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cadmonkey
06-16-2005, 06:57 AM
Talking About My Generation

Best inventions of the 80's

By El Presidente (elpresidente@barstoolsports.com)



I was born in 1977. And the odds are that if youíre reading the Stool you were probably born within five -ten years of me. Our extensive consumer research reveals that the average age of the typical Stoolie is anywhere between 21-35 years old. While our generation didnít have a defining event such as Woodstock growing up that doesnít mean we werenít shaped by the inventions of our youth. So without further ado here are the 9 most important inventions that defined growing up in the raging 80ís.

9. Ultra Light Baseball Bats

Playing little league baseball before the advent of the Ultra Light was like driving a car on square wheels. It made that big of a difference. Essentially swinging an Ultra Light was the equivalent of swinging a wiffle ball bat but it some how had the same pop as a Green Easton. The rumor around my little league field was that the aluminum used in the Ultra Light was the same stuff that was used on space ships and I still havenít been convinced otherwise . Regardless of what magical formula created the Ultra Light, nobody can deny its impact. If you were lucky enough to own one, your ticket was pretty much punched to popularville. Suddenly everybody who was anybody wanted to be your friend. Furthermore, Ultra Light ownership created thousands of mini-Mussoliniís. Kids ruled with an iron fist when deciding who could and couldnít use their bat.

8. Street Hockey Goalie Pads

To be honest Iím not even sure when these things were invented, but Iím not sure how anybody played street hockey without them. It made playing goalie the most fun position on the street. But for all the joy that these goalie pads brought to so many lives, there are still 1 out of every 5 dudes who probably still have a nasty scar on their knee from when they slid on the cement without realizing their pads had moved to the side. This is when being Pete Peters stopped being fun.

7. Super Soaker

All little boys love toy guns. And the best type of toy gun is the squirt gun. Yup, there is nothing like a good old fashioned squirt gun fight. But in the late 80ís there was a radical change in the once innocent world of squirt gun fighting. It was all fun and games until the advent of the Super Soaker. The Super Soaker was to squirt guns what the automatic was to real guns. No longer was playing with squirt guns a friendly proposition. If you didnít have a Super Soaker, you were going to get massacred to the point of borderline drowning. The only protection against the Super Soaker was the garden hose which invariably led to serious problems and fights. The Super Soaker changed the face of squirt gun fights forever, but I guess technology always makes war a bloodier endeavor.

6. Jams

I heard that Jams were making a comeback last year. There was even an article on Boston.com about it. I find this hard to believe because I thought Jams were one of those things that needed the stars to be perfectly aligned to have any chance of succeeding. And that time already came and went in the 80ís. Jams were the ugliest clothing line ever to captivate a nation. I mean everybody had Jams. The uglier the better. They were so popular that there were companies created just to make knock off Jams. When you sit back and think about your childhood, Jams are the type of thing that just makes you shake your head and smile. Oh, those crazy days and those crazy ass jams.

5. NBA 7 Foot Jammer

This was probably the most violent game I played growing up. I know what lots of you are probably thinking. How could basketball be the most violent game I played? Well NBA 7 foot Jammer was as much about manhood as it was about anything else. For my generation, it was like going off to war. Getting dunked on by a close friend was the equivalent of getting wounded in battle. Itís the type of thing that can stick with you to this day. Therefore, people did whatever they could to prevent getting posterized. And since goal tending was allowed there was basically no other way to score than to throw it down. The result was that the paint became one of the toughest places in the universe. The only thing that stopped people from actually dying is that eventually some fool would hang on rim and break the Jammer. In hindsight itís probably a good thing.

4. Upper Deck

Baseball cards have always been an important part of a kidís life. Young boys have been collecting cards since the dawn of time. But the advent of Upper Deck marked the beginning of a new era. No longer were people in it to collect their favorite player or get a stick of gum. Nope, Upper Deck cards were about all about the money. They were slicker, shinier and way more expensive than everything else on the market. I personally have a fond place in my heart for Upper Deck because it was my first get rich scheme. I bought 100 Juan Gonzalez Upper Deck rookie cards thinking Iíd never have to work an honest day in my life. That turned out the same way Barstool Sports is turning out. Regardless, Upper Deck was the beginning of the end of the card industry. After Upper Deck launched it seemed like a new type of trading card hit the market every two weeks with each card being more decadent and expensive than the last. The result was that the card market got flooded and basically fell to pieces. It was a sad day when every single card in Becketts has a down arrow.

