Dance, Sing and Drink Wine

Daily Necessities of Life – and Coffee Helps Too

Unsung Heros – MOMS of the 1970s and 80s

We children of the 1970s and 80s are way over celebrated.  Way over celebrated. We have all seen the FaceBook posts/rants about how careless our parents were for letting us sit in the front seat of the car without a seatbelt at the tender age of eleven or how we bravely survived bike crashes without helmets and padding. How did we survive?  Wah! Wah! Wah!

Puh-lease, crybabies! Quit you whiny-ass grouching!
You know who the real heroes of those days were?

They had none of the modern conveniences that we all so take for granted today (and would totally die without).


How long does that cord look to you? Because that's as far as you move, Missy!

How long does that cord look to you? Because that’s as far as you move, Missy!

First, they were tethered to the wall. They couldn’t move more than five feet from the wall jack!  Can you imagine?  There was no call-waiting or voicemail.  If the person they were trying to reach didn’t answer, all they heard was the lonely sound “ring-ring-ring-ring-ring-ring……..” or the wretched busy signal “ehh-ehh-ehh-ehh.” That busy sound was the worst.  It basically said, “The person you are calling is too busy talking to someone else to talk to you. Loser.

Most Moms used pencils to move the rotary dialer thing so as not to break a nail - no uber-strong gel nails back then!

Most Moms used pencils to move the rotary dialer thing so as not to break a nail – no uber-strong gel nails back then!

There was no calling people on the run with your cell phone. And can you imagine a life without texting?  KILL ME! Seriously, they had to talk to people they hated – in real time!!! And dial them up rotary style – HOW DREAD-FLIPPIN-FUL!

And can you imagine having to hold a receiver to you ear for an entire conversation? Speaker phones would have scared the shit out of my Mom back in the day! People would have heard her personal conversations! One thing 80s Moms had that we don’t is a sense of modesty. Then again, they couldn’t possibly update their FaceBook status while on a tethered wall phone with no touchscreen or speaker. I guess it’s six or half either way.


It's the story .... Of a crappy car .....

It’s the story …. Of a crappy car …..

80s Moms didn’t have the luxuries that SUV and Minivans give us today.   Can you imagine just the horrifying task of taking your kids to school thirty-five years ago? Let’s assume you were one of the station wagon driving mamas – preferably one with the wooden panels. Just for kicks, let’s pretend it’s the dead of winter too.

  • You start off by forcing one of your kids to go out to the garage and start the car for you — After you showed the kid which key was for the door and which was for the ignition. If your kid couldn’t/wouldn’t then you made the mad dash in to the cold as hell garage to do it yourself. If you were not lucky enough to have a garage, you had to stay out in the frozen tundra and scrape the ice off with those tiny ice scrapers (why they had not evolved enough to make the scrapers with longer handles back then is a mystery to this day).
  • Then, after it is warmed up and cleared of ice, frost and snow, you get in your side while the kids all stand at different doors yelling at you to get in and individually lean over to unlock the other doors – NO POWER LOCKS AND CERTAINLY NO ELECTRONIC FOBS, PRINCESS!
  • So, everyone is in the first two rows of the wagon, but everyone is still crying and complaining because there is no effing leg room and only the driver’s seat can manually be moved forward. I hope you’re not short, because tilt wheel is a luxury for Cadillacs, Shorty McPoorGirl! Don’t forget the phone book to sit on so you can see over the wheel!
  • Need to check your lipstick before you pull out? Better use the rearview or the side mirrors because the genius behind the visor-mirror is still in high school.
  • Is it still dark? Because if it is, you’ll have to MANUALLY turns your lights on. Do Moms of today even know how to do that? And, if you forget to turn them off ………. Buh-bye battery! Better make sure you have jumper cables in the back of the wagon, Susie-Qu! It’s a good thing you didn’t know the indulgence of regular manicures back then because you could really break a nail doing that shit.
  • Now, flex those biceps because steering back then was a bitch too. Power steering was a luxury that only the luckiest had.

    Dear God! This looks hard!

    Dear God! This looks hard!

  • If you’re lucky, you have more than one speaker for your AM/FM radio. “Satellite” was a word only used or understood by pimply-faced nerds (that’s right, no Proactive on the market yet, pizza face). And, if you’re really lucky, you don’t get in right as the 10-minute long commercial break starts and the reception is good so that your know-it-all oldest child (who gets the honor of sitting up front no matter what his/her age) doesn’t keep fidgeting with the knob to get it to come in better.

    Do you see any power bottons here, Precious? I don't think so!!!!!

    Do you see any power bottons here, Precious? I don’t think so!!!!!

  • Finally, you made it to the school. The kids get out and are nearly to the door when you see one lonely lunch sitting in the back seat. You push the button to roll down the window when you realize that YOU DON’T HAVE POWER WINDOWS! How in the hell are you supposed to let child #3 know his lunch is still in the car? You can’t call him back because you can’t reach that window to roll it down. You watch helplessly as he runs inside lunchless. Oh Shit! You have to drive around, find a parking space, run the lunch in yourself and get nothing more than a, “MOM! Why didn’t you tell me?” from said kid.
  • And now “That” Mom has you cornered in the school office. You know, the one who always wants a piece of you for something you have no time for? You could pretend to be on the phone, but you still don’t have a cell phone. That won’t work. What about asking her to email you the scope of the fundraiser, except – STILL NO EMAIL OR EVEN INTERNET! Cah-rap! Looks like you’re going to have to stand there and have a real conversation with this person. Imagine the horror of a real spoken conversation about a topic in which you want to avoid! Spoken out and in real time. Like with your voice!!!! Holy shape shifters! That had to be petrifying. Time to call on the interpersonal skills that died slowly in the 1990s.
  • Shit Marge! Run for the car and be prepared to scrape it off again before making your escape back home!

