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

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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)

143. The “Speed” Copycat (1997)



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

(1) (2)

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

(this entry is in html)

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? 

Read More

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.

138. Robin Williams’ arms in “Hook” (1991)

I read somewhere years ago that Robin had to either get his arms waxed or shaved before filming HookI don’t even know the source, but I think it because he didn’t look like Peter Pan with that jungle on his arms. 


Robin defuzzed back in January

Robin Williams Syndrome" (Urban Dictionary)

Popeye Is the Best Movie Robin Williams Ever Made (Vanity Fair) - For years I would watch Popeye every time it was on TV. 

137. “Young models ready for show” (August 10, 1992)


Peterson, Craig. “Young Models Ready for Show.” The Press-Courier, August 10, 1992.

136. BURGESS v. CLAIROL, INC. (1986, 1991)


(I don’t know if this is the Foot Fixer model in question. This is a photo I found online of “internet celebrity” Kailyn Wilcher using a Foot Fixer model.)

Who knew something that most people buy as a thoughtless Christmas Present on December 23rd could make a man lose his legs? 

In 1986, George Burgess purchased a Clairol Foot Fixer, an electronic foot bath massager. Naturally, he put his feet in the warm water for about 30 minutes. Oh, George was also a diabetic with poor foot circulation. I’m pre-diabetic, I’m scared to put my feet in any danger, like too tight shoes, or hot showers, because I’m afraid of losing my feet. That’s what happened to George, his feet blistered, and the blood vessels in his toes were burnt to such a degree that there was no hope in saving them. Eventually, George had his legs amputated from the knees down. 

A lawsuit ensued, with Burgess stating that the Foot Fixer heated water to 105 degrees, (which could maim people with poor circulation) instead of the proper 95 degrees, and that Clairol did not put warnings on the box or the instructions.  However, in 1991, George died. The lawsuit was amended to a wrongful death lawsuit—from the research I did, I never found a cause of George’s death though. Due to his death, with the lawsuit being amended to George’s estate as the plaintiff, the claim was put an end to. When he died, so did the lawsuit: 

Punitive damages are not available under Illinois’ Wrongful Death Act, nor does a punitive damage claim pass to the decedent’s estate under Illinois’ Survival Act, the U.S . District Court for the Northern District of Illinois recently held (George Burgess and
Cynthia Burgess v. Clairol Inc. . No. 87 C 8918, N.D. Ill.)


1. “BURGESS v. CLAIROL, INC. |” BURGESS v. CLAIROL, INC. |,%20INC. (accessed August 3, 2014).

2. Mealey’s Litigation Reports 6: 5-7. (accessed August 3, 2014)