3. Pumps

While Jams may be the ugliest trend that ever captivated a nation, Reebok Pumps had to be the dumbest. (But I still may buy a pair if they come back on the market). Reebok Pumps were the heaviest basketball sneakers ever invented. A Mafioso could put Reebok pumps on your feet instead of cement shoes and get the same results when throwing you in the ocean. But the weight of the sneakers didnít stop millions of people from buying these sneakers. They were so popular that Nike actually copied Reebok and came out with their own version of the pumps. The beauty of the Nike pumps were that you actually had to wear the pump around your neck to be on call for an emergency pump up at all times. One of my good buddies actually went through all of 7th grade wearing the Nike pump around his neck. Itís still the first thing I think of when I remember Middle School. Oh the memories.

2. The Mini Football

There were two variations of the mini football that were very popular. The first one was the mini hutch and the second was the Nerf Turbo. Both of them changed pick up football forever. Before the advent of the mini football it was virtually impossible to throw a pass more than 20 yards. But that all changed with the hutch because everybody was transformed into Dan Marino. You could legitimately throw the thing 50 yards with just a flick of the wrist. Suddenly cover corners were just as important in your recess draft as in the NFL Draft. And you didnít have to worry about jamming your fingers every ten seconds. The best thing you can say about the hutch is that it is the only thing on this list that is still in regular use today. And it would still be my first choice on what ball to use today if I was playing pick up football.

1. Nintendo

How can any list of important inventions from the 80ís not have Nintendo on it? If you add up everything I did in my life from ages 11-16, Nintendo still probably logged more hours than everything else combined. This includes sleep! I actually already wrote an article a month ago about the ten best Nintendo games of all time and since effiency is at a premium at the Stool, I donít want to waste precious paper and repeat myself. Feel free to read the article in the April 20th issue of the Stool. http://barstoolsports.com/article/10_Best_Nintendo_Games_of_All_Time/136/

So there you have it. The nine most important inventions of the 80ís. If you think we left anything of this list weíd love to hear from you. Send us email to feedback@barstoolsports.com




http://barstoolsports.com/article/Talking_About_My_Generation/224/ (http://)

trndobrd
06-16-2005, 07:19 AM
Yep. Didn't have a single one of those things growing up.

cadmonkey
06-16-2005, 07:28 AM
Yep. Didn't have a single one of those things growing up.


That's to bad. Another great invention was the Big Wheel.

Chiefs_Mike_Topeka
06-16-2005, 07:36 AM
I remember when I finally convinced my Mom to get me some of the Reebok pumps..... I had to promise to cut the grass and take out the trash for 6 months without being reminded or told to. (Of course that lasted for a week after I actually got the shoes!) Those things were the shit..... they were blue with black trim, had the outrageously huge tounge to fit the pump in. But damn were they cool.... pumped those things up so tight I could not feel my feet. If they bring those back I am buying some!

foxman
06-16-2005, 07:42 AM
Shouldnt the Atari get credit over Nintendo since Atari was really the first video game console?

foxman
06-16-2005, 07:43 AM
Oh and when did the Thong come out? That was a nice invention.

Mile High Mania
06-16-2005, 08:07 AM
Were "pumps" really an 80's creation? I graduated high school in '89 and just don't recall them as I was likely out of the "pumps demographic".

This guy was born in 1977 ... so he was 13 in 1990. In 7th grade he remembers a guy wearing pumps around his neck... so would that put him in 7th grade in 1990?

I guess the pumps are a borderline 80's creation.

I just don't see how you leave the Rubik's Cube and Atari off the list. I think of Nintendo as more 90s.

