn’t have TV – we had a TV – but it was permanently set to Channel 2 – PBS – the dial had been surgically removed – and only my parents had access to it – so the 4 kids were restricted to a diet of public television.

But we had our neighbors. Lucy Nesbetta – the matriarch – was worth millions of dollars – earned by her mother, the creator of Avon. Lucy used the money to buy the house and lot next to us, on which she built a second house and kept a barn full of pigs, horses and sheep. Lucy was a farmer of sorts – but she was not a health food buff. She, her husband and their 2 daughters had endless access to all the treats we did not – Italian (pre-sliced) bread, goldfish, Doritos, twix candy bars, Kudos bars, microwave popcorn, popsicles and more.

Going to their house, right across the street – was entering a parallel universe. I used to come home with stone wheat crackers in my pockets – to tide me over until the next visit.

Along with junk food, Lucy embraced non PBS-programming. She and her husband led a life of debauch – staying up late with huge bowls of Doritos and spiked Hawaiian Punch – finishing off their late night snack with Twix bars – all while watching the movies my mother forbade – worst offender of all, Footloose. Lucy had some boundaries – and we children were strictly forbidden from watching the movies she and George rented. But she left Footloose in the basement – along with the pile of kid friendly movies destined to go back to the video store. The basement was where the TV was, along with 2 industrial size freezers that held endless supplies of popsicles and ice cream sandwiches. Hannah found the video, while getting herself an ice cream sandwich. I wouldn’t touch it, but my sister was fearless. And so we began our little party of Footloose watching. Crouched around the TV, the volume low, an ice cream bar each.

Taboose said...

My strongest memory from the 80's was that I was a sucker for heavy metal. I loved loud distorted music, guitar solos and guys with unruly long hair and leather jackets.

I only had a jean jacket, so leather was the next step up. It was my turn to drive so I could choose where my friends and I were going to go. I picked up my two other metal head girlfriends, Stacey Brittingham - a freckly faced poofy, feathered haired redhead and Rikki Nolan, a big-haired brunette who was so dumb she was hilarious. We had all meticulously fixed our hair with curling irons, wore our tightest jeans, and liquid eyeliner.

I carefully selected the cassette tapes for the evening - Def Leppard, Ozzy Osbourne and Metallica. We were headed to what was known as 'Motorhead'. That's what they called the East side of Southwyck Mall. What happened there is on Friday and Saturday nights after the mall had closed, metalheads would descend on the parking lot in their cars and drive back and forth at the front entrance of the mall. You'd do one pass by, get to the end and then turn around and go back the other way - over and over. There would probably be around 30 other cars doing the same thing. Blasting metal, showing off stereo systems, checking each other out, talking about heavy metal and where we could possibly get some beer.

"Oooo that guy is HOT driving the matte black 70's Mustang."

"Check out the blonde guy in the back seat - He looks like Vince Neil!"

"The guy in the Chevy is blasting OLD Metallica! He looked at us!"

"Those girls are bitches! They probably don't know shit about metal - they're probably listening to REO Speedwagon!"

I wonder how much gas we used driving back and forth for so long. At the time, no one was worried about it. We were more concerned with bumming cigarettes off hot guys to have
an excuse to talk to them. Sometimes we'd get invited to some guy's house - usually not the hot ones - The kind of guy who's parents turned a blind eye to a bunch of kids drinking in their basement. We would argue about which band was heavier, who was the best guitar player, if Ozzy was still cool, the upcoming AC/DC concert and where the next party was.
We smoked Marlboros and drank Budweiser and talked about the studded leather jackets we would own someday and reviewed the most recent Headbangers Ball.

Jesse said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jesse said...

Times Square When it Was Dirty

We used to call it crack alley. Well you used to call it that, and since I was a kid, I’d call it whatever you called it.
But then you would say I made up the name, because you liked the idea of a daughter who rivaled your genius. I think it made you feel more like a genius, for handing me those chromosomes.

We would walk together, my little hand in your big one, past Port Authority where the smell of steam from the grate mixed with the steam coming from the boiling oven part of the hot dog man’s cart mixed with the pee smell steaming off the homeless man’s cardboard carpet beneath him.

Past XXX movie theaters and VHS tapes for sale on the sidewalk, past a man with his arm missing from the elbow down and a wound on his forehead that always looked new, past the cheap empire state buildings and statues of liberties and I heart NY tshirts, past a young guy with high-tops and a boom box and a spray can and a lady with her skirt hiked up so high I had a to look up at you to make sure I didn’t by mistake look at her.

And we would get to the diner, the one that made the turkey sandwich I liked and the big fresh donuts I loved. You would get a coffee and stir in 2 of the pink packets and a bunch of cream and I would get a chocolate chip cookie. Then we would order my lunch for the next day since you never had any food in the house when I stayed with you, or when I didn’t stay with you. And we would take the packed up brown bag of diner food back up to your 43rd floor apartment and gaze out at the night city.

When Times Square was still dirty.

friv 4 said...

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