Oh, Debbie Gibson!

After I had put the Best Of 2017 Spotify playlist together I mentioned in my previous post, I tweeted all of the artists to let them know that they had been included, but Twitter decided to “shadowban” me, so now none of my tweets can be seen! I have contacted Twitter Support, so hopefully they should fix it soon.

As I was feeling sorry for myself, I decided to listen to music (which usually cheers me up, and I’m on a diet so I can’t binge eat, like I usually would when something upsets me!), and I found that I had saved Debbie Gibson in my albums list.

When I was 11, Debbie Gibson brought out her album “Electric Youth” and somehow, I ended up with it on cassette. I would dance to that album in the house every chance I got, and I even made up a dance routine to the title track, though I couldn’t remember it now if my life depended on it. I just listened to it and ended up having a little dance, and it really cheered me up. It’s such a great song, so here’s the video for you, just in case you need a little pick-me-up 🙂

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Happy birthday Janet Jackson!

Today (16th May 2016) is Janet Jackson’s 50th birthday! I have always been a big fan of Janet’s, ever since I was given a cassette copy of her 1989 album Rhythm Nation 1814 when I was 11 years old. It’s such a great album and I was hooked from the start. Not only is it a great album, but her videos are filmic masterpieces. To celebrate Janet’s birthday, here’s my favourite song from Rhythm Nation 1814 🙂

Desserts from my childhood

I have to be honest and say that I have been inspired to write this post because of my friend Nostalgia Pie‘s blog post Old-Skool Ice-Cream Flavours! I was writing in the comments that when we kids we used to eat neopolitan ice cream slices (from an ice cream block) between two ice cream wafers, which was known in our house as an “ice cream sandwich”. This got me to thinking about other desserts that we had growing up, and here we are!

Apple Charlotte
Now, from having a look around Google, it would appear that Apple Charlotte is actually a completely different pudding! The Apple Charlotte online uses bread as an ingredient, whereas my Apple Charlotte didn’t. It actually looked like the below:

Apple CharlotteThe way my mum made it was to layer the bottom of a bowl with canned apples (I think they were puréed). She would then make up some Dream Topping for the middle layer. The top layer was cornflakes mixed with golden syrup. I remember it went in the fridge for some length of time, which as a child just seemed aaaaaages! So, I have no idea what mine was called, but it was decadently delicious!

Arctic roll
Arctic roll was a roll of ice cream (we only ever had vanilla) which was wrapped in sponge with some raspberry sauce between the sponge and the ice cream. To make it last, as it was a treat, we had the thinnest slices going, so if I had some now, I think I’d probably try and eat at least quarter of it in one go!


Supermousse
Before I started researching for this blog post, I hadn’t even known that this pudding had a name! The strawberry ones were my favourite. You were supposed to let them thaw a little but we could never wait and always ate them frozen, which took ages with a small spoon. It kept us quiet though 😀


I really want pudding now!

Retro flashback sticker time for Throwback Thursday!

I recently had a conversation in work with a friend about the magazines that were available to buy when we were younger, like Mizz, More!, Fast Forward, Big! Magazine, Look-In, Smash Hits, Just Seventeen/J17 and TV Hits. I remembered that I have an A4 lever arch folder that I’ve since I was a teenager and it’s covered with stickers from the magazines mentioned above. I’ve taken photos to show you so that you can also enjoy a trip down memory lane, or if you’re a lot younger than me (I’m 36), you can say, “who are they?” lol

The front of the folder
The front of the folder
Back of the folder
Back of the folder
Inside left of the folder
Inside left of the folder
Inside right of the folder
Inside right of the folder

And now for the lettered stickers! I don’t seem to have any images for I, Q, V, X or Y…

A

B1

B2

C

D

E

F

G

H

J

K

L

M1

M2

N

O

P

R

S

T

U

W

Z

I used to have paper-rounds when I was a teenager and I remember that I didn’t actually get paid any money by the newsagents because I had so many magazines reserved for me each week that I was literally working just to pay off my magazine bills!

Dizzy Egg

When I was younger (back in the mid 1990s), I bought a secondhand Spectrum ZX 128K. It was an amazing console, even though you had to wait an AGE for the game to load… Me and my younger brother would set the cassette up and slowly creep out of the bedroom, believing that floor vibrations were responsible for past times when it had crashed. We’d leave it for 10 minutes and slowly peep around the bedroom door to find it had crashed, yet again. Sometimes, it worked fine. It was during these times when it worked fine that I would play Dizzy Egg.

There was more than one Dizzy Egg game, and I had to trawl through YouTube video walkthroughs to find the one I used to play, which appears to be the original Dizzy Egg game. The video below shows the game I used to play:

I hadn’t realised (until I beginning doing my research for this blog post), that the game was designed by two British brothers, Philip and Andrew Oliver. Apparently in 1986 an estimated 7% of all UK games sales were linked to Philip and Andrew Oliver, which is impressive when they were only 18 years old at the time.

