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Posts tagged ‘Entertainment’

Movie Quote Monday – Christmas Vacation

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Clark: Ellen! I want to have Christmas here in our house. It means a lot to me. All my life I’ve wanted to have a big family Christmas.
Ellen: It’s just that I know how you build things up in your mind, Sparky. You set standards that no family event can ever live up to.
Clark: When have I ever done that?

One of the things I loved as a kid was big family Christmases. We had Christmas Eve with my Mom’s side at our house, and at my grandparent’s house, there was always a huge gathering of family from my Dad’s side the weekend before or after. At times I’ve really mourned the loss of those. But in each case, the nuclear family switched at some point, from grandma and grandpa with their kids and grandchildren, to the new families being made. The grandkids were grown and having kids of their own, with their own time constraints and needs. Their own traditions. 

For me, as a single person without kids, it’s a little different. I don’t really have a family tradition anymore, because it’s just me. And that can be a little sad sometimes – and in part it’s that loss of tradition that I’ve grieved for. But then I’m kind of a hermit, so mostly it’s all good. I get to go somewhere else, watch some presents get opened, eat, and then go home to my blessed quiet. But I do miss the excitement of seeing my extended family on those big family Christmases. And in my heart, that’s the image I cling to of what Christmas should be.

If you’ve ever seen Christmas Vacation, then you know that Clark’s hopes and dreams of what the holiday should be, well, they don’t pan out. His plans all go wrong, burn down, and pile up, one on top of the other, like the growing heap of ruined stuff he has to keep tossing out to the curb. Poor Clark.

But don’t worry about him, because if he’s anything, it’s hopeful. Maybe it does all fall down around his head, but in the end, so what? Maybe it’s not about what we want to get, but what we do get. Making the most out of that. No, making the best out of that.

Believing the best. Even when Christmas doesn’t deliver what we dreamed it would.

 If Clark taught me anything, that would be it.

Merry Christmas, Sparky.

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A Year in the 80’s – 1982 No. 1’s

A Quick Look Back

Population: 231,664,458
Life expectancy: 74.5
New Home: $69,300
New Car: $7,983
Median Income: $14,531
Stamp: $ .20
Regular Gas: $1.19
Bread: $ .60
Gal of Milk: $1.79

And here are the Number One’s for 1982!

Movies

Oscars
Best Picture: Gandhi
Best Director: Richard Attenborough, Gandhi
Best Actor: Ben Kingsley, Gandhi
Best Actress: Meryl Streep, Sophie’s Choice

Highest Grossing Films
1. E.T: The Extra-Terrestrial ($359,197,037
2.  Tootsie ($177,200,000)
3.  An Officer and a Gentleman ($129,795,554)
4. Rocky III (124,146,897)
5. Porky’s ($105,492,483)

Remember These Movies?
Diner
The Year of Living Dangerously
Annie
Cannery Row
The Secret of NIMH
An Officer and a Gentleman
The World According to Garp
First Blood
Victor/Victoria
Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid

Music

Grammy Awards:
Album of the Year:  John Lennon & Yoko Ono for Double Fantasy
Record of the Year: Kim Carnes for Bette Davis Eyes
Best New Artist:  Sheena Easton

Pop Female Vocal:  Lena Horne for The Lady and Her Music
Pop Male Vocal:  Al Jarreau for Breakin’ Away
Pop Duo/Group: The Manhattan Transfer for The Boy from New York City

Rock Female Vocal: Pat Benatar for Fire and Ice
Rock Male Vocal: Rick Springfield for Jessie’s Girl
Rock Duo/Group: The Police for Don’t Stand So Close To Me

Country Female Vocal: Dolly Parton for 9 to 5
Country Male Vocal: Ronnie Milsap for (There’s) No Gettin’ Over Me
Country Duo/Group: The Oak Ridge Boys for Elvira

Billboard Top Singles
1. Physical – Olivia Newton-John
2. Eye of the Tiger – Survivor
3. I Love Rock ‘n Roll – Joan Jett and the Blackhearts
4. Ebony and Ivory – Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder
5.  Centerfold – The J. Geils Band

Remember These Songs?
Don’t You Want Me  by The Human League
Shake It Up by The Cars
Eye in the Sky by The Alan Parsons Project
Heat of the Moment by Asia
Love’s Been a Little Bit Hard on Me by Juice Newton
Caught Up in You by .38 Special
Any Day Now by Ronnie Milsap
Crimson and Clover by Joan Jett and The Blackhearts
Waiting on a Friend by The Rolling Stones
Somebody’s Baby by Jackson Browne

Television

Emmy Awards
Outstanding Drama: Hill Street Blues, (NBC)
Best Actor, Drama: Daniel J. Travanti as Captain Frank Furillo, Hill Street Blues (NBC)
Best Actress, Drama: Michael Learned as Mary Benjamin, Nurse (CBS)

Outstanding Comedy: Barney Miller, (ABC)
Best Actor, Comedy: Alan Alda as Hawkeye Pierce, M*A*S*H (CBS)
Best Actress, Comedy: Carol Kane as Simka Dahblitz, Taxi (ABC)

Top Shows
1982 – 1983    (Households with TV: 83,300,000)