Mile High Mania
06-16-2005, 08:09 AM
Plus, according to their site... Upper Deck wasn't founded until 1989, so I continue to call bullshit on this list.

cadmonkey
06-16-2005, 08:13 AM
I remember when I finally convinced my Mom to get me some of the Reebok pumps..... I had to promise to cut the grass and take out the trash for 6 months without being reminded or told to. (Of course that lasted for a week after I actually got the shoes!) Those things were the shit..... they were blue with black trim, had the outrageously huge tounge to fit the pump in. But damn were they cool.... pumped those things up so tight I could not feel my feet. If they bring those back I am buying some!


I pumped miine up to much about a month after I had them and popped one of the shoes...........my mom kicked my ass.

cadmonkey
06-16-2005, 08:14 AM
Plus, according to their site... Upper Deck wasn't founded until 1989, so I continue to call bullshit on this list.


wasn't 1989 in the 80's???????

Mile High Mania
06-16-2005, 08:21 AM
wasn't 1989 in the 80's???????

I guess my point is, yes, that is the 80s but I don't view that product as a an 80s product. Know what I mean?

Nirvana was formed in 1987 and their first album was in 1989... but, nobody heard about them until early 90s and were given the title of "killing the hair bands".

But... Nirvana is not viewed as an 80s band. That's where I'm coming from.

cadmonkey
06-16-2005, 08:41 AM
I guess my point is, yes, that is the 80s but I don't view that product as a an 80s product. Know what I mean?

Nirvana was formed in 1987 and their first album was in 1989... but, nobody heard about them until early 90s and were given the title of "killing the hair bands".

But... Nirvana is not viewed as an 80s band. That's where I'm coming from.


I hear what you are saying. We need to let it slide though.

Pennywise
06-16-2005, 08:54 AM
What about Hair Bands and parachute pants and my Members Only jacket?

cadmonkey
06-16-2005, 12:47 PM
There was a time when the streets were ruled by bad dudes and their Big Wheels. I had a busted up hand me down that had seen its better days, and every punk on my block made sure that I didn't forget it. All of that changed on Christmas morning, 1984, when I woke up to find the ultimate driving machine under my tree... The Sidewinder. It was to Big Wheels what the Ultra Light was to baseball bats, and now is to beers. The kids still didn't love me, but at least they feared me. Flying down the street, cowboy hat on my head and six shooters in my hands, I would take aim at any hombres bold enough to stand in my way. I would gain speed until my striped tube socked legs became a cartoonish blur.

Then, POW! A perfectly placed cap shot into the crowd. Followed by a ferocious tug on the pull-up handle, and I was gloriously side winding out of control. A 360 sent the smarter ones scattering on their inferior smurf mobiles. The girls screamed and the boys wet their pants. All went running to their Mommies. The only thing left after that was to puff on well deserved candy cigarette and ride into the sunset. I miss my Sidewinder. Like any other, its one weakness was being left parked behind my father's car. It never stood a chance. I hope it was quick and painless.

Ari Chi3fs
06-16-2005, 12:49 PM
the best invention of the 90's was internet pr0n.

Braincase
06-16-2005, 12:56 PM
Fall of Communism, and Aerosmith's Pump album.

CosmicPal
06-16-2005, 01:13 PM
parachute pants and my Members Only jacket?

Ged, I used to have a pair of parachute pants- they were comfortable, after all. I also had a maroon Members Only jacket. I should just shoot myself and get it over with now...

Count Zarth
06-16-2005, 01:46 PM
the best invention of the 90's was internet pr0n.

My friend, porn has been around a LOT longer than that.

Traveller
06-16-2005, 01:50 PM
Weren't CD's invented in the 80's?

Ghostof
06-16-2005, 01:53 PM
Lawn Darts were the hands down best invention ever.


Regardless of how many people got impaled with them.


Now the pussy version is out, called "Washers"

jspchief
06-16-2005, 02:11 PM
This list sucks. Half of the stuff marks the beginning of the pussification of American youth, and the othe half of the stuff just plain sucks.

9. Lighter bats. Because before that, it was impossible to play little league. This invention just made the twerps of the world feel less inadequate. If the bat was too heavy, you probably sucked anyway.

