Thursday, August 24, 2017

Random 80's Photo Shoot.

I was going through a box of photos from my mom's house, when I came across this beauty..

Let's take a closer look at this piece of photographic history, shall we?

I honestly have no context for the how, where, or why of this photo. Well, that's not true, I know the "why". My mom could never have enough pictures of me. When it was school picture time, I had better bring that order form home, or there would have been hell to pay. I'm guessing this was one year I mucked things up, and she wasn't able to get her 304 different sized photos of me making the same stupid face. One year they managed to take my photo just as I blinked, capturing me with my eyes half open. My mom still spent about $65 on a photo package that year, even though I looked like I had decided to take a nap mid-snapshot.

So, we know the why. The "where", I'm not so sure about. I bet you five dollars that it was one of those rinky dink photo studios that you sometimes find in malls. That backdrop, and the fake phycus certainly look the part. And what is that I'm sitting on? A crate? A desk? It definitely looks like a desk, which if that's the case, it was made for the world's smallest CEO. Just look at me. There's no way I would be able to sit at that thing and take an international business call from Japan. I do like that spinning globe though. I always wanted one for my room. I probably told people it was so I could learn all the countries, when I really just wanted to use it as a prop for when my bad guy action figures tried to destroy the planet.

Looking back, I used to always be so embarrassed by my clothes. I never really had much say in what I wore, and it wasn't unusual for my mom to go school clothes shopping without me. I suspