Totally Rad Pop Culture Items from My Childhood That I Wish I Still Had

Life is full of regrets, everyone knows that.  The following are my life’s biggest.

bsc1) Babysitters Club T-Shirt – This was so rare and awesome that even the internet couldn’t help me find it again.  Back in 1994, little Ellen loved her Scholastic book order catalogs.  Many of them featured a special offer at the back where you could join the Baby-Sitters Club Fan Club.  So exclusive.  So VIP.  I begged my mom for months and finally, she caved.  Among the membership benefits was the coolest t-shirt you have ever seen.  It was bright and colorful with hip phrases like “Best Friends Forever” and “Mary-Ann + Logan”, but worst of all, it was big enough on me back then that I could still totally rock it to this day.  Sigh.  This one hurts the most.

Dtv_romancin2) DTV Romancin’ VHS Recording – Back in the late 80s to early 90s, Disney Channel tried to cash in on the MTV cash cow and make music videos to popular songs using clips from their cartoons.  These music videos would often appear between their cartoons and sometimes they would air specials.  My favorite of these specials was DTV Romancin’ (also aired as DTV Valentines).  It had Chip and Dale dancing to Madonna, the cast of Bambi wooing to Lionel Richie’s “Hello”, and just about every clip of a phone from a Disney cartoon played with “I Just Called to Say I Love You”.  Needless to say, I wore this VHS out.

902103) 90210 Blow Dryer – I was far too young to care about this 90210 blow dryer, but I felt like the coolest 1st grader on the black when I would (attempt to) blow dry my hair with this beauty.  It doesn’t matter that it wasn’t a very good blow dryer, it only mattered that it was aqua green and purple and was emblazoned with that zip code.  In my head, it was the blow dryer that Kelly, Brenda, and Donna used.

full house4) Full House Michelle Scrapbook – Have you ever wanted to look at pictures of episodes of Full House?  Then have I got the book for you!  This book has it all.  Michelle gives all the dirt, like how Uncle Joey is so silly!  And how Uncle Jesse is so cool!  Did you know that DJ loves Steve?  Or that Stephanie thinks you are so “rude”?  (Mainly I wish I still had this one so that I could marvel at how obsessed I was with this stupid book).

beauty5) Handheld Beauty and the Beast Game – I blame this game for making me so easily addicted to games on my iPhone.  I was never great at your Nintendos and your Playstations, but even I could handle three buttons.  Dodge left, dodge right, and of course, “MAGIC”!  The premise was pretty basic, because those three buttons won’t allow for much.  At first you hide from the beast, but then you kiss him and then you hide from Gaston so that you can get to the beast and kiss him and finally, you escape the mob led by Gaston so that you can get to the beast and kiss him so that he becomes the “handsome” prince.  It’s a wonder that I ended up with even a shred of feminist sensibilities.

$T2eC16J,!)sE9swm(vm4BS!TdnQu5w~~60_356) Spice Girls Pin – When I was in fifth grade, one of my friends got this set of five pins that spelled out SPICE.  We divvied up the pins, each girl getting the pin with the Spice Girl that they most embodied.  See that “P” with Ginger? That was all mine.  Somehow, as a 10 year old, I was Ginger Spice.  Probably because I had the closest thing resembling red hair, was terrible at sports, and hated Posh.

little mermaid7) Little Mermaid Sheets – At the age of 3, I was so hard core about The Little Mermaid that it was a bit ridiculous.  I had the entire soundtrack memorized before I had seen the movie.  When I finally DID see the movie, I stood on my seat and sang along with the whole thing.  I mainly wish that I still had these sheets because I still have a twin bed and would SO sleep on these bad boys.

giga8) 101 Dalmatians Giga Pet – I was very explicit with Santa.  I am a Giga Pet girl and NOT a Tamagotchi girl.  Also, don’t even think about getting me a cat.  Apparently, this led Santa to a 101 Dalmatians Giga Pet because it was the same Christmas that the live action movie came out, and I was more than happy to receive my little demanding dalmatian.

photo9) Minnie paraphernalia – This girl had a lot of Minnie Mouse paraphernalia.  It is unclear as to whether this was due to an obsession on my part or on my mother’s part, who was buying all of it.  Either way, I loved Minnie Mouse and demanded to see her almost immediately upon my first arrival at Disneyland.  The item I most wish I still had that I cannot find is this tubular neon school folder, but I am pretty sure I wore it to tatters.

disney afternoon10) Disney Afternoon soundtrack tape – I loved Disney afternoon, but what kid in the early 90s with Disney Channel didn’t?  And almost more than the cartoons themselves, I loved the theme songs, mainly because of this cassette tape.  I may or may not have most of these downloaded to my iTunes.  And I may or may not bust them out on a regular basis.  And I may or may not be able to still do the breakdown on the Tale Spin theme song.  “Spin it, let’s begin it, bear and grin it when you’re in it, you can win it in a minute when you spin it, spin it, spin it. So spin it.  Tale Spin!”

