Totally 80s: Scratch ‘n’ Sniff stickers

Welcome the next installment of my year-long look back at the decade that was ruled by big hair and bigger egos. Every other week I’ll be covering pop culture tidbits from the 1980s, sharing memories, choking on the ridiculousness, and maybe offering an insight or two into what made the 1980s so great/bad/silly. Serving as my inspiration are two lists from Buzzfeed, and I’ll include links to the original list items in each post. So throw on your neon windbreaker, lace up your hi-tops, and adjust your Wayfarers, because this DeLorean is taking off! (Ugh. Did I really just type that? Gag me with spoon, seriously.)

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List item #46 from 50 Things only ’80s Kids Can Understand

The joy of the first scratch on a brand new Scratch ‘n’ Sniff sticker.

I can practically smell the memories from here.

I can practically smell the memories from here.

My first sticker book, my only sticker book, was 50¢ spiral-bound jammy with the words “STICKERS” drawn ever so colorfully and creatively on the front cover (by yours truly). I’ve mentioned stickers several times in these here posts, so I don’t think the fact that I made my own sticker book would come as much of a shock. The phenomenon of sticker collecting as it pertained to the 1980s isn’t one that even I think I comprehended at the time, but I was obligated to participate in nonetheless.

Obligated?

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The First Encounter

cary:

United We Game‘s celebration of Halloween surges onward with our Spooky Silly Poetry Contest! Now’s a great time to write up a quick, little (or large) poem about your favorite scary game and submit to UWG. (Email your entries to wegameunited@gmail.com.) We’re collecting your poems through October 31st, and next month, we’re going to vote on our favorite! That one person will be crowned, in the name in fun, the poet supreme of spooky silly games!

Look, if I can write a poem, anyone on the planet can. And I’m supporting the spirit of the contest with my own attempts at writing verse and such. Here’s one I recently posted about game LIMBO and the first encounter with its infamous spider.

Originally posted on United We Game:

Image by Flickr user Justin.

Image by Flickr user Justin .

With this post, I hereby submit another group of carefully worded…er, words that may be spooky and/or silly. I don’t think I’m spoiling too much when I say that in the game LIMBO is a spider. I knew that going in, and my first encounter with it was royally unpleasant; hence, the following.

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I ain’t afraid of no ghosts! Being the fifth wheel…now that’s another story.

Ghostbusters has been all up in the news lately. This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the original movie. (YAY!) Many sites have reported about a possible reboot of the franchise starring women in the main roles. (YAY! I hope.) It’s the month of ghosts and goblins, and “The Ghosbusters” remains a very popular Halloween trend. Also, Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff is currently running a Ghostbusters-themed update in celebration of the holiday. So yeah…Ghostbusters. Seems appropriate then that I should get back to Ghostbusters: The Video Game (2009), which I valiantly attempted to do recently…again.

Ghosbusters: The Video Game cover art © Atari, Columbia Pictures, Sony, et al.

Ghosbusters: The Video Game cover art © Atari, Columbia Pictures, Sony, et al.

As I sit here staring at my keyboard, I realize this post could go in many different directions. Should I talk about how cool I felt in grade school for being among the first of my peers to proudly state that I had seen the most awesomest movie since Return of the Jedi? (Eh, that’s the whole story.) Should I go into how prevalent quotes from Ghostbusters are in my household? (Back off man, I’m a scientist. Also, no.) Should I delve into the social ramifications of Ghostbuters itself and how it forever altered my views on the supernatural. (Christ almighty, NO!) Okay then, let’s just talk about the game, because all my tendrils of thought concerning it boil down to one single point: I want to like Ghostbusters: TGV so much more than I do.

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The Importance of Friends

cary:

This year marks the 20th anniversary of lots of things, but none are as important to me as the premiere of the television show Friends. That might sound a little lame, but through Friends I became connected. Connected to the people I knew and loved with whom I watch the show, and connected to the greater zeitgeist that arose from the show itself. I still think it’s one of the best sitcoms ever created, and it’s nothing less than a true high point of the 1990s. If you feel that way as well, click below to head over to Geek Force Network for my own little treatise on the importance of Friends.

Originally posted on Geek Force Network:

This coming Monday (September 22nd) marks the 20th anniversary of the first airing of the first episode of the sitcom Friends. And while I could blather on about how that makes me feel “soooo old!” instead, Friends reminds me more of my friends and the bonds we formed over the show. But more than that, Friends was simply fine television. Yeah, it was (and still is) easy to make fun of its broadness and archetypical characters, or put down for being too fluffy and inconsequential, but Friends demonstrated a power that had only been captured by a handful of sitcoms before it. It was a show that was easy for everyone to watch. Whether you laughed with the cast or at it, you still laughed, and you still watched because there was just some about it that was so appealing.

