A Look Back At The 80s: Hook Style!


#1.  Someone in the hotel ordered an 18-year-old Wednesday Addams look-alike hooker at 6:30 a.m. this morning.

(She left – sans smile and dignity – by 7:21 a.m.)

Talk about your breakfast of champions.

#2.  Bus bags (luggage belonging to a bus tour that I am responsible for delivering) have become heavier in the fifteen years since I started this gig.

It’s a scientific fact. Someone really needs to look into that….


I was a teenager in the 1980s.

That’s all you need to know.


1)  New Coke,

2)  That hair. (WTF?)

3)  High school dances where someone sells one of my friends a bag of oregano, I mean, weed.

4)  Dry humping.

5) Begging for dry humping.

6)  Who’s the Boss?  (I mean, I’ll watch the XXX version, but otherwisefugedaboutit!)

7)  Ridiculously cheesy 80s porn.  (Not to mention that other crazy hair.)

8)  The fact that I couldn’t fight.

9)  The fact that I had to fight.

10)  People that thought Russia was still a threat.  (They had no idea what was coming.)

11)  Weird Science.  (It teased us with the promise of sexy shenanigans, but failed to deliver.)

12)  Most of my dates in that era.  (They too promised sexy shenanigans but failed to deliver.)

13)  Duran Duran.  (I’m sure they were nice guys, but watching girls spontaneously combust at the mere mention of their names got annoying.)

14)  Rubik’s Cubes.  (Forget blue balls, these things were frustrating as hell!)

15)  A-ha.  (That video was cool for the time, but the tune? Not so much?)

16)  David Lynch.  (If I wanted to take acid, I’d take acid!)

17)  The softcore porn Jumbo Video tried to pass off as the real thing.  (It may have been cheesy but at least show me all the naughty bits.)

18)  The beginning of the AIDS pandemic and the hysteria that followed.

19)  Crazy-ass catchphrases I refuse to repeat here.

20)  Growing Pains.  (More like viewing pains.)


1)  Ginger Lynn.  (I have a love/hate relationship with the adult films of my teenage years. They were cheesy, but hey, they were better than flipping through the lingerie section of the Sears catalogue.)

2)  Eddie Murphy.  (He had an edge that could cut through solid rock.)

3)  Freddie Mercury.  (He knew who he was and he owned it.)

4)  The relative safety of the world.  (I could take off first thing in the morning on my bike and my mom didn’t have to worry about whether or not I’d end up on the back of a milk carton.)

5)  Comic books that were fresh and original.  (The New Teen Titans and the X-Men ruled!)

6)  Lynda carter as Wonder Woman.  (Technically the series ended in 1979, but her presence endured.)

7)  Ronald Reagan.  (He was a nutty leader but not in a terrifying George W. Bush way.)

8)  Heavy Metal music.  (Say what you will, but it still beats any of the derivative pop garbage we call music these days.)

9)  Classmates that thought I was a narc and spray painted it on my locker.  (At least it gave me some street cred.)

10)  Quantum Leap.

11)  The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.  (All these years later and no one has even come close to touching him.)

12)  Walking to the corner store.  (When you were young it was the thing to do; you’d hang out at 7-Eleven and talk about stupid shit. Now I sit in a back room with a bunch of bellmen and talk about stupid shit.)

13)  Watching the Thriller video for the first time.

14)  The reign of vinyl albums.

15)  Fresh air.

16)  Being able to eat fast food without seeing its effects on my rapidly-expanding gut.

17)  My hairline.

18)  Watching a space shuttle take off.

19)  My freedom.  (Yes, I love my family, but freedom is nice in small doses.)

20)  Ignorance.  (The older I get, the more I learn. The more I learn, the more I second-guess myself. I don’t like second-guessing myself.)

That’s all folks. Feel free to share any thoughts about the 1980s below, Until next time, stay cool.


Katie of Sass and Balderdash knocks it out of the park with this one, folks. Check it out.

Selling Your Sex Tape Makes You an Opportunist–Not an Entrepreneur

About The Hook

Husband. Father. Bellman. Author of The Bellman Chronicles. Reader of comic books and observer and chronicler of the human condition. And to my wife's eternal dismay, a mere mortal and non-vampire. I'm often told I look like your uncle, cousin, etc. If I wore a hat, I'd hang it on a hat rack in my home in Niagara Falls, Canada. You can call me The Hook, everyone else does.
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101 Responses to A Look Back At The 80s: Hook Style!

  1. I love David Lynch – I think you need to seriously think about that statement…

    I, too, was a teenager in the ’80s…I loved it – good alternative and hardcore music scene, shaving the sides of my head, bangs down to my chin, black clothing all around, black makeup…good times had by all…

    I don’t miss: A-ha, Duran Duran, Wham, Bronski Beat and most of the techno slop that was being created… I definitely don’t miss the crappy dance clubs that played the music above, Valley Girl culture (but Zappa’s song – I’ll take it – it’s Zappa – he can do no wrong in my eyes).