What item from your childhood are you most upset that your mom talked you into throwing out?

Ellen

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Mixin’ It Up: March’s Playlist

Boy_-_Mutual_FriendsThese posts take me a while to write, so let’s skip the chit chat and get to it.

Little Numbers”  BOY – This is my number one pick that I’m pushing this month because I want more people to be as obsessed with this song as I am.  I just saw them them in concert this past Friday and they were so adorably genuine and just plum excited to be singing their songs for people.  Not to mention, the song is dang catchy.  I dare you listen and not start bopping your head or humming along by the last chorus.

Heartbreaker”  Alabama Shakes – Last month began my love affair with Alabama Shakes.  I may be a little behind, but I have certainly made up for lost time over the past few weeks.  I love the Brittany’s voice and the sort of old school soul and garage band rock melding that they have going on.  Rather than recommend their two main tracks (“Hold On” and “Boys and Girls”, both of which I LOVE), I thought I would recommend the B-side-ish tracks that I really like.  “Heartbreaker” has all the possible passion that could fit into one song.

Breakin’ Up”  Rilo Kiley – I had to include a Rilo Kiley song in this month’s mix because I am so excited for their new album that is coming out next month.  Like, beyond excited.  This is mainly due to the fact that they have not come out with a new album since 2007!  “Breakin’ Up” is a little more peppy than what I am expecting from their new album, but that doesn’t make me love it any less.   (The video I linked is this goofy, homemade video, but their dancing amuses me).

White Nights”  Oh Land – While I don’t think I will ever be able to endorse Girls, I can safely say that I fully endorse the Girls soundtrack.  It has given me a few price gems, such as “White Nights” from this band I have never heard of.  It’s great.  Thanks for this, Girls, but stay away from Parks and Recreation Emmy awards.

Velvet Elvis”  Alex Winston – While driving to the aforementioned concert this past weekend, my friend played this odd little song for me.  It is about a girl who is in love with a velvet portrait of Elvis.  I know what you’re thinking.  “Another Velvet Elvis song?”  But this was the earworm that would not leave after I listened to it, so I proceeded to buy and listen to it for three days, as you do with earworms.  Which brings us to present day, where I am still listening to it on repeat.

SLPGirl from the North Country”  Bob Dylan & Johnny Cash– I’ve always been a mix girl rather than an album girl.  I am often made fun of for my eclectic mixes, but variety is the spice of life.  I think this is why I have always loved soundtracks.  They are mix CDs made by your favorite filmmakers and the songs have little music videos in your favorite movies.  Over the course of my three viewings of Silver Linings Playbook, this song has endeared itself to me.  Believe me, no one is more surprised than me to have two Bob Dylan songs in two months’ mixes, but it happened.

Say You’ll Be There”  Spice Girls – I was recently discussing the value of Spice Girls with a friend of mine and I’m just going to come out and say it:  I STILL love the Spice Girls.  I bust out my Spice Girls albums on the regular.  They are just a plain ol’ good time and I am not going to hide in shame, so if you are in the LA area and you see a girl blasting this song in her car with reckless abandon, you’ll know who it is.

Temptation”  New Order – I have encountered New Order a few time on my hipster movie soundtracks and have come to the conclusion that I love New Order.  Any time they are on a mix or soundtrack, that song is always my favorite song on the CD.  When I got the Perks of Being a Wallflower (I haven’t seen it, but why wouldn’t I usually like the soundtracks of hipsterific movies set in the 80s) soundtrack and saw that there was a New Order song, I knew that I was a goner.  Sure enough, I love “Temptation”.

Skin”  BOY – Another sampling from BOY.  I had to include this song and link a video that someone took from the show that I went to because while I like the original recording of this song, I really loved the stripped down, melancholy version that they do live.  Now I can only wish that they will release this version somewhere so that I can download it and have it as my own.

Always Alright”  Alabama Shakes – Another Alabama Shakes song, also featured on Silver Linings Playbook, because I just can’t get enough.  Seriously, watch the linked video and answer me this:  How cool is she?  I love her.

Ellen