It would be great if you could play Dizzy Egg on a modern console, like you can with Super Mario, so I’ll keep my fingers crossed that one day this happens! 🙂

National Vinyl Record Day

Today (12th August) is National Vinyl Record Day!

I am old enough to remember vinyl being the format for singles and albums, and not CDs. The first vinyl record I remember owning was “Kylie” by Kylie Minogue. The album was released in July 1988, and I received my copy for my 10th birthday in the November of that year.

Listening to songs with that little crackle noise was a thing of magic, and I loved how you could stack up a load of records and after each one had finished playing, the next record would drop down and start playing.

Singles I also owned around this time were:
Mike Reid – The Ugly Duckling (1975)
The Jungle Book Soundtrack – That’s What Friends Are For (The Vulture Song) (1967)
The Mary Poppins Soundtrack – Chim Chim Cher-ee (1964)
The Shangri-Las – Leader of the Pack (1964)

Quite an eclectic mix for a 10 year old! I think because my mum didn’t have much money, most of my singles were purchased at church jumble sales and car boot sales. I have such happy memories of listening to vinyl, and I don’t get the same whimsical feeling when I listen to crystal clear CDs.

I know that vinyl is still out there. I did a quick Google search and the below websites came up:

http://www.recordstore.co.uk/recordstore/Vinyl/
https://www.vinyltap.co.uk/
http://www.vinylexchange.co.uk/

and I even found a website called The Vinyl Factory that “is an independent British company that collaborates with musicians and artists to create ultra-premium handmade limited editions and accompanying exhibitions.”

I think I’m going to add ‘record player’ to my “lottery win list” because vinyl is still out there and I’d love to start buying vinyl again.

Song Of The Day: Julian Cope – World Shut Your Mouth

It’s Julian Cope’s birthday today (he’s 56!) and I have just listened to World Shut Your Mouth about 7 times on a loop. It’s one of my all time faves from 1986 when I was around 8 years old but already really into music (I had a cassette-playing boombox in my bedroom, get me!).

They were how old?????

I just left a comment on someone’s blog post about the ages of a couple of actors in Clueless where they were supposed to be playing youngsters and it inspired me to write this blog post. A lot of times actors are nowhere near the age they’re supposed to be playing, so how old were they really? (All ages are taken from Wikipedia).

Grease (1978)
Danny John Travolta was 24

Sandy Olivia Newton-John was 30
The T-Birds
Kenickie Jeff Conaway was 28

Doody Barry Pearl was 28
Sonny Michael Tucci was 32
Putzie Kelly Ward was 22
The Pink Ladies
Rizzo Stockard Channing was 34

Frenchy Didi Conn was 27
Jan Jamie Donnelly was 31
Marty Dinah Manoff was 20

Grease 2 (1982)
Michael Carrington/Cool Rider Maxwell Caulfield was 23

Stephanie Zinone Michelle Pfeiffer was 24
The T-Birds
Johnny Nogerelli Adrian Zmed was 28

Louis DiMucci Peter Frechette was 26
Goose McKenzie Christopher McDonald was 27
Davey Jaworski Leif Green age is unknown
The Pink Ladies
Paulette Rebchuck Lorna Luft was 30

Sharon Cooper Maureen Teefy was 29
Rhonda Ritter Alison Price age is unknown

Clueless (1995)
Cher Horowitz Alicia Silverstone was 19

Dionne Davenport Stacey Dash was 28
Tai Frasier Brittany Murphy was 18
Amber Mariens Elisa Donovan was 24
Christian Stovitz Justin Walker age is unknown
Murray Duvall Donald Faison was 21
Travis Birkenstock Breckin Meyer was 21
Elton Tiscia Jeremy Sisto was 21

The Breakfast Club (1985)
Andrew “Andy” Clark Emilio Estevez was 23

Brian Johnson Anthony Michael Hall was 17
John Bender Judd Nelson was 26
Claire Standish Molly Ringwald was 17
Allison Reynolds Ally Sheedy was 23

Mean Girls (2004)
Cady Heron Lindsay Lohan was 18

Regina George Rachel McAdams was 26
Janis Ian Lizzy Caplan was 22
Gretchen Wieners Lacey Chabert was 22
Karen Smith Amanda Seyfried was 19

American Pie (1999)
James “Jim” Levenstein Jason Biggs was 21

Chris “Oz” Ostreicher Chris Klein was 20
Kevin Myers Thomas Ian Nicholas was 19
Paul Finch Eddie Kaye Thomas was 19
Michelle Flaherty Alyson Hannigan was 25
Jessica Natasha Lyonne was 20
Victoria “Vicky” Lathum Tara Reid was 24
Steve Stifler Seann William Scott was 23
Heather Mena Suvari was 20
Nadia Shannon Elizabeth was 26

I was really surprised by so many of these!!

