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Angry Black Lady Chronicles

Old Lady Turns Older: Part Deux

ts-gertrude-baines

Last week, I told y’all about how some old lady, Gertrude Baines turned 115 years old, and I recounted some of history’s greatest hits from the 19th and 20th centuries.  I got all the way to 1980, and frankly I got tired.  Imagine how tired Baines must be.  She lived through all this shit.

Well, my friends, it’s time for the 80s and beyond!  To the 21st century!  (Grab your bottle of Chateau D’Awesome and pour yourself a glass.)

1980: R.M.S. Titanic found. Leonardo DiCaprio is 6 years old.  James Cameron lies in wait. (See 1997.)

1980: John Lennon is shot.  People still pissed at Yoko for breaking up the Beatles.

1981: Pope John Paul II is shot.  Funny hat remains intact.

1981: Anwar Sadat, President of Egypt and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize is shot and killed.  Doesn’t bode well for the Middle East peace process.

1981: President Regan shot by John Hinckley, Jr.  Doesn’t bode well for Jodie Foster.

1981: MTV goes on the air and plays its very first video: “Video Killed the Radio Star” by the Buggles.  Except it didn’t really because MTV stopped playing videos almost immediately.  Why they continue to call themselves Music Television Network confuses me much in the way the little old lady was confused by minimal beef on her burger.  (See 1984.)

1981: Pop sensation Wham! formed.  They had a couple of hits, and then George Michael left Andrew Ridgeley hanging like a yo-yo when he forgot to wake Andrew up before he took off to go-go solo.

1982: Nancy Reagan encourages everyone to “just say no” to drugs.  Millions still continue to say “yes.”

1982: Michael Jackson releases Thriller and starts moonwalking to and fro.  Is still black.

1983: Swatch watch craze begins.  I wore 4 Swatch watches at one time.  I was CRAZY. In fact, fashion went berserk around this time.  Tretorns with little friendship (safety) pins chock full of little beads.  Backwards neon sweatshirts.  Jelly bracelets.  Sideways ponytails.  Z. Cavaricci.  Drakkar Noir.  Pegged acid-washed jeans.  Oh the humanity!

1983: Cyndi Lauper releases She’s So Unusual.  And boy, was she ever.  She told the world that girls just wanna have fun.  And we did!  She also informed the world: She bop–he bop–a–we bop; I bop–you bop–a–they bop; Be bop–be bop–a–lu–she bop; I hope he will understand; She bop–he bop–a–we bop; I bop–you bop–a–they bop; Be bop–be bop–a–lu–she bop; Oo–oo–she–do–she bop–she bop. Coyly implies that girls masturbate.  And we did! Basically… girls just wanna have fun, and sometimes playing DJ Diddles in your no-no area is fun.

1984: Ahhhhnnold.  Terminatah!  Dunh-dunh-dunh-da-dunh!  Dunh-dunh-dunh-da-dunh!  (Can everyone else hear the theme music in their head the way I can?)

1984: The Cosby Show airs and is a smashing success.  People are all like “What?  Upper middle class black folks?  A lawyer and a doctor?  Dyno-mite!!!” Paves way for such groundbreaking TV shows starring African-American casts as Martin, Moesha, and That’s So Raven.

1984: Wendy’s “Where’s the Beef” commercial airs making cute little confused old ladies totally hot right then.

1985: Gorbachev elected as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the USSR.  China remains US’s favorite communist country due to extreme soup dumpling deliciousness.  Speculation regarding strange purple splotch on Gorbachev’s head begins.

1984: Prince releases Purple Rain… the movie and the soundtrack.   (Wendy?  Yes, Lisa?  Is the water warm enough?  Yes, Lisa.  Shall we begin?  Yes Lisa…) With his hit song “Darling Nikki,” Prince dispenses with the “she-bop-a-lu-bop” innuendos and says it flat out: “I saw that bitch Nikki in the hotel lobby and she was masturbating with a magazine.  Seize her!”  Girls unclear whether to masturbate to a magazine or with a magazine; wary of paper cuts.

1984: Madonna releases Like a Virgin.  Millions of teenage girls start wearing one lace glove and wonder when they’ll get touched for the very first time.  Then they remember Cindi Lauper’s “she-bop-a-lu bop” call to masturbatory arms and continue touching themselves.  (See 1983.)   Confusion regarding Prince’s magazine scenario lingers.

1985: Hole in ozone layer discovered.  Australia blamed.

1985: Whitney Houston’s self-titled debut album is released.  Her greatest loooooooove of ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLL apparently is Bobby Brown.  And crack.