Social Media Help

And sure as a ships sails on Sundays, can someone please explain to me how in the flippity flop our mothers learned to do anything without the added advantage of seminars, blogs, classes and an entire weekend worth of speakers like MommyCon? Seriously? Where did they learn to change diapers?  From their own mothers and from babysitting jobs when they were teens? That seems rudimentary, doesn’t it? No wonder they smoked like chimneys and had tequila sunrises and fuzzy navels at noon!

Yeah. I'd like to think that even if Moms of the 80s had time for these types of groups, they'd figure it was time better spent interacting with their own children and husbands instead.

Yeah. I’d like to think that even if Moms of the 80s had time for these types of groups, they’d figure it was time better spent interacting with their own children and husbands instead. If you need social time, get a bottle of wine and plan a night with the girls for some REAL support!

What about all the support groups we now turn to on all the social media sites? You know, the ones we really use to find people who have it worse than us so we can make ourselves feel better? You know you’ve check them out. DON’T PRETEND YOU HAVEN’T!

I guess breastfeeding just had to come naturally to our Moms since they couldn’t go learn from the likes of blogs such as, “The Leaky Boob,” and any number of YouTube videos that teen boys also use as entry-level porn these days.


Who else just got a headache just looking at these dresses?

Who else just got a headache just looking at these costumes dresses?

But let’s face it. Moms back then are really our heroes because somehow they managed to keep it all together without the conveniences of electronics to pacify a bratty kid, automatic settings and timers on every imaginable appliance, and all-consuming smart phones all while weighed down in the most ridiculous outfits and glorified Aquanet-styled hair.

Hit me with your best shot!!!!!!!!!!! Fire awaaaaayyyyyy!!!!!!!!!!

Hit me with your best shot!!!!!!!!!!! Fire awaaaaayyyyyy!!!!!!!!!!

And no wonder our Moms dressed in those ridiculous aerobics outfits so as to be allowed in to classes at the over-priced likes of Ballys and Fitness USA.  They had to do aerobics if they wanted to lug those shoulder pads around all day!

What Do YOU Think?

Let’s face it, as kids of the 1970s and 80s, we had a blast. My daughter recently asked me how I could spend an entire summer day hitting a tennis ball up against a garage door. As I put down my iPhone to look at her, I told her I wish I still could.

23 comments on “Unsung Heros – MOMS of the 1970s and 80s

  1. Carol Hoffman
    March 23, 2015

    This was fun, funny and pretty right on!

  2. Jaime
    March 24, 2015

    That’s hilarious! I was born in 86, so I totally get the phone thing. I played video games all day though, so I was still a slave to technology. 🙂

    • Julie Smith
      March 24, 2015

      Geez! I was a sophomore in HS when you were born! You totally missed pong!

  3. Dana Brillante-Peller
    March 24, 2015

    Everything you mentioned is SO TRUE! Brought me down memory lane 🙂

  4. Funny post!

  5. Katie Ross
    March 24, 2015

    This is great! And so true! I am so blessed that we have the social media support groups nowadays!

  6. birdhousebooks
    March 24, 2015

    Fun and funny post! Loved the pics, too.

    • Julie Smith
      March 24, 2015

      Thanks! I laughed so hard while choosing the pictures. There’s a lot out there.

  7. Justine Y
    March 24, 2015

    I definitely agree, I think about all the nice “necessities” we have and how sometimes I take them for granted! We recently got a minivan that has the doors that open when you push a button, and I thought I’d died and went to heaven!

    • Julie Smith
      March 24, 2015

      OMG! Me too! But one of our doors broke or something tight sfter we passed 36,000 miles. It’s an $1,100 fix, so it’s not happening right now. My kids apologize to their friends like we’re lepers!

  8. I found this post to be pretty hilarious and truthful. As someone that was not born until the late 80s it is neat to take a look back and how different things were then as they are now. Thanks for sharing!

    • Julie Smith
      March 24, 2015

      Late 80s? Wow. That’s when I graduated high school. Be glad you missed the shoulder pads, ha ha!

  9. Camesha
    March 25, 2015

    Man, I’m old! I remember all of this! LOL! Those were the good days. 🙂

    • Julie Smith
      March 25, 2015

      I do miss the simplicity – even if it was the “decade is excess!”

  10. Shauna Krantz
    March 25, 2015

    brings back memories!

  11. musingsbythebay
    March 25, 2015

    hahaha. The phone! It took forever just to dial on rotary phones!

  12. Lisa @ Fun Money Finds
    April 11, 2015

    Wow…so glad I discovered your blog!!! Not only do I love the name (mostly because I’m usually found doing all three) but this post was hilarious! I’m going to share via facebook and can’t wait to see what you post next!

    P.S. Found you via the Blogging On The Side FB page.

    • Julie Smith
      April 12, 2015

      Lisa! Thanks so much. I really appreciate you letting me know how you found me too. Obviously, you understand that’s important information for us to know. I really appreciate the share. Are you on blog lovin?

  13. UrbLife
    April 12, 2015

    haha! See this is great – only on UrbLife I’d tell this from the angle of being the kid and how all this influenced us. Generation X stories are the best!

  14. Katie
    April 20, 2015

    This is great, thanks for posting!

    xo katie // a touch of teal

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