Friday, October 23, 2009

1989...Coolest Year. EVAR. Part 1

When my brother Lance got married back in '04, I took the one opportunity I'd ever had for some comedy at his expense by recounting world history over the time he and Gretchen had been friends, dating, or otherwise. As I rolled over current and past events, a thought occurred to me: 1989 might have possibly been one of the most important years of my life--maybe even in recent history!

OK...maybe that's going a bit too far...

That said, some pretty cool stuff happened in '89. The 90's weren't yet here, the 80's were going out in a blaze of glory (didn't someone in the 80's sing about that once? wink, wink...), and the world was indeed going through some big changes. So what's the big deal about 1989?

Yup...time for another list! Perhaps I'll put this one in order later, but for now, these are in the order I can recall them.

10.) Lance is Gone! - For the first time in my life, I was without my big  brother. Having graduated in Perry High School's class of 1988, he headed off the next fall to Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Even though he was only two hours away, at 8 years old, that two hours may as well have been 12. His room was still as he left it (which meant I could sneak in and play with his Star Wars stuff!), but not seeing him in front of that Apple IIe in our dining room was...weird! Since I had pretty much all good memories of growing up with him (despite Dad's telling me that that story wasn't always true), I was really missing him...the guy was my idol!

9.) Batman - If you don't remember this movie, you:
a.) Apparently have no soul
b.) Were not alive in the past century
c.) Did not watch TV or go to Taco Bell, your local shopping mall, or pretty much anywhere public in 1989
d.) Did not enjoy Diet Coke just for the taste of it

For an 8yr-old whose older brother was into comic books, the release of Batman was nothing short...of epoch-making (how's that for a play on words?). In 1989, you simply could not escape Bat-mania. The movie made $750 million in merchandising alone and, for those whose last picture of the Bat was Adam West running down the pier carrying a giant cherry bomb above his head, a completely redefined our vision of the man in the cowl. Well, that and I still randomly quote some of Jack Nicholson's lines from it to this day.

8.) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Arcade Game - I guess you could argue that X-Men or The Simpsons had more famous beat-em 'ups, but as anyone who lived through the late 80's and early 90's knows, the only other thing you couldn't escape besides Batman were the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Heck, the only reason their first live-action movie won't be on this list is that it came out in 1990.

I never had enough time or quarters to beat this one, unfortunately. Maybe one day I'll buy an old cabinet to go right next to my "one-day" Marvel vs. Street Fighter cabinet!

7.) Mom and Dad celebrate 20 years together - On November 1st, 1989, Dad dragged Spence and I out on the front lawn to take a picture with a big sign while we waited for Mom to get home.  I'm guessing given that I'm holding my RC car that he had to bribe us a little bit to do it (though making Mom smile didn't take much bribing on our part!).  Of course, I wasn't thinking about it at the time, but this was a pretty big moment for them.  These days, 20 years of doing anything is to be commended--to be married for that long is nothing short of astounding.  The only thing that makes this moment any less significant is that in a little over a week, they'll have been married for double that!

Well, that's it for the first installment.  I'll be adding to the list periodically.  Share some of your experiences from '89 if you're interested :-)


1 comment:

Miranda said...

89 was a great year... looking forward to part II ;-)