1986: Chernobyl nuclear plant accident.  Some Americans aware that correct pronunciation is not “noo-ky-ular.”  Others, not so much.

1986: The Oprah Winfrey Show debuts.  It’s pretty trashtastic in the beginning, but by 1996, she seems to have the female population in the palm of her hand and starts her book club:

You read what I tell you to read, and you read what I tell you to read!”

1987: Tiffany vs. Debbie Gibson.  THUNDERDOME!!

1987: Reagan yells at Gorbachev: “Tear down this wall!”  Gorbachev yells back “Fuck you, it’s a birth mark!”

1987: Gloria Estefan and her Miami Sound Machine releases hit album Let Loose.  Million of Americans fearful that, after shaking their body and doing that Conga, if they let loose, the rhythm would eventually get them.  Widespread panic ensues.

1989: Berlin Wall torn down, bitches!  German reunification begins.  World wonders if Germany ready to quit acting like a douche all the time.

1990: Julia Roberts wows everyone in Pretty Woman and teaches womankind a lesson– be a hooker and wait for some rich dude to come along and buy you a bunch of shit.  Then kiss him on the mouth.

1990: Iraq invades Kuwait.  Beginning of Persian Gulf War.  George Bush is all “a thousand points of light… no new taxes!  Sad-damn Hussein!  We should totally bomb Iraq!”  US is like, “sure, ok.”

1990: Nelson Mandela is released from jail after 27 years.

1991: Nelson Mandela elected President of South Africa.  Suck it, apartheid!

1991: Legendary jazz trumpeter Miles Davis dies.  Black folks are Kind of Blue about it.

1991: Gorbachev resigns as President of the USSR.  Collapse of the Soviet Union!  US wins the Cold War!  Gets antsy for new metaphorical war.  (See War on Terror, 2001.)

1991: Divinyls hit “I Touch Myself” is released.  A day late and a dollar short, y’all.  Bitches been touching themselves since She Bop. (See 1983).

1992: Clinton plays saxophone on the Arsenio Hall Show.  Crowd goes wild and elects him President.  In your face, George H.W. Bush!  Monica Lewinsky buys herself a pretty blue dress…you know… just in case.

1992: Rodney King gets his ass beat by the cops.  Somebody films it.  The four officers are tried and acquitted.  Uh-oh.  All hell breaks loose.  Now this is what I call a riot! Later, two of the four officers were tried and convicted in federal court.  Rodney got a 3.8 million dollar settlement.  Sixteen years later, he appears on Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew.  Apparently getting your ass beat by the po po makes you a celebrity.  So does doing nothing at all but being a herpes-laden douche (ahem, Paris Hilton).

1993: United States Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall dies.  We end up with Clarence Thomas.  Which sucks.

1993: Spielberg’s Schindler’s List opens in theaters.  The movie opens to critical acclaim.  Mr. Schindler’s list cemented as number one list on the Top Ten Best Lists.

1993: Clinton enacts “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy concerning gays in the military.   Seamen get nervous.  “In the Navy” pulled from all jukeboxes.

1993: Michael Jackson accused of being a child molester.  Is no longer black.  (See 1982.)

1994: OJ in a white Bronco leads police on a high-speed chase at 40 mph on the Los Angeles freeways.  Mesmerized, America watched… for hours.

1994: Rwandan genocides.  Nobody cares because, hey, they’re all black and there’s no oil or anything in Rwanda.

1995: OJ acquitted.  Black folks are all “hell yeah!”  White folks are all “oh hell naw!”  OJ smirkily slithers off to the golf course.

1995: Million Man March.  Black men descend on our nation’s capital.  Black women not invited.

1995: Timothy McVeigh bombs the Oklahoma City Federal Building.  It’s the last time the US cares about white terrorists.

1996: Gymnast Keri Strug does a kick ass vault with a busted ankle and lands on one foot and clinches gold medal for Team USA.  Bela Karolyi gives her big hug and carries her around and is generally a little creepy.

1997: Titanic makes teenage girls go wild.  Fans pissed off at Kate Winslet for not moving over and letting Leo climb up on that piece of wood.  Media proceeds to call her fat for ten years.  Probably unrelated.

1998: “I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky.”  Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.  Sales of blue dresses plunge.

1999: It’s Britney, bitch.  “…Baby One More Time” released.  Teenagers and drag queens go nuts.

1999: Al Gore invents the internet.  Good job, Al! Now can you do something about those pesky boy bands?

2000: George W. Bush wins Republican nomination.  Democrats are all “Pfft! We got this.”

