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I am a mommy, scribe, and middle-school English teacher. I am trying to cope with being separated from my beloved. DoUWantMore? email me: theprisonerswife@gmail.com

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Throwback Thursdays: Remembering '85

Posted by the prisoner's wife On 12:09 PM
Throwback Thursdays: Remembering '85

I am looking at 1985.

Regan was inaugurated for the second time (uh, why?), Volcanoes scorched Columbia, Earthquakes shook Mexico, the Huxtables were ruling Thursday nights, and I was a giggling, wide-eyed kindergartner that loved chasing my older brother, watching kung-fu flix on Saturday afternoons, and listening to the Get Fresh Crew.

Seven years separates my brother and I. While he was free to roam around our neighborhood with his friends, I was confined to the boarders of our yard, the only break in my confinement coming when my brother would let me tag along with him. I was so happy to be down with the crew. I was special, the only girl to be let into the circle. Did I care my brother would roll his eyes when our mom said that he could go to the store or the park or down the block, "as long as you take your sister with you"? Heck no! I was just happy to be along for the adventure.

Back then, our South Central neighborhood was a reasonably maintained, working-class section of LA. There was a park a few blocks away, a slurpie shop, liquor stores, and a make-shift arcade. When I was allowed to tag along it was usually to venture to the slurpie shop for ice cream. At the shop, the owner, who was also the Rec. Leader at the park, would allow the kids to crank up KDAY on the radio.

Through the speakers of someone's boombox I heard a man making music with his mouth. Later I would learn it was called beat-boxing, but back then, I thought it was so cool to create music with nothing but one's mouth. My brother and his friends would try to imitate Doug E Fresh, mimicing trumpets and telephones with their voices. While other boys posted up on the tables to Slick Rick's lyrics.

This is how I learned the words to the first song I ever memorized.

Somewhere between slurpies and beat-boxes, I sat and watched and tried to wrap my 5 year-old brain around the words on the radio. I kept coming back to Ricky D's "Tony the Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiger" line, because 1)I loved frosted flakes and 2)Tony the Tiger always looked so cool on his commercials. Little did I know that this was only the beginning of my love affair with music, and in particular, hip hop.

Every single significant year, moment, and memory of my life has a theme song. If a song comes on the radio, I am instantly taken back to where I was or what I was doing when I first heard it. My life, in essence, is a musical. Every memory inextricable connected to the rhythm and the rhyme of the music that moves me. Music is always there, like a trusting, welcoming friend, each and every time I sit and listen.

What's your theme song?

And what were you doing in '85?

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9 Response to 'Throwback Thursdays: Remembering '85'

  1. Stephen Bess Said,
    http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146167280000#c114616733031711891'> Thursday, April 27, 2006 12:48:00 PM

    Live in '85! That was our weak high school slogan. Yeah, that was the year I graduated High School. That's also the year that I first heard doves crying with Prince. :)Oh wait! That was '84. Anyway, they were nice times. That was also the eve of something very destructive called "Crack."


  2. http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146168480000#c114616849613036453'> Thursday, April 27, 2006 1:08:00 PM

    hey Papa Bess *lol*

    yeah, i didn't know what year to attribute crack to. it's all a blur during the 80s. i just remember it hit HARD. that & gang banging out here on the left coast. but i wanted to keep it positive & fun. there's so much to discuss about the 80s. i'm going to do "Throwback Thursdays" every thursday (or i'm going to try lol). examining a different time. of course i'm limited to '80-now *lol*, but i'll give it a shot.


  3. http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146170100000#c114617011917376243'> Thursday, April 27, 2006 1:35:00 PM

    Wow another YNQ fan.

    Ahh, what a great picture you've painted of the mid 80's. Ahh the good ole days. I was a kid wearing jellies with a few rocks stuck in em riding my bike to the candy lady. It's amazing how much candy you could buy for a buck back then.


  4. http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146171900000#c114617192531205327'> Thursday, April 27, 2006 2:05:00 PM

    Every single significant year, moment, and memory of my life has a theme song. If a song comes on the radio, I am instantly taken back to where I was or what I was doing when I first heard it.

    I know what you mean...Music for me has always been inextricably linked with memories. Well I was 15 in 1985, living in Liverpool, UK ...I'm not a Madonna fan or anything lol - but the song that comes to mind is "Into the Groove".


  5. http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146175740000#c114617579668284042'> Thursday, April 27, 2006 3:09:00 PM


    don't feel bad. Madonna was hot back in the day :)


  6. Knockout Zed Said,
    http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146202800000#c114620283709574542'> Thursday, April 27, 2006 10:40:00 PM

    I was 14 in '85. If I'm not mistaken, I was in an extreme pop music phase and a lot of songs blend together during that time. Sussudio comes to mind and the Tears For Fears album.

    I went to the first concert of my life that year: Hall and Oates. I also say UTFO in concert that year.

    Yeah, that was me, then.



  7. Actor Smurf Said,
    http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146235560000#c114623561947619397'> Friday, April 28, 2006 7:46:00 AM

    Wow in 85 I was learning that my father was not going to wake up ever again, my theme song was probably something from Sesame Street and I was learnign the world was a cruel and unjustice place.

    But wow, you painted quiet a picture of South Central LA...I can't wait to get to LA for a visit, all my friends think I will end up living there one day...but the way you showed it, it was like I actually saw you getting that slurpee and falling in love with hip hop...wow girl...Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrreat job! :)


  8. http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146240780000#c114624082464829120'> Friday, April 28, 2006 9:13:00 AM

    Zed: i think all of us were into lots of pop mucis in the 80s, you couldn't escape it, no matter where you lived.

    Actor Smurf: Thanks! If you need any LA info, feel free to ask. i'm SO over the whole "LA" thing, but if you're serious about acting (film, tv), then this is the place. I have a few actor friends & they are always grinding. good luck!


  9. http://theprisonerswife.blogspot.com/2006/04/throwback-thursdays-remembering-85.html?showComment=1146497940000#c114649799783748254'> Monday, May 01, 2006 8:39:00 AM

    Wow. '85. i was 16 and a budding drummer who had just discovered Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Pot.