  2. valleygirl96 says:

    Thanks for the walk down memory lane. I, too was a teen of the 80s. I think the hair is my biggest regret. My hair was huge. And I must admit that I had a poster of Simon LeBon lounging next to a white tiger hung up in my room. Aaahhhh….Duran Duran. Same concept but much better than the boy bands of today.

  3. moi says:

    haha I was a teen then, I remember some of this stuff.

  4. The Cutter says:

    I agree about the comic books. They pretty much peaked in the 80’s. There’s a reason why today’s writers keep rehashing the same ideas from then.

  5. mairedubhtx says:

    My daughter grew up during the 80s and I’m glad of it. She was able to ride her bike around the neighborhood and i didn’t have to worry about her. She had a great time growing up. It was indeed a great time. She’s a bit younger than you, and wasn’t into soft porn at the time (she had Madonna). But I loved the 80s. All in all, they were good, I think.

  6. Fresh Ginger says:

    Vinyl is making a comeback. It’s all the rage. 🙂

  7. MissFourEyes says:

    I like the crazy-ass catchphrases! You don’t see a lot of crazy-ass catchphrases anymore

  8. Duran Duran never did it for me, but there is a video of my first band concert. The kid in front of me blocks my face completely, but my hair is fanned out so big that it looks like he has peacock feathers behind his head! When you mentioned the Thriller video, I gotta say, it reminded me of Pre-MTV when we all waited up for Friday night videos to come on TV! 🙂

  9. Pyx says:

    Ronald Reagan? Oh trust me I get it, no one is going to insist they miss Brian Mulroney.

    And funny thing is I was accused of being a NARC at school as well in Niagara. I mean the guys honestly thought my earrings were tiny cameras. I never denied it though, it kept them away from me, but these were the same guys that watched ‘The Wanderers’ on Fox Movie night and came back to school on monday to spray paint their own lockers: The Wanderes.

    the chances of them getting NARC right was slim to none.

  10. Katie says:

    Your hairline–ha! My boyfriend would agree with you on the Eddie Murphy and comic books. I wasn’t born until ’90, so I can’t say much about the 80s, which is a shame because there’s so much to say…

    The rock music was good!

  11. Chatty Owl says:

    David Lynch?! Really?! I still enjoy Twin Peaks from time to time hahaha

  12. jmlindy422 says:

    I was a teen in the 70s and I miss those same things from the 80s. 80s were a pretty good time to be in your 20s. Crappy disco music is a blast to dance to and then New Wave followed immediately upon disco’s death, so I didn’t miss a dance beat. Earth Wind and Fire to David Bowie almost overnight? I can handle that. And The Clash! I mean, The Clash!!!

  13. Honie Briggs says:

    What a blast from the past! Nothing will ever compare to the 80’s. Coming of age in the middle of that decade, I didn’t realize it truly was the end of the world as I knew it.

    • The Hook says:

      Well put. Your work continues to impress me.

      • Honie Briggs says:

        I’ve almost reached the end of the Bellman Chronicles. Just returned from a visit to NYC and I swear my view of hotel staff has been completely changed. Also, I plugged your book while we were waiting outside the hotel for a taxi and was promptly told, “you know we’re doormen not bellmen, right?” Too funny. I said, “Oh, I know, but my friend who’s a bellman in Canada wrote it and it’s funny as shit. Read it, you’ll laugh your ass off!” I’m sure he was thinking…’shut up you crazy lady and hand me that fiver!’

      • The Hook says:

        You rock, crazy lady!
        Thanks! Your support means the world to me. Seriously!

  14. Three Time Loser says:

    Totally agree with most of these. Back in the 80s, I could feather hair like no other (and, thanks to a heavy dose of Aqua-Net, it stayed that way all day and night long!). I miss the days of leaving in the morning with your friends on your bike and all your mom said to you was, “be home when the street lights come on.” Great Canadian music in the 80s as well, although I didn’t appreciate it until much later. Speaking of #10 – did you know Quantum Leap is on available on Netflix?

  15. JackieP says:

    I have no memories of the 80s, hmmm. I was there, kinda. Just don’t remember. 😉

  16. littlesundog says:

    I’m an old hag, I admit. Born in 1961 I was exposed to 60’s, 70’s and 80’s… late 70’s being the best years in rock music. However, I’m not sure there is much difference between some of the awful hair back then and the awful hair now. Same with clothing fashion, tattoo’s, implants, and piercings. Maybe I’m one of those people who has fallen off the potato truck… but I’m not seeing anything more awful about how it was back then. It’s all about individual taste and perception.

    On the other hand… there was a lot of improvement over the years, in overriding the “rules” of society. I loved the years of rebellion… and that still goes on today! Expression is a wonderful thing – whatever form it takes!

