Sale into the 90s--a 1980s/1990s history Tumblr

A tumblr about 1980s and 1990s history, and I use the term "history" very loosely.

The 1980s | The 1990s

My Retail History Blog | The Zine | My Portfolio

145. The Real Springfield Elementary School (1994)


"Attention, this is Principal Skinner, your principal, with a message from the principal’s office. All students please proceed immediately to an assembly in the Butthead Memorial Auditorium….Dammit, I wish we hadn’t let the students name that one!”


The whole episode began harmlessly enough just before Christmas, when school officials decided to make naming the new school a learning exercise. They asked students to choose a name and then compose essays on why theirs should be selected.

The only stipulation was that the name reflect the natural surroundings of the red-brick building scheduled for completion by August. The school, the 11th facility in a district of 8,800 students, is in a rural area outside town, across the street from a pumpkin patch.

The elementary school student who submitted “Springfield”—whom district officials have declined to name—wrote that his name was best because “the school is being built on a field and Spring is a happy season.” 2

Uh-huh. Whatever you say, lil kid. 

Springfield Elementary’s website.

1. “School Name Cartoon Image = Controversy.” The Item, January 26, 1994.,4491154

2. Riddle, Lyn. “A Rascal Cartoon Character Sets Off a Controversy in S.C.” Los Angeles Times, March 1, 1994.

144. Jewel sings “Angel Standing By” at the 1997 MTV Video Music Awards


It’s probably one of the shortest and absolutely the most simple VMA performance ever, but its so fitting for what an absolute heartbreaking song it is. 


89. Paula Abdul’s Vibeology performance at the 1991 MTV Video Music Awards (September 5, 1991)

(Special) Sale Into the 90s 2 — A history Zine about insignificant events of the 1980s and 1990s

Next month, I will have a table at the Richmond Zine Fest, and I decided that it was time to create a new ‘zine. So here is Sale Into the 90s II. 12 pages (6 folded) printed on good ol printer paper, in black and white, because I have a lot of black cartridges around. 

I don’t want to give much away, but there is Simpsons, Salsa, Copycats, and art. Available on my Etsy right now. Issue number one is still available too. 

The Master List

Tumblr’s search feature is something awful. I’ve compiled a list of every single entry from here to assist me when I need to reference something, and to my new followers. 

The 1980s | The 1990s

My Retail History Blog | The Zine | My Portfolio

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143. The “Speed” Copycat (1997)



142. “The Late Show with Joan Rivers” first episode, October 9, 1986

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Here is the first night of Joan’s short lived tenure as a talk show host on Fox back when Fox was just starting. Arsenio Hall was later the permanent host of the talk show until he left to film Coming to America

Does anybody remember Joan’s other talk show, Can We Shop? which was like a talk show plus a shopping channel? Mom and I would watch it sometimes, and one time there was a guy selling a toilet deodorizer that you left in the tank. The guy showed Joan how clean the toilet water was by drinking from the toilet from a ladle. Here is a clip of Joan discussing a Looney Tunes purse in February of 1994. 

141. Going back to school with Seventeen Magazine (1995 & 1996)

Seventeen Magazine, August 1996

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Where I grew up, school always started the day after Labor Day. It’s fitting that I post this today as a reminder of that seasonal anxiety we all used to get this exact day for 13 years.

Seventeen Magazine, August 1996

Seventeen Magazine, August 1996

Did anybody else get those small Sanrio catalogs in the mail about two times a year in the mid 90s? My Hello Kitty Headquarters was the My Doll & Toy Shoppe (which always sounded like you were saying “Midol Toy Shoppe”) in Hampton, Virginia. I stopped going there some time in high school, the last trip there was when mom bought me a Pekkle Duck purse after I got my learners permit. The store died with the 90s. 

Seventeen Magazine, August 1996

This was the second year CK One was really big. Yes, I wanted this notebook and bag set, no I never got it. I still don’t own a bottle of CK One and its 2014. Such a heavenly middle school scent. 

Seventeen Magazine, August 1996

I was a fat kid growing up, I still am. Mom thought if I wore baggy wide-legged jeans like the ones these girls are wearing, it would hide my fat. I think they just made me look even bigger. I wanted that rainbow purse. I think Delia*s sold a similar purse. 

Seventeen Magazine, August 1996

The first time I ever went to Target, I bought a pair of shoes that looked similar to the oxblood ones net to the blue lace up shoes. The first time I wore them in 8th grade, I paired them with a pair of light green plaid pants, as was the style back then. 

