"101 degrees in the shade..."
It's been hot in the Bay Area and I was joking with a friend that we should take the "Nestea Plunge." They had no idea what I was talking about which surprised me, given the iconic ad campaign ran from the 1970s through the 1990s (and came back in 2014).
I grew up on Cape Cod, so we didn't have a pool, we just went to the beach when it was hot. For hours, my friends and I would put our arms out and fall backwards into the Atlantic, trying to reenact the Plunge we saw on TV. It was like an in-water trust fall with only the waves to catch you.
Cripes, you all remember it, don't you? Surely it's just an anomaly that my friend didn't know about it.
"Temperature was up around 103..."
"The temperature was up around 111..."
"Come on, taste the taste of wetness..."
Even legendary groupie Pamela Des Barres took the Nestea Plunge
They're *still* taking the Plunge in the Philippines Read the rest
I came across the strangest Aloha shirt on Instagram the other day, one called the "Hawaiian Shuffle" ($55). It depicts Chunk of The Goonies, amongst the shirt's tropical foliage, doing his "Truffle Shuffle."
1. I'm 99.9% sure this is an unlicensed Goonies product, which means child-actor-turned-entertainment-lawyer Jeff Cohen (aka Chunk) won't see a dime from its sales (maybe I'm wrong!);
2. A 2015 UPROXX article describes how the film's director Richard Donner felt about that scene and what he did to help Cohen later in life:
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Watching the movie as kids, we probably weren’t too aware of how mean the “Truffle Shuffle” was, mainly because Chunk reluctantly performed it for his friends and then went about his business... However, Donner recalls it as a “painful” scene to film and it was ultimately the catalyst for his lasting relationship with Cohen.
“There was no direction,” Donner explained. “I don’t take any credit for that, it was just Jeff. He had to stand on that stump and be ridiculed by his friends so he could come in the house, and he did it as best as that character could do it. So much humor comes from pain. Although, I’m sure he was too young to be analytical about it, but I’m sure that was part of his instincts. It was a painful scene.”
In fact, Cohen told us that Donner hiring him as a production assistant when he was jobless was what opened the door for him to “learn the business of show business.”
“Jeff became very special as an individual for me when he did the Truffle Shuffle because there was an honest pain in that scene for that little boy in front of those little kids,” Donner said.
Activate your willing suspension of disbelief because Squirrel Monkey's back with Wonders of the World Wide Web. In this episode, they envision Amazon, "the department store of the future," as a virtual department store in the eighties. It's not historically accurate by any means, but that's part of what makes it so fun to watch.
Previously: If Siri existed in the 1980s Read the rest
A company by the name of Stance makes really fun socks. Their licensed ones are particularly nice. I was recently gifted a pair of their Thriller socks ($18) and I absolutely adore them. They're thick, well-made, and detailed. Plus, they are packaged in a way that shows the top sock -- the before-transformation Michael Jackson -- which then reveals the werewolf sock underneath when its pulled back.
I learned that they sell a $55 three-pack of the socks (shown above) which also includes a pair of Michael Jackson as the zombie.
Thanks, M! Read the rest
David Bowie and his bulge will be viewable on big screens nationwide come April 29, May 1, and May 2. Fathom Events' three-day fan celebration will bring back Jim Henson's 1986 fantasy Labyrinth to select cinemas. Audience members are encouraged to wear costumes.
The event will include exclusive introductions by Brian Henson and Jennifer Connelly. In addition, audiences will enjoy a special theatrical screening excerpt from the award-winning fantasy series “The Storyteller.”
In case you thought you imagined the enormity of his bulge... you didn't:
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Known worldwide for his incredible fingerstyle guitar covers of popular songs, Alexandr Misko performs a-ha's 1985 hit "Take on Me" in his latest video.
The 20-year-old Russian musician writes, "This song is a tough one to play, but i tried my best!" (He's humble to boot!)
