The 80s Thread - Do a lot of coke and vote for Ronald Reagan!

Inspired by @Johnny_Unusual’s The 90s Thread, I invite you to reflect on your childhood, adolescence, or for our treasured seniors, adulthood in the 1980’s.

What color what your Trapper Keeper? Do you know how to phone home? Did you get lost in a maze of twisty passages, all alike? You can dance if you want to, and you can relive your glory days here.


It was red, though it may not have been an actual Trapper Keeper

Please. Everyone who was a kid in the 80s knew their home phone number almost as soon as they knew the alphabet. And it didn’t involve a Speak And Spell.

I remember being repeatedly quizzed on my phone number and address by multiple different adults in my life - at home and at school.


Pretty sure my Trapper Keeper had a unicorn on it.

Mostly because at least half the stuff I owned in the 80’s had a unicorn on it.

Oh, and my Members OnlyTM jacket was purple.


I showed up to the first day of 5th grade with a nice new Trapper Keeper in my bag. Then our teacher told us that she did not allow them in her class because she believed that they made people less organized.
She was not a nice…person.


Call your cable company and tell them, “I want my MTV!”


My Trapper Keeper looked like this, by the way.


My parents drilled my home phone number into my head from an early age back in those days.

I remember the television stations back in those days. Before Fox came along in 1986, it was just CBS, NBC, ABC and PBS plus various independent stations. In New York City, we had WPIX 11 and WNEW 5; the latter was owned by Metromedia before Fox took it over.

I remember when we got cable television; that was BIG for us to have more channels. I had Nickelodeon with all its fun programming like Finders Keepers, Double Dare, You Can’t Do That on Television, Maple Town, the Mysterious Cities of Gold, Pinwheel and more. We also had HBO! In those days, HBO was premium; you had to pay extra on top of your cable bill to get that.

We had access to movies as well as more youth-oriented programming for me like Fraggle Rock. Plus I got to see reruns of animated television specials, animated movies and iconic 80s films like the Neverending Story. I remember watching that with my father years ago.

I can never forget the iconic “HBO in Space” logo. That was done with traditional film techniques - no CGI here! That HBO in Space was an actual model.


I graduated high school in 1980.


5th grade teachers are a scourge upon humanity. Mine was an ogre.


Getting 5.25% interest on my savings account and nearly 9% on an EE savings bond.


I never had a Trapper Keeper. Too expensive. I always wanted one, though.

We had 3, sometimes 4 TV stations on clear days.


“I know my number my telephone number!”


Oof, this is hard because the 80s open on so much pain and sorrow and disaster… my little sister passed away at the beginning of 1980, which I can’t even describe what that was like - and then my musical idol, John Lennon was murdered at the end.

In between those terrible days, a natural disaster - Mount St. Helen’s erupted, I remember walking home from 7-11 and noticed the dark skies, and a big cloud, I was thinking a storm was coming and I’d better get home, moments later, a thick ash fell and coated streets and houses.

Gratefully, there were good memories as well…

  • The 86 Mets

  • The David Letterman Show

  • Robo-Cop

  • MTV was launched

  • Billy Idol’s Rebel Yell was one of my favorite songs/albums

  • I saw Devo and Alice Cooper in concert

  • Frank Miller’s Daredevil, Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing + First Comics hits the scene with some great indies

  • TV? St. Elsewhere, Cheers, The Golden Girls, The Cosby Show, Family Ties, Newhart. SCTV is shown in the States. Red Dwarf and The Wonder Years began, and my first must-watch TV show M-A-S-H, came to a close - and while it wasn’t what it used to be (after Radar left) that final episode left a lump in my throat.

  • Movies… too many to name, but I have a list and decade overview here…


I was born in 1981, so I only remember the mid-to-late '80s (and even the mid-'80s are fuzzy for me). My parents had cable pretty early on, so I remember my babysitters watching MTV whenever they were over.

I remember there being a lot of anti-drug propaganda at my elementary school. Stranger danger was also a huge thing.

I definitely had a Trapper Keeper, though I don’t remember what it looked like.

Saturday morning cartoons were big. I remember really enjoying Muppet Babies, in particular.


I graduated from high school in '83 and proceeded to go walkabout for much of the rest of the decade. Somewhere in there I earned a degree. I managed to avoid alcohol and coke habits, which were fashionable, by being broke. I didn’t have a trapper keeper. We wore suit jackets and very skinny ties with our rattiest jeans and Nike Bruins. I missed much of the 80s TV, to this day I’ve only seen a couple episodes of Cheers.


Born in October 80 and my earliest memory of music is probably late 82/early 83. My parents either had MTV on or Fraggle Rock on when I was around. I remember being 3 going on 4 and Boderline and When Doves Cry just would not stop playing every hour. That’s how big Madge and the purple one were. Didn’t see my first movie until 1985 which was Care Bears and Cocoon in the same year.

It wasn’t until I was 8 when I heard the first big story in the news which was the 88 election. Same coke, new (kind of) president. Loved Muppets as well but I was all about Garfield and Camp Candy.


I think my first movie was the re-release of Sleeping Beauty. I also remember seeing An American Tail and Follow That Bird, among others. I had a hard time with Follow That Bird because Big Bird was blue and sad.


I absolutely did, and I love that you included this here. The dusty farmhouse above it was like a second home to me.

Wow, I’m so sorry to hear about your sister. That’s awful. I remember Mount St. Helens as well. We lived in the midwest, hundreds of miles away, and ash fell on us too. Because we were so rural we never got cable, but we eventually got satellite, back before they “scrambled” it, so we had tons of stuff to watch.

I think name-brand Trapper Keepers were too rich for our blood, but I had some knock-off ones. I recall the USSR loomed large in classes and on world maps.


Well, I escaped the public school system in 1984. Still recovering from that, but I guess it’s something.

I finished college in 1990, due to having to re-do Junior year after transferring from the East Coast to the West.

A whole lot of changes to pack into just 10 years. I should probably write a terrible novel and then be highly offended when no one wants to read it. :smiley:


That sounds like a lot of work. You should just skip straight to being offended.