“I’ll Be Alone”

“Dancing, you know it baby” – Simple Minds

My favorite sitcom these days begins their episodes with the popular phrase “it was 1980-something” and that show, of course, is the popular ABC show “The Goldbergs.”  I’ll be honest, the first one or two episodes I wasn’t sold.  I wanted a little more “Wonder Years,” but instead got more “Roseanne.”  I hated the screaming at each other and thought why do I have to see Murray drop his pants and walk around in his tightie-whities?  I kind of wrote the show off and didn’t think much more about it until season two came and I gave it another chance.  Thankfully, the show has really grown on me, and has made its own way in the difficult, ever-changing landscape of network television.  While I was hoping for another “Wonder Years,” I’m glad I didn’t get that, because this show has its’ own uniqueness, and does an awesome job of capturing all of the hilarious fads and fashions of the 80’s.  The real-life footage that the real Adam Goldberg throws in at the end of most of the episodes just helps with authenticity of the show.

I have to say that I am pumped after seeing previews for the first episode of season four.  “The Goldbergs” are paying tribute to one of the greatest movies of the 80’s and of all-time, in my opinion – “The Breakfast Club”

John Hughes classic about five students forced to spend all day Saturday in detention is genius thanks to its well-written script and casting of Judd Nelson (Bender; this part almost went to John Cusack), Molly Ringwold (Claire), Emilio Estevez (Andy), Ally Sheedy (Allison), Michael Anthony Hall (Brian), and Paul Gleason as Principal Richard “Dick” Vernon – “Don’t mess with the bull young man.  You’ll get the horns.”

o-breakfast-club-570

Pretty sure I would have made a solid sixth member of this crew back in 1985.  

“Tell me your troubles and doubts.”

Well it wasn’t 1980-something, but instead it was February 15, 1985 and I was a skinny, awkward 13 year old 8th grader at Whittier Middle School in Norman, Oklahoma, when “The Breakfast Club” was released in theaters.

whittier

The underground Whittier Middle School that I know!

The movie was the first and only (as best I recall) R rated movie I ever snuck into.  Heck, I was almost 14 and practically an adult!  The movie was playing at the old Village 6 Cinemas in the Brookhaven Village (it’s now a swanky Starbuck’s where I get my middle-aged over-priced $5 lattes when I’m in town visiting my parents).  Just like any sneaky teenager, you could buy a ticket as you walked in the front doors for one show and then when no one was paying attention you could easily slip into the theater of the show you wanted.  I have no idea what ticket I bought that night (it might have been “Turk 182!” – how about that for a movie you’ve long forgotten about or maybe have never seen!), but my best friend Barry and I met our 8th grade girlfriends there and snuck into together.  It was all so rebellious sneaking into a R rated movie full of adult language and drug use!  I’m pretty sure I even held hands with my girlfriend at the time or possibly even wrapped my arm around her.

“Will you recognize me?  Call my name or walk on by?”

Part of the beauty of the movie is the simplicity of it all.  It’s not really outdated because technology (think phones or computers) was not prominent in the movie and high schools haven’t changed much in the last 30 years.  They still have libraries and lockers and basketball gyms.  And most of all, high schools still have cliques, and relationships between and within those cliques.  And there will always be teenagers filling these hallways and classrooms yearning to be understood during an uncertain and awkward time in their lives.  The late, great John Hughes did a solid job of presenting someone most any teenager could and can still relate to. Thirty years later there are jocks and nerds and preppies and rebels and strange outcasts at every school.  There are boyfriends and girlfriends that seem like they will last forever and there are those relationships that won’t last two weeks.  There are earrings to exchange.  There are letterman jackets to keep your girlfriend warm, and there are still smart-mouth know-it-alls ready to challenge authority with a world full of possibilities ahead.

For years I’ve had this dream of dressing up on Halloween like Bender and then finding a field goal post to take a picture next to.  I haven’t found the correct wardrobe yet, but when I do, you’ll see the coolest grey-headed 40 something posing with his fist in the air while one of the great songs of the 80’s plays in the background.

Needless to say I’m anxious to see little Adam Goldberg pull this off when “The Goldbergs” season four premieres on Wednesday, September 21.

goldbergs

“Rain keeps falling.  Rain keeps falling.  Down, down, down, down.”

“The Breakfast Club” also features one of my top five 80’s songs.  I don’t ever turn the station if it comes on.

Reportedly, Simple Minds lead singer Jim Kerr hated the mess that was created for the shooting of this music video, and was none too happy about it during shooting.  Irregardless, the video is still a timeless piece for me.  So, let’s all shout it out… “Hey! hey! hey! hey!”

“Don’t You Forget About Me”

Dear Reader,

We accept the fact that we had to spend nearly a whole week writing this post so there’d be something new on here and would cause you to spend a good two to three minutes reading it.  But we think you’re crazy to expect us to define this blog.  You visit and read this blog as you see it.  In the simplest of terms.  The most convenient definitions.  But what we’ve found is this blog is sometimes funny…

and sometimes nostalgic…

and sometimes thought-provoking…

and sometimes sad…

and sometimes just strange.

I hope this answers your question (that you probably didn’t have).

sincerely (yours),

the 80’s

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