Previously: Air-horn version of a-ha's 'Take on Me' Read the rest
Black Candies: The Eighties
(published by So Say We All Press
) features 23 stories of analog horror that slice through the late-night whirr of VHS, the big hair, and neon parties to prove that nostalgia is the real murderer behind the mask.
Sarah LaBrie’s story "Survivor" from Black Candies: The Eighties reexamines the relationship between the masked killer and his victim, a lively take that usurps the "final girl" trope from ‘80s slashers. Enjoy!
I have fond memories of watching ABC's early-1980s comedy The Greatest American Hero and was only mildly surprised to hear they are bringing it back (as a pilot, for now). What was surprising is that the "hero" will be a "heroine" in the reboot.
...Hannah Simone has been tapped for the title role in ABC’s single-camera comedy pilot The Greatest American Hero, from the Fresh Off the Boat duo of Rachna Fruchbom and Nahnatchka Khan. In the reimagining with a gender switch of Steven J. Cannell’s 1981 cult classic, the unlikely (super)hero at the center, played by William Katt in the original, is being reconceived as an Indian-American woman.
Written by Fruchbom, The Greatest American Hero centers around Meera (Simone), a 30-year-old woman who loves tequila and karaoke and has spent her life searching and failing to find meaning, much to the chagrin of her traditional Indian-American family. An inexplicable event occurs that will change the course of Meera’s life forever: she is entrusted with a super suit to protect the planet. Meera may have finally found purpose, but the world has never been in more unreliable hands.
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If you're a child of the seventies, you'll probably remember that while the sitcom Happy Days aired from 1974 to 1984, it was set in Milwaukee in the late fifties.
Ok, so in 1980, an animated spin-off series called The Fonz and the Happy Days Gang hit the Saturday morning cartoon circuit, lasting just two years. In those two seasons, they meet a "future chick" named Cupcake and are accidentally hurled through time and space in a janky spaceship with Mr. Cool, a talking dog. This quasi-educational show (which has Wolfman Jack as its narrator) chronicles their journey trying to get back to 1957, but first they jump to significant historical time and places, like the Salem Witch Trials.
So, it's a cartoon, made for early-eighties kids, of fifties youth bouncing around in time trying to get back to 1957. Sure... why not?.
If you have the time (heh), watch all of Season 1 and Season 2.
If you're wondering, this cartoon happened two years after Robin Williams landed a small role as Mork on the live-action Happy Days (which eventually turned into the spin-off, Mork & Mindy) and just three years after the Fonz jumped the shark.
Ayyy... Can you dig it?
(Weird Universe) Read the rest
Leave it to Squirrel Monkey (previously) to imagine what Siri might have been like in the eighties. In this spoof called Wonders of the World Wide Web, they give the ancient alter ego of Apple's voice-controlled personal assistant a garbled, synthesized voice which I found particularly funny. Be sure to watch the whole video, as it just gets weirder as it goes along.
(Tastefully Offensive) Read the rest
Earworm alert: Remix maestro melodysheep (previously) just released "Phone Home," a "happy little E.T. song to brighten your day." It did. Read the rest
Between 1988 and 1990, Tacoma musician John Purkey says Kurt Cobain gave him demo tapes. Now, he's shared those early Nirvana cassettes on YouTube.
One tape includes Bleach demos recorded during the band’s first ever session in 1988 at Reciprocal Studios in Seattle, with Melvins drummer Dale Crover on the drums. Another features Nevermind demos recorded with Crover’s short-lived replacement Chad Channing, who left the band during the making of the project and was replaced by Dave Grohl.
The audio is raw, and many of the demos have seen the light of day via the numerous Nirvana compilations released after Cobain’s death, but the collection and backstory is interesting. Purkey played in several Tacoma bands during Nirvana’s early years and watched the band develop from scratch. He kept the cassettes in a metal box, hidden inside a second metal box, for years, he says in an accompanying video.