8. Pads are for pussies. Enough said.

7. Okay. The Supersoaker is pretty badass.

6. Jams? I remember a lot of clothing trends in the 80s. I don't remember Jams. Must be what pussy baseball/street hockey players wore.

5. 7 foot basket. Yea, it's obviously improved the jump shooting skills of millions. Nothing like taking away the need to practice fundamentals. It's pretty clear this kid sucked at sports.

4. Upper Deck. Ruined baseball card collecting. If you collect, you understand, if you don't, you wouldn't care.

3. Pumps. Obviously revolutionized athletic shoes. Is there even a shoe out there that doesn't inflate these days?

2. Again, this kid sucked at sports. Couldn't throw a football more than 20 yards before the mini nerf? My guess is he paid for college with a clarinet scholarship.

1. Ahhh, Nintendo. The thing that finally allowed you to give up on your ridiculous delusions of being an athlete. Get out of that scorching sun and away from those back-breaking lead bats and footballs.

This kid sucks. I'm positive I chased him home from school most days.

Donger
06-16-2005, 02:32 PM
Vans and Dep hairgel.

Reaper16
06-16-2005, 10:36 PM
Nintendo as a company has been around since the late 1800s.

Best inventions of the 80's: Nintendo Entertainment System, Thrash Metal, Death Metal, Zack Greinke (hopefully)

luv
06-17-2005, 12:26 AM
Vans and Dep hairgel.

Can't remember if it was late 80's or early 90's, but Dep gel reminds me of Aqua Net hairpray. I only had a small part of ruining the ozone with that stuff.

luv
06-17-2005, 12:29 AM
And recordable tapes without having to stick scotch tape on old tapes you didn't listen to anymore. Was that 80's? I was born in late '76, so I didn't really start paying attention to pop culture until the late 80's.

Miles
06-17-2005, 12:49 AM
Were "pumps" really an 80's creation? I graduated high school in '89 and just don't recall them as I was likely out of the "pumps demographic".

This guy was born in 1977 ... so he was 13 in 1990. In 7th grade he remembers a guy wearing pumps around his neck... so would that put him in 7th grade in 1990?

I guess the pumps are a borderline 80's creation.

I just don't see how you leave the Rubik's Cube and Atari off the list. I think of Nintendo as more 90s.

I remember pumps being big around 1990-91. Though i was living in Nebraska at the time so they could have caught on everywhere else earlier.

Miles
06-17-2005, 12:51 AM
My friend, porn has been around a LOT longer than that.

But not available for free on the net.

Rausch
06-17-2005, 04:58 AM
Talking About My Generation

Best inventions of the 80's

By El Presidente (elpresidente@barstoolsports.com)



6. Jams

I heard that Jams were making a comeback last year. There was even an article on Boston.com about it. I find this hard to believe because I thought Jams were one of those things that needed the stars to be perfectly aligned to have any chance of succeeding. And that time already came and went in the 80ís. Jams were the ugliest clothing line ever to captivate a nation. I mean everybody had Jams. The uglier the better. They were so popular that there were companies created just to make knock off Jams. When you sit back and think about your childhood, Jams are the type of thing that just makes you shake your head and smile. Oh, those crazy days and those crazy ass jams.
http://barstoolsports.com/article/Talking_About_My_Generation/224/ (http://)

I'm always ahead of the fashion curve.


Rausch,

just waiting for the Lederhosen trend...

http://www.pettipond.com/charliesangels.jpg

KC Jones
06-17-2005, 06:29 AM
Were "pumps" really an 80's creation? I graduated high school in '89 and just don't recall them as I was likely out of the "pumps demographic".

This guy was born in 1977 ... so he was 13 in 1990. In 7th grade he remembers a guy wearing pumps around his neck... so would that put him in 7th grade in 1990?

I guess the pumps are a borderline 80's creation.

I just don't see how you leave the Rubik's Cube and Atari off the list. I think of Nintendo as more 90s.

yep - I graduated in '89 too and I didn't have any of the things on that list. Those were all 90's gadgets, or late 80's and for little kids.

wildcat09
06-17-2005, 06:38 AM
For those who want the pumps to come back, check out any eastbay magazine. they did come back