The genius that was The Big Breakfast (1992 – 2002)

Back in the 90s, the best way to start a week day was by switching on The Big Breakfast on Channel 4 and watching from 07:00 until 09:00 (if you were lucky enough to be off school/work). It was crazy, it was loud, but you felt like you were surrounded by your mates, and so you’d really start the day with a smile.

Below are some of my favourite TBB moments, because I know that there are people out there who haven’t heard of The Big Breakfast, mainly because I worked with one (who made me feel very old at that admission!).

Gary Barlow and Robbie Williams co-host with Gaby Roslin
I remember being VERY excited in February 1993 when a very young Gary (just 22) and Robbie (19, bless), along with the rest of Take That, co-hosted TBB. I used to VHS record every appearance of Take That that I could, so my collection was huge in the end. Enjoy if you’ve never seen them looking so cute!

 

More Tea Vicar?
Viewers were invited to call in and guess how many cups had been featured in a short clip. Whoever guessed the correct amount won a prize, a skiing holiday to Colorado no less in the clip below. Johnny would be dressed as a vicar, and Denise would be a put upon nun, who Johnny would regularly abuse.

 

The Friday Song
The Friday Song was at 8:55am each Friday, that most of us missed as we had gone to school or work, so you’d set the video recorder (remember them?) before you left the house. The verses would be topical and the chorus would be a rousing sing-a-long. In the clip below, you also get to see the legend that is Phil Gayle who was the newsreader on TBB from 1996 to 2000, including a news item that “The International Festival of Chocolate kicks off later…” What? Is it still going? *heads to Google* Yes, there is one this year, good to know… (see my new upcoming post, “The Chocolate Festival” lol).

 

The last ever Friday Song with Johnny and Denise
The saddest day for Johnny/Denise fans, the end of their presenting TBB and the last ever Friday Song on 12th January 2001 😦

1994 baby!

While I’ve been online, feeling sorry for myself with this stupid poorliness, I have been having a retro flashback on YouTube, so here are my favourites that made the Top 10 in 1994: a year when I turned 16, the possibilities seemed endless and the summer was actually hot 😀

D:Ream – Things Can Only Get Better
I was lucky enough to see D:Ream live in Leeds back in the day and it was an amazing gig.

 

Take That – Everything Changes
I have been a massive fan of Take That since I was 12 in 1991 and my local radio station, Radio Aire, ran a competition to win a signed 7″ vinyl single of “Do What U Like” and I won. One of my biggest regrets is that I have no idea where the signed single is now. Kids – take care of your stuff! Robbie was always my favourite, with his cheeky chappy ways, so this is one of my favourite Take That videos.

Bad Boys Inc – More To This World
Bad Boys Inc were another cute boy band around in the mid-90s, giving us girls even more eye candy on the front covers of Smash Hits, Big, Just Seventeen, Mizz or More! magazines.

 

Let Loose – Crazy For You
I remember seeing Let Loose live at Party In The Park in Leeds in 1994 and the crowd went mad for them. As we were leaving the venue, they drove past us on the road and waved to us from the back of their van. I have been telling anyone that story as soon as Let Loose is mentioned for years as it was one of the biggest moments of my teens! The song hasn’t aged a day and it’ll always be a classic for many people of my generation 😀

 

PJ & Duncan AKA – Let’s Get Ready To Rhumble
No cheesy 1994 list would be complete without a bit of PJ & Duncan from back in the day. I loved Byker Grove and felt genuinely sad when PJ was blinded in that infamous paintballing incident. This is a classic video, but nowhere as cheesy as “Eternal Love”…

 

Zig & Zag – Them Girls
I’ve worked with someone who genuinely had no clue as to who Zig & Zag are. They also didn’t know who Robson & Jerome are or what The Big Breakfast was so that was a fun conversation which made me feel like I was about 100! The Big Breakfast was a lovely way to wake up on a morning, as when you switched your TV on, you felt like you were being entertained by your mates as Johnny Vaughan and Denise Van Outen (my preferred pairing) were really inclusive to you as a viewer whereas some (shall remain nameless) shows make you feel like they’re having a secret laugh behind your back, but through the camera lens, AND getting paid for it! Zig & Zag were excellent interviewers, asking such in-depth questions as “who was the first boy you ever kissed?” (to Pamela Anderson), and commenting to Michael Parkinson, “You’ve got hairs in your ears, Mr. Parkinson” (Zig). I may actually go and do a The Big Breakfast post now, as it rocked!