(Dazed) Read the rest
Starting in 1980, spurred by popularity of the Rubik's Cube, UK-based Tony Fisher started passionately collecting "twisty puzzles."
Over the years, he's become quite the collector and inventor. All his "transformations" are really impressive. In fact, in 2016, he became a Guinness World Record holder for "World's Largest Rubik's Cube."
Well, now he has fashioned a fully-functional Rubik's Cube out of ice.
This is my Rubik's Cube made from 95% ice and it is fully functional. All 8 corners and 12 edges are solid ice. The 6 centres are 50% ice and the core is plastic. The screws and springs are regular metal ones. The puzzle shown is a first attempt and works surprising well. I am thinking about making others with full ice centres and also fully coloured ones.
This video doesn't show how he made it and you'll see that the video footage is reversed in the beginning, making the melting ice seemingly "build" the toy. He does, however, write that he'll be posting the construction video soon.
Previously: WATCH: World record smallest 7x7x7 Rubik's Cube Read the rest
Eighties icon Pee-wee Herman is now featured on this fun t-shirt by Creepy Co. To see the full effect, pop on a pair of paper anaglyph glasses (included).
Oui, they made a 3D Pee-wee tee! It's available now for $26.99. Read the rest
Things have been turned upside down (see what I did there?) in the world of Stranger Things as the good folks at Bad Lip Reading have dubbed over original scenes from the show and created a funny sitcom version of it (Wonder Years, anyone?). It's 18 minutes long and worth a watch, especially if you're a fan of the popular Netflix series.
Previously: Watch this Bad Lip Reading of Trump's inauguration day Read the rest
This woolen Pac-Man sweater, an Icelandic peysa, popped up in my Facebook feed on Wednesday and it made me squee with delight. It's the handiwork of my friend Christine Clarke.
She told me that her husband, Doctor Popular, designed the sweater in knittingpatterns.is and, after some tweaking, she knit it up for him.
"I told him that if he designed a sweater, I'd knit it for him. But since he never knitted before, it was really difficult to implement his original design, so I ended up making a lot of modifications that didn't really affect the look but made a huge difference in how easy it was to knit."
And knit it, she did...
Christine told me she has been working on the sweater on and off for months, "I started it early February of this year, and of course I only finished it now."
If you'd like to knit one for yourself (and you're roughly the same size as Doc Pop), they've been kind enough to share the pdf pattern with us. Download it here. Christine says spent about $80 on yarn "because I had to get all the different colors, so even for a small accent (like the white), I bought a whole ball of it, so I'll have to think of a different project for all the leftovers."
Can't wait to see what's next!
photos by Christine Clarke and Doc Pop Read the rest
Remember that "shame" video of the kid getting a Nintendo as a gift in 1988? Well, my former child actor friend Jared Hirsch saw it too and shared his own "shame" video from 1998 with me. His nearly two-hour long submission captures the splendor, joy, and robot sunglasses of his Bar Mitzvah reception on Staten Island.
I asked Jared if he had anything he'd like to say about the video. This is what he wrote back:
In 1988, I was a 13 year old growing up in Staten Island, the curious fifth borough in New York City. As all good young Jewish kids my age, my devoted parents threw me a classic 80s Bar Mitzvah. It was like a wedding, but for horny pre- and just-turned teens. Rented hall, live band, videographer, catered dinner, dancing, games, and all the attention I craved. I remember later that night sitting on their bed, counting all of the savings bonds I was gifted for becoming a man and feeling like a thousandaire. In 10 years, I cashed them and paid for a whole month of college. Behold in all it's transferred from VHS glory, my Bar Mitzvah party. Don't miss the Bar Mitzvah rap at 1hr10min, or my relatives not understanding how a video camera works. Delight in the snazzy renditions of your favorite 70s and 80 party songs. Cringe at the hair. Laugh at me for my overinflated ego, but don't forget that you too were 13 once.
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