  17. You set off an afternoon of “what the hell happened to me in the 80s?” that started with me actually having to count out how old I was in 1980. So the 80s for me was 23 – 33 a decade so unremarkable for me I can’t remember it. Somewhere in there I was married for about 6 months but I nothing stands out. I loved “Quantum Leap” and “Thriller” but Johnny Carson and vinyl were around a long time before that. And for some reason I don’t know anything about porn except for the saying, “He looked like an 80s porn star”. Of course thanks to your lists I think I know what that means now. 😉

  18. Cameron says:

    Your list made me giggle. I was a teen in the nineties. I think you won. And this is the second blog I’ve read today that mentions heavy metal. Something in the air?

  19. WordsFallFromMyEyes says:

    Wow, with that hooker – holy fk. Sigh.

    Oh Hook, you never never fail to entertain me xxxx 🙂 As for ‘that hair wtf’ – if you see some of my older videos, you’ll see I so agree!! Embarrrrrrrrraassssssed.

    Love your comment on David Lynch – hee!

  20. MishaBurnett says:

    What I miss most about 1980’s music was the plethora of obscure literary references that you could catch to impress your friends and confuse your enemies. For example, you mentioned Duran Duran–I would always put on my smug face and explain that the character the band was named after was “Durand Durand”. And then there was the Police song that talked about “that book by Nabikov”, and a Don Henly song that mentioned Baudelaire, and if you were into “alternative” music the sky was the limit–Shreikback, Suixsie and the Banshees, Depeche Mode, Joy Division… ah, the good old days!

    What do kids have nowadays? Muse, basically, that’s about it.

  21. "HE WHO" says:

    I feel sorry for those who missed out on the sixties, especially the music. I went back to school (University) in the 80’s and because of that, being older than most students and able to hang around with the profs I was really pumped. In my Logic class, a young student said, “I know why I’m taking this course, but why are you?” Needless to say, it was a difficult course, but I earned the gold medal in Philosophy. I often wonder why she was taking the class. Back to the sixties – sex, drugs and rock n’ roll. Need I say more?

  22. 😆
    I also remember in horror the shoulder pads, spandex leotards and …Spandau Ballet! !!!
    on the plus side: Ministry, watching Sagan’s Cosmos and dance floors!!!

  23. Jennifer says:

    Seems I was indeed living under a rock. My hair rocked in the (latter half of) eighties. Aside from vinyl, missed out on the rest. And not for the reasons you may think, although some people did actually think that about me – specially at the school disco.
    I’d love to go back to high school though, as I am now, in my teenage body. That would be kinda fun.

  24. Confessions of Your Husband's Mistress says:

    I love Quantum Leap! You and I share the same teenage era. Ahhh, good times.

  25. Diane C says:

    Hey! Don’t dis my Flock of Seagulls hairdo! You can see what I look like at http://tinyurl.com/cksrsrh.
    I hit my 20s when the 1980s started. My best memory was being in a club in Tokyo on the 3rd floor of a building with everyone dancing to Van Halen’s Jump. The whole club jumped along with the lyrics and I thought the floor was going to collapse. But it was awesome!

  26. Cathy Ulrich says:

    Yes, LOVED Eddie Murphy, LOVED Quantum Leap, LOVED Johnny Carson. David Lynch? Not so much…

  27. Cathy Ulrich says:

    Trading Places? One of my favorite movies of all time!

  28. Ink Pastries says:

    We watch reruns of Quantum Leap on Netflix. I have to say I love Scott Bakula’s chest (right up their with William Shatner’s) which got displayed frequently in that show, forgive my female pigness, thank you very much. I’m with you on the David Lynch. Some guy took me to Eraserhead for a first date. He didn’t get a second one. : )

  29. Ink Pastries says:

    Also, what I don’t miss about the 80s? I don’t miss having a history degree and working as a fry cook.

  30. susielindau says:

    I feel like Muse picks up where Freddy left us. Don’t feel bad Hook. I am older than you!

  31. If you look through these lists, it’s mostly about hair and porn. In that order.

  32. stephrogers says:

    Wow. It seems you measure the decade in porn, hair and comic books. Good form!

  33. Rohan 7 Things says:

    The hair and music from those 80’s pornos is so bad it’s a wonder anyone was able to get off to it all! Oh and Eddie Murphy owned the 80’s!

    I only spent my first four years of life in the 80’s but much of childhood was made up of the cultural aftermath of that decade. And I don’t miss Duran Duran either.

    Great post as always 🙂


  34. 1jaded1 says:

    Loved number 4 on the like list. In order to do the same today, you’d have to give your kid a daily dose of gps.

  35. Cayman Thorn says:

    I blame the popularity of dry humping in the 80s on the commies. We didn’t have the time to strip with the threat of nuclear annihilation staring us down and our girlfriend’s Duran Duran LP turning our brains into penny candy. Besides, we had Ginger Lynn to look forward to.

  36. unfetteredbs says:

    thanks for the flashback dude. We were real dorks in the 80’s and yes, the world was so different. How about some Poison or Winger? haaa Now there was some hair.

  37. Purnimodo says:

    Tank girl! Och and so many other movies. Nirvana, Teddy Ruxpin, Captain Planet, Are you afraid of the dark… pop rocks and neon tutu’s!! Best decade!!

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