Tuesday, April 24

Nostalgia

Yesterday was a busy day.  I was into the clinic for ultrasounds etc, so I was late for work.  And when I got there, there was a crap-ton of it waiting for me, mostly smaller projects and meetings but all of it fairly time sensitive.  I got home from work around 8:15 just brain dead and tired.  Not up to tackling the red shorts because I'm sure I'd make it worse and hurt myself in the process.  So I'm afraid I don't have sewing news to share today.

I watched some television with Mr. Lina and then he headed off to have a bath.  And you know what I found on NetFlix?  Jem and the Holograms
Suddenly I was back in Senior Public school (grades 6-8) nearly being late for choir/band practice because Jem was on at 7:30-8:00am and I needed to leave at 7:55 for choir/band.  I have two younger brothers, the vast majority of the television I watched as a kid was either too young for me or aimed at boys.  I can sing the theme song to programs such as GI Joe, Thundercats, He-Man, Transformers and it's not because I was their primary target audience, rather the halo effect of siblings.  Jem is the one show I really remember getting my way and watching what I wanted.  I'm sure there were others, I did get my fair share of Strawberry Shortcake in any format, but this one is at an age where I was old enough to cave on a lot ("be nice, he's only 6" type reasoning) and old enough to remember. 

Anyhoo...  I ended up watching 6 or 7 episodes last night while I picked away a few things and read a few blogs.  It was actually pretty much what I remembered, not incredibly fantastic but amusing.  Videos are put in about 2 spots in an episode and the lyrics relate to the plot of the episode so they don't feel too forced.  Still, I'm glad I watched it alone, without the nostalgia fuzziness, Mr. Lina would have had enough after one episode.

I'm not sure that anything dates someone more than children's television.  Jem was apparently only on the air from 1985-1988 in the US, I imagine the timing was the same here in Canada.  That's Grade 5-7 for me.  Another year or two older and I wouldn't have cared, a few years younger and I wouldn't understand.  There are long running shows like Sesame Street that speak to a wider population, but I watched it pre-Elmo.  I remember Mr Hooper.  Prior to meeting Mr. Lina, I went on a single date with someone who I thought was a little older than me when we met, but over dinner it became clear there were more years between us than I initially guessed.   The 3-4 years difference I expected was actually more like 7-8.  Still, I was 25, that's not impossible with the right people.  But wow, dinner was a disaster (Seraphinalina Tip for Dating - always start with a beverage, you can politely leave after 15 minutes).  He seemed to pick up on things that highlighted the difference rather than finding common ground.  It was clearly not to be.

So let me see if I can take this back to fashion at the very least.  ElleC said somewhere (in comments maybe?) that when fashions return into style, it doesn't always work if you lived through it the first time.  It feels more like you just forgot the intervening decades and aged in place.  She's got a good point.  I was turning 10 as Jem went on the air, so those late 80's are formative tween years for me, I was aware of pop music, MuchMusic (like MTV), etc.  When we watch episodes of Miami Vice, I go to town on the shoulder pads, the crazy huge hair, the spandex, the neon... and then Mr. Lina calls me on this when I ooh and ah over dresses in a Cary Grant or Marilyn Monroe movie - why is one trend ridiculous and the other pretty? 

As a little girl, is anyone more beautiful than your mom?  Maybe an aunt or your grandmother?  Younger pictures of them somehow make them look even better.  I know I thought my mom was stunning.  There are pictures from my first Chirstmas, her face is pale, red lips and heavy eyeliner, that was makeup to perfection to me.  I'm not sure my Nana was ever cute-pretty the way I see myself.  Nana had character, a stronger nose than Mom or I, a different kind of beautiful.  When I look at pictures of her when she was young (born 1916, so anywhere from the 1930's on), the pictures are so small, it is hard to see the details of her face if it's not a portrait, but her dresses... oh my.  She had some lovely clothing and knew how to play up her trim figure.  I wonder if some of the appeal of vintage for some is either a time period with styles that suit your body type so you do look good, or the feeling of a beautiful memory of someone in a 50's dress with matching hat and white purse who looks a little bit like you thanks to genetics.  But too close... well... you know why it went out of fashion in the first place.

2 comments:

  1. MUAHAHA! I will have to see if I can get the girls watching that. I confess we (my husband more than I) have made it a bit of a mission to educate them in as much 80s-kitsch as we can. I had a Jem doll (she was not as pretty as Barbie, though), but mostly only saw episodes I could rent at our local video store. My absorption of 80s pop-culture was really sporadic since we didn't have cable, didn't listen to music radio (CBC all the way), and didn't go to movies terribly often. Funny, though, I preferred a lot of the shows that were, in hind-sight, aimed at boys---He-Man (also She-Ra of course), Thundercats, Ninja Turtles. I suspect you're just enough older than me (I was born in 80) that you may have missed the Ninja Turtles phenom, as it seemed to span from my age-group to my younger brother's.

    Frankly, growing up I loathed 80s fashion. I don't remember liking neon, bubble skirts, shoulder pads, or poofy hair even when I was a child, and of course by the time I was a teen the full-on 80s rejection was in force. My husband is only two years older than me, but grew up much more pop-culture-saturated, and he still loves a lot of 80s style. After over a decade together, I've learned to appreciate it, if not actually *like* most aspects...

    I never liked how my mom looked, when I was little (Don't tell her!). Our colour palettes are too different (she's the consummate autumn), and I could never see past the "ugly colours". In a lot of ways, I think I defined parts of myself as being opposite of her---she liked gold, so I would wear silver; she liked off-white, so I liked white. Strange, in hind-sight. Some of that has lasted, some hasn't.

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    1. I was aware of TMNT, but no, the real craze for it didn't hit me. Kind of like Jem, I liked the show, but I wasn't interested in the dolls, mind you I didn't really like Barbie in the first place.

      I did get a bit of the neon trend. One of my favourite sweat shirts was florescent pink with white lips, or white with pink lips, I just remember loving it. And wearing it to a Madonna themed birthday party in 1984. I believe there is a picture of me from that party... somewhere.

      I'm not fond of autumn colours either, I would have seen them as ugly for sure. My Nana wore a lot of corals, too orange based for me to really like. But it was a colour that worked for her.

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