2000: Al Gore wins Democratic nomination.  Makes out with Tipper at the Democratic National Convention.  The United States throws up in its mouth a little.  (Not having been coined at this time, that particular phrase is not yet annoying.)

2000: Bush v. Gore.  Florida fucks up everything.  Bush wins.  Gore and America lose.

2001: September 11.  Fuck.  Tragedy strikes paving way for the government to pass the Patriot Act, invade the wrong fucking country, and slowly chip away at our civil liberties.   Racist assholes set their sights on Arab folks.  Black folks finally get a little breathing room.

2001: George Bush names Colin Powell Secretary of State making Powell the first African-American to hold that position.  Ends up sort of sucking at the job, what with the lying to the UN about the existence of WMDs in Iraq and all.  Condi Rice succeeds Powell.  Also sort of sucks at the job.

2001: United States declares war on Terror.  This war makes as much sense as the War on Drugs.

2001: Denzel Washington wins an Oscar for Best Actor for his role in Training Day because the Academy fucked up and didn’t give him one for Malcolm X.  Academy also gives Oscar for Best Actress to Halle Berry for her role in Monster’s BallShe blubbers and sort of makes an ass of herself, but it’s touching nonetheless, I guess. It’s Black Appreciation Year!  Holla!

2003: US invades Iraq.  It didn’t make sense then and it doesn’t make sense now.

2003: Actress Katharine Hepburn dies at the age of 96.  Our girl Gertrude is still alive 11 years later.  (Sidenote: Katharine Hepburn kicks ass.  If you don’t believe me, check this clip and this clip.)

2004: Bush wins again because Kerry puts the country to sleep.

2005: Michael Jackson is acquitted of child molestation.  Is not only no longer black, but also a total fucking weirdo.  (See 1982 and 1993.)

2005: The asshole who murdered Medgar Evers in 1964, Edgar Ray Killen is convicted on the 41st anniversary of the crime.  Revenge justice is a dish best served cold… with a side of prison butt secks.

2006: Hannah Montana debuts on the Disney Channel.  It’s Miley! And she won’t fucking go away.

2006: Al Gore tries to sell this whole global warming business to the world with his documentary An Inconvenient Truth. Wins an Academy Award and the Nobel Prize just to be a douche and rub it in our stupid faces. Whatever, Al.  Sometimes polar ice caps just melt.  And I like being able to drive a Hummer in a city knowing full well that I will never need it to go off roading.  Suck on my tailpipe.

November 4, 2008: Gertrude Baines votes for the first Black President, Mr. Barack Obama.  Huzzah!

OBAMA WINS!  OBAMA WINS!!!

November 5, 2008: Gertrude Baines presumably thinks “Well, I never thought I’d see the day.”

Me neither, Gertie.  Me neither.


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April 11, 2009 - Posted by | Angry Black Lady Chronicles, Wistful Lists | , ,

8 Comments »

  1. Wary of papercuts. My god woman, I am still laughing. Bravo Ms. Madness, bravo.

    Comment by Deimos | April 11, 2009 | Reply

  2. Unbelievable. “Bitches been touching themselves since She Bop. (See 1983).” Shut up, you are hilarious!

    I’d like to add that I didn’t ever know where “Where’s The Beef?” actually came form, so this was highly educational for me.

    I remember thinking the OJ car chase was the one significant event in history that I would witness, and that it was what my children would one day quiz me about to no end. I felt shame that all I would be able to say was, “I got bored and started playing Uno.”

    Comment by baby fish mouth | April 11, 2009 | Reply

  3. Well done STM, well done. You would get an A+ in my book! By the way, Purple Rain is the best movie soundtrack EVER.

    Comment by missmeeky | April 12, 2009 | Reply

  4. missmeeky- i couldn’t agree more. i was recently hanging out with a woman who is 22. in the car, i had the purple rain soundtrack cd playing… darling nikki. she says “what’s this?” i almost had a heart attack. we are now living in a world where full grown adults don’t understand the GENIUS that is the purple rain soundtrack. it makes me sad.

    🙂

    Comment by stopthemadness | April 12, 2009 | Reply

  5. If you read this while listening to “We Didn’t Start The Fire,” your head will explode.

    Comment by MalisInWonderland | April 13, 2009 | Reply

  6. Run OJ, RUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUN. I’m pretty sure that the smell of teen spirit could kill the scent of electric youth any day of that week. That joke would have killed in 1989.

    Comment by cookiebees | April 13, 2009 | Reply

  7. I used to babysit Gertude Baines. She was such a cute baby.

    True Story.

    Comment by queencrone | April 13, 2009 | Reply

  8. Totally awesome!

    Comment by TheHobo | April 13, 2009 | Reply


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