I didn’t watch Friends from the start. In fact…

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Totally 80s: Rainbow Brite

Welcome the next installment of my year-long look back at the decade that was ruled by big hair and bigger egos. Every other week I’ll be covering pop culture tidbits from the 1980s, sharing memories, choking on the ridiculousness, and maybe offering an insight or two into what made the 1980s so great/bad/silly. Serving as my inspiration are two lists from Buzzfeed, and I’ll include links to the original list items in each post. So throw on your neon windbreaker, lace up your hi-tops, and adjust your Wayfarers, because this DeLorean is taking off! (Ugh. Did I really just type that? Gag me with spoon, seriously.)

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List item #12 from 53 Things Only 80s Girls Can Understand

Thinking Rainbow Brite was the coolest girl EVER and drawing fashion inspiration from her colorful getups.

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This post is all about motherfucking RAINBOWS, yo!

When I first went through BuzzFeed’s 1980s-themed lists in preparation for these posts, I highlighted this one about Rainbow Brite because two things immediately jumped to mind: my Rainbow Brite doll (that I loved so much more than my Cabbage Patch Kid), and my Rainbow Brite sheets (the only character sheets I ever had).

Now that I’m here actually writing about Rainbow Brite, all I can think of is the color black.

See, the Buzzfeed list item specifically referenced garnering fashion inspiration from Rainbow Brite. I really can’t say much to that one way or another. When I was in to Rainbow Brite, fashion wasn’t much on my mind. However, color was. And it’s quite possible that Rainbow Brite had something to do with that.

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A GAME OF SPOOKY SILLY POETRY!

This month United We Game is running a new contest, a fun contest, a contest that’s all about spooky, silly poetry! No dirges on death, no opulent odes, no prowling prose — just simple, creative lines of text (rhyming welcome but not required) written in honor or your favorite scary games (cause of Halloween and all that)! Clicking on the link below will take you to UWG’s contest post containing submission guidelines, UWG’s email, and further details. We’re going to be posting all poems on our site throughout the month and will be voting for our favorites come the 31st. One single wordsmith will be crowned the “winner” and shall receive all the proper accolades and flourishes! So get crackin’ with that creativity and submit your spooky, silly poem today.

A game of spooky, silly poetry!

Choice in video games. Or not. Also, The Stanley Parable.

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It’s with severely mixed emotions that I recall The Stanley Parable (by Galactic Cafe) here for you today. Let me start out by saying, in bold and italics just so that things are clear… SPOILERS. Maybe. I don’t actually know yet because I can’t quiet foresee the direction this post might take. I mean, I’m probably going to spoil something along the way, but maybe it won’t be a big deal considering the game. If you not played the game but want to, I’d encourage you to just go play it and formulate your own opinions about it. It’s one of those games that has a big, noticeable mission statement that can be interpreted a number of different ways. So here’s my interpretation.

First off, I’ll be horribly honest. The only reason The Stanley Parable made it onto my radar was because it was named in sooooo many of those cursed “Game of the Year” lists at the end of 2013. Much like Gone Home, hearing or reading about The Stanley Parable at the end of 2013 was nearly unavoidable. At a certain point, I kinda wanted everyone to just shut up about it. Then again, I bought it and Gone Home together, so there ya go. However, my husband played it before I did, and I’ll never forget the quizzical look on his face when, upon “completion,” he said “I finished it…I think?” The awkward conversation that followed as he tried to explain the game without spoiling it was also quite puzzling. It even ended with a brief dip into the “what is a ‘video game’?” question, which neither of us tried to answer.

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iTunes Diaries, entry #21: “Question” by The Moody Blues

I was once a little…um, okay, terribly obsessed with iTunes.  I got my first iPod in 2004 and became immediately entranced by Apple’s seeming infinite lists of music for sale.  Over the years, I spent way too much time on iTunes and spent way too much money on music, some of which was great, and some of which was not.  In 2011, for the sake of my sanity and my bank account, I went cold turkey.  I suspended my iTunes activities and completely stopped visiting site.  With the iTunes Diaries, I take a look back, highlighting the good, the bad, and the ugly in music that I just had to have in the moment. 

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In thinking about how my iTunes Diary entries are now old enough to drink (Happy 21st!), I’m amazed at just how many musically-connected memories I harbor. I guess we all do to varying degrees, because music is always “there.” It’s kinda like the Force — it surrounds us and holds the universe together, or something like that in Yoda-speak. I listen to music every day; and even when I don’t have my headphones on, I hear music everywhere I go, from car speakers on the highway to muzak in the grocery store. Songs easily stick themselves to my synapses like burrs…nice burrs, the kind that don’t scratch or muss your hair. For about the past week, this sexy beast has been rattling around the ol’ gray matter:

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