Seventeen Magazine, August 1996

I remember this page as though it was yesterday. I had a purple hologram notebook, and those silver hologram Yikes! pencils with the little ridges. Everybody at my school would pencil fight on the bus with those shiny rainbow Pentech pencils. WalMart used to sell them individually in big bins, I’m sure they stopped when they realized half of Hampton’s middle school students were stealing them. 

Aren’t those lunchbox purses amazing? 

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140. Surge banned in schools (1997)


This is an article from my personal collection. I was really big on cutting articles out of the paper when I was a pre-teen. 

Surge was never banned from my school. They didn’t care what we drank as long as it wasn’t booze, you know? I remember when Surge came out right after Christmas, 1996 when I was 13. I drank a lot of it in 8th grade because it was new, but I never remember being “wired” from it. I think I had so much caffeine in my lifetime by then that it didn’t bother me. Just like today. I could drink Diet Coke and coffee before bed and still sleep.

Dad Stole It For Me!

My dad gave me this vending machine sticker right after Surge came out. If memory serves me correct, dad was at the firehouse where he volunteered at when the Coke guy came to refill the machine, and it gave it to him. 

I Know I Posted This Before

A little off topic, but this was my soda can collection when I was a teenager. I had it from when I was 11-17. This picture is from 1998. You can see Surge next to the wacky Cherry Coke can from the Surge era. Coke had some creative designers back then, I wonder what happened. That new Diet Coke can is atrocious. 

New Diet Coke Design

139. Marge Simpsons’ shoe size (1990)

I’m sitting here watching the Every Simpsons Marathon on the FXX channel, and the first season episode where Marge gets bowling lessons from Jacque is on. 


Remember the scene where Marge is offended that the man at the bowling alley asks her for her shoe size? It was because Marge wore a size 13AAA shoe! I completely forgot about this, and I’ve seen this episode at least once a year for 24 years. 


Thirteen double A!!! The closest I've got is a nine and a fifteen.

139. TV Guide, February 9-15, 1985 


I’ve mentioned before that I have an obsession with Night Court. I was also obsessed with TV Guide when I was a toddler. My mom remembers me trying to hoard all the TV Guides, and putting them in the living room side table when I was three. I also have a memory of smearing my sticky lollypop hands all over a TV Guide with Tubbs & Crockett from Miami Vice on it. As I grew up, I still read TV Guide when I’d come home from school the day it came in the mail. The first thing I always did was peel off the address sticker, and roll that glue around with my fingers. Then I would read all the articles, and find out what Simpsons was going to be about next week. Sometimes mom would point out if a cartoon special was coming on one night — after all, that’s how we were introduced to Simpsons in December of 1989. 

Right, Right, Night Court. Loved watching it a s a child, even if I didn’t remember plot points, obsessed with it as an adult now that Encore shows it every day. I record every episode on my DVR, and right now I’m right when Christine found out she was pregnant by her undercover cop boyfriend who she married in an Italian restaurant. You know who married them? Uncle Phil from Fresh Prince. 


(That week’s episode was “Billie’s Valentine”)

This TV Guide is from the second season of Night Court, when Ellen Foley joined the cast, playing Billie the Defense Attorney. Ellen replaced Paula Kelly, who I adored in the first season. My favorite Billie episode from season two is “The Birthday Visitor" when Billie and Harry were held hostage in her apartment by a neurotic robber. There were so many hot scenes of sexual tension between Harry and Billie. ooo


Okay, secret time unpopular opinion, I like Liz and Billie more than Markie Post’s Christine Sullivan. GASP, I know. I think Liz and Billie’s characters were supposed to be experienced, always looking for a way to move up, but Christine was portrayed as a beginner, like Judge Stone’s courtroom was the second law job she ever had after law school. I think that was clear in her first episode, when she played a temp right at the beginning of season 2, before Billie started. 

TV Guide, February 9-15, 1985

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The article describes Harry Anderson’s beginnings, and the antics on the Night Court Set. He helped Ellen with her driver’s test! 


There’s a short blurb about John Larroquette too, and how the great episode “Dan’s Parents" was inspired by John’s life in New Orleans. In the episode, Dan’s yokel parents from Armpit Swamp, USA, came to NYC to see him, and embarrassed the hell out of Dan. How on earth did they get up to New York? Was it their first plane ride? Did they take the covered wagon and tie up the horses outside of the court building? These people were Grapes of Wrath boonie people. 

There was also a few interesting things in this TV Guide:

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