1. 60 Minutes (CBS) 21,241,500
2. Dallas (CBS) 20,491,800
3. M*A*S*H (CBS) 18,825,800
4. Magnum, P.I. (CBS) 18,825,800
5. Dynasty (ABC) 18,659,200
6. Three’s Company (ABC) 17,659,600
7. Simon & Simon (CBS) 17,493,000
8. Falcon Crest (CBS) 17,243,100
9. The Love Boat (ABC) 16,909,900
10. The A-Team (NBC) 16,743,300

Remember These Shows?
Square Pegs (82 – 83)
Joanie Loves Chachi (82 – 83)
Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (82 – 83)
The New Odd Couple (82 – 83)
T. J. Hooker (82 – 86)
Knight Rider (82 – 86)
Silver Spoons (82 – 87)
Remington Steele (82 – 87)
Fame (82 – 87)
St. Elsewhere (82 – 88)
Nine to Five (82 – 88)
Newhart (82 – 90)

What else do you remember from 1982?

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References:
Music Outfitters
The Cost of Living
1980’s Flashback
In the 80’s
Classic TV Hits

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A Year in the 80’s – I Want My MTV

When I was about 14, my whole family got together to celebrate my grandparent’s 50th wedding anniversary. Music was playing while we decorated the hall, and somehow my cousin and I got to naming the songs as they came on the radio. I guess she’s about 10 years older than me, and she knew a lot of them. But it’s one of those silly memories that has stuck with me, that she was so impressed because I knew every. single. one. Title, artist, album…and most of the words too.

It was only because I stayed up half the nights most weekends watching music videos. First it was Friday Night Videos – remember that? – and then it was all MTV, when it finally came to my neck of the woods.

I was the MTV Generation.

MTV ain’t what it used to be, but then neither am I for that matter. Of course, I don’t guess either one of us would have benefited from staying the same all these years. But I can still keep a place in my heart for those late nights, sitting in the good chair, one leg kicked over the arm, watching 3-minute movies set to music.

Here are some of the videos I remember most, and you might remember too:

The Buggles, Video Killed the Radio Star, 1981
This is the first video played on MTV when it debuted at 12:01 am, August 1st 1981.

 

Duran Duran, Hungry Like the Wolf, 1983
Duran Duran probably owes their US success to MTV, which put this video on heavy rotation at a time when the band was not getting radio air play. They became known for their highly stylized music videos and exotic locals, and in 1984 this video won the first Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video.

 

Wham!, Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go, 1984
“You put the boom-boom into my heart.” If this song doesn’t take you back to the 80’s I don’t know what will. It’s still catchy – you know you remember most of the words. And neon everywhere!! Love those fingerless gloves there, Michael.

 

The Cars, You Might Think, 1984
This was one of the first music videos to use computer graphics, and maybe that’s why it made an impression on my brain. Even though it seems pretty simple and rudimentary now. It won Video of the Year at the first ever MTV Video Music Awards, and five awards at Billboard’s 1984 Video Music Awards.

 

Twisted Sister, We’re Not Gonna Take It, 1984
“WHAT is that? A Twisted Sister pin! On your uniform!”

 

A-ha, Take On Me, 1985
I always liked this awesome video, and I’ll probably never forget it exists. Well, maybe some day I’ll forget. Anyway, it was cutting edge at the time, and made this song A-ha’s most successful recording in the US.

 

Dire Straits, Money for Nothing, 1985
Considered ground-breaking at the time, this video was one of the first uses of computer-animated human characters. Ironically, Dire Straits founder/lead singer Mark Knopfler was anti-video and thought that videos “would destroy the purity of songwriters and performers”. But MTV loved the song and wanted a concept video or they wouldn’t play it. Knopfler eventually gave in, and the video went on to win Video of the Year at the third annual MTV Video Music Awards.

 

Robert Palmer, Addicted to Love, 1986
Remember these girls? This video was ranked number 3 on VH1’s Top 20 Videos of the 1980s; pretty memorable video for such a simple concept. Palmer went on to copy the idea in three subsequent music videos as well. I guess if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

 

Michael Jackson, Thriller, 1983
I’m out of order, but sometimes you’ve got to save the best for last. Directed by John Landis, this 13 minute video was MTV’s first “world premier video”. It’s hard to exagerate its influence on the music video industry, not to mention how many times the Thriller dance shows up in movies and television. In 2006, Guinness World Records listed Thriller as the “most successful music video”, with over nine million copies sold. And in 2009, it was the first music video to ever be inducted into the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress. Pretty impressive.

 

So that’s just a few of the videos that stick out in my memory.

What about you?

Were you a part of the original MTV Generation?

What was your favorite music video of the 1980’s?

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A Year in the 80’s – Hair

When I think 80’s, I instantly think big hair. Big bangs, big perms, big sweeps of hair poking out at the sides of the face like mighty wings.

I could never get the bang thing down, but I did have my share of perms. And I just loved my beautifully feathered hair when I was sixteen.

I had a rat tail at one point too, more’s the pitty. But I never did a side pony! So I’ve got that going for me.

Here are some photos of 80’s hair. Take a walk down memory lane – or maybe have a laugh at the expense of me and my fellow 80’s alumni. Either way, enjoy!

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Did you have the typical big 80’s hair? That is, if you had hair in the 80’s.

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