Friday, May 05, 2006

Ode to the late 80s/early 90s

(Toya, thanks for the inspiration!)
This will be one of those long emails that will be divided up by sub-sections!

Bobby & Whitney
You know, one day I realized, RIGHT up until they got married, I used to love both Bobby Brown and Whitney Houston! Well, actually, I really liked Whitney up until "The Bodyguard". When she started winning all those awards, I felt like she got too arrogant and I didn't like it at all! Now, Bobby, WHOO, I used to LOVE him! In fact, a radio station was playing a bunch of his songs back-to-back and I was jamming as if it were 1989 or so, again! (Sheesh, I was YOUNG--about 10! This really concerns me, especially when I think about my strong love for songs like "Rock Wit'cha" and "Roni"!) I thought Bobby Brown was the MAN, with that Gumby haircut and his dancing. I was head over heels for him!! And I used to feel especially proud to know every word to all of his songs! I thought it made me a hardcore fan!

Dancing in the 80s and 90s
I thought I was the best dancer alive when I was younger! LOL! It's quite true. I was shy but when I did dance, I used to kill it! (at least in my opinion!) A few of my favorite dances:
  • the snake: I used to be able to go "all the way down" and then "back up".
  • the wop: another favorite! Because it was actually quite versatile. I mean, two hands, one hand, what more could you ask for?
  • the Roger Rabbit: enough said
  • the Running Man: this was one of those that I thought anyone could do--so it wasn't as impressive, but I still used to like it
  • the Cabbage Patch: this was SO hardcore when it first came out, but then it got played out and I was over it!
  • last but not least, I used to LOVE to Vogue! Madonna was THE woman back then and I used to be proud to know all the words to the song--you know, when I was younger, knowing all the words to a popular song was a BIG deal in my world! But even more than that, I used to love the dance to the song!

My 80s/90s wish list
Ok, so I think I dress pretty well now. In fact, I'm pretty cute most days, even sexy occasionally! But in the 80s and 90s, it was NOT going down for me! There were SO many things that I wanted that we just couldn't afford--or my mother was just like, you are 11, GET OVER IT! Let's travel back in time as I compile a list of some of the things I used to want to wear/own!
  • a pair of colorful high-top Reebok tennis shoes (Just looked them up, the style is called Freestyle). I wanted the purple--light purple or dark purple, didn't matter--or sky blue ones. I wasn't a big fan of the red ones! I got a black pair, and a white pair in the summer, and had to just deal!
  • a pair of purple and white Travel Fox tennis shoes--and it completely pissed me off that a girl I wasn't too fond of got a pair! UGH! I was hatin'!
  • a pair of L.A. Gear tennis shoes--and I had the opportunity to get them, but I was being dumb and finicky, so after visiting about the 3rd or 4th shoe store in the mall, my mom said "pick a pair NOW or you get NOTHING". So I ended up with a pink & white pair of British Knights (with 2 pairs of shoe strings...one was white and the other was pink with silver glitter!) . I was PISSED about those BKs because I'd really wanted the L.A. Gears! LOL! Like do they even MAKE those anymore? (Funny thing is, when I wanted ALL of these tennis shoes, I was attending private school and I couldn't wear this kind of stuff on regular days anyway! We only had about 5 "wear your own clothes" days a school year!)
  • a pair of jeans with either suede or leather, and graffiti on them--this was 7th or 8th grade. I really wanted a pair and my mom was basically like, "Don't even ask!".
  • a pair of leg warmers to wear as fashion and not as actual leg warmers. I had a navy blue pair because, again, I went to private school and we had a certain uniform and in the winter I'd bust out my blue navy leg warmers because it was FREEZING out. But when I'd ask to wear them outside of school and just to be like the fashionable girls, my mom would again just shut me down!
  • Rider boots! wanted them more than anything in life! I didn't own any boots, outside of RAIN boots, until I was in, like, college!

"Best Dressed" award

This is a list of my favorite wardrobe pieces and/or fashion trends of the 80s/90s.

  • a black & white skirt w/short leggings--oh YES, they were attached. The skirt was black with white polka dots and the short leggings were black with white stripes. The skirt was about mid-thigh and the leggings came to my knee. It was absolutely my favorite thing to wear!!! But polka dots and stripes? Yet, you couldn't tell me I wasn't fly!!
  • (Toya, I feel you on this one) stacked socks--I thought this was one of the best fashion trends to hit the Baltimore streets! In case you are like, "what?" what you did was get a BUNCH of slouch socks of different colors and wore them simultaneously, to match whatever you were wearing..and I used to wear them alternately! Oh my gosh, I thought I was SLATED for the runways when I used to do that. In fact, on one our 5 or so "wear your own clothes" days, I remember wearing my black & white skirt w/short leggings and some black and white socks, completed by black Freestyle Reeboks. I thought I was hot ISH! On one leg I had on a white sock, then a black sock, then the tennis shoe. On the other leg, I had a black sock, then a white sock, then the tennis shoe! And I walked around my school like I was Beverly Johnson! I was clueless when I was younger, not really aware when it came to race and things, so as one of the only 6 or so Black girls in 6th grade, I thought it was my JOB to make "hip" and "trendy" all the other girls in the middle school. In fact, our entire crew did--we felt like no one else was on our level. I remember one of my friends wearing a pair of purple Freestyles and another friend wearing some Rider boots and I had on my stacked socks! Honey, we were like "y'all can't do it like this!" LOL!
  • a teal green pants thing...the only thing I can compare it to, now that I think about it, is those Dickies jumpsuits that people were wearing a couple of years ago, but it was dressier! (I just went into a fit of laughter over how ridiculous that sounds! But it's so accurate, sadly!) I only wore it a couple of times..and I think the thing closed with SNAPS, but I thought it was so cute!
  • a blue w/purple splashes shorts jumper (or overalls, whatever)--this was so cute to me, and I used to wear it with a STRIPED shirt (like the stripes were NOWHERE near purple or blue, but I thought it was the BOMB together! Hey, it looked good on the mannequin) and I wore one strap down--until my mother told me to pull it back up! She thought it wasn't cute, especially because I was a girl!
  • a pair of STRAIGHT LEG jeans with heart cut-outs on the ankle (and the "holes" were patched with lace) I thought I was a sex kitten in those things...they were SO itchy but I was TOO cute wearing them, with a fuchsia--the color of the 90s--tank top! This was my "sexy girl" outfit for 7th grade.
  • a pair of purple and white Fila high-top tennis with the velcro strap that went around them, that you left hanging...this was the first "expensive" pair of tennis shoes I ever owned. I think they were like $50. I had a pair and my brother got a baby blue pair and my mom was like "next Easter, LOVE is what you're getting"!

I didn't even mention movies, TV shows, or other teen idols so that's for another time! Oh, the 80s and 90s, most of the time I was SO wack but life was so stressfree--probably because I was under driving license age for most of the time! I wonder if I'll look back at the beginning of the new millenium like 15 years from now and think that I was the wackest 20something-year-old alive! Only time will tell!

6 comments:

PhillyPhile said...

Whoo you took me back. I had to look up Travel Fox becaues I couldn't remember them. Do you all remeber that MC Hammer did commercials for British Kinght and Paula Abdul did them for LA Gear

Toya said...

Girl, good LORD! I actually remember some of those clothing choices! We were cute, weren't we???

PhillyPhile said...

We also forgot the Baltimore trend of stretch pants. Girls used to wear these with oversized tea shirt. The pant must have been very inexpensive because every girl I knew had quite a few pair. They came in all types of colors. Little did the women know that it made many of them look like upside down pares Wider and the top because of the baggy T and bottoming out at slender ankles.

This must have been a very late 90’s trend because I seem to recall Tonyette still wearing hers at UMES. But you looked HOT in yours. Perhaps you should bring them back in style.

Tonyette said...

Yes, Toya, we were TOO cute! LOL! Oh and Donté I did forget about the Baltimore stretch pants phenomenon!! I was THE BOMB in them! I had a beige pair with butterflies all over! And yeah, they were like $10! LOL! But don't act like I wore them to class or anything! Please! I mean, I think it was only when I was chilling, RIGHT?

Toya said...

I *did* still wear them freshman year of college - 1995/96. In fact, I got into a fraternity party for free that way. It was called the "Nice and Tight Jam" and any girl who wore spandex/stretch pants got in for free. You *know* I was sporting the purple stretch pants!

PhillyPhile said...

Tonyette, I don’t know if you wore them to class.

LOL. Toya, OK for the Nice and Tight party. That sounds like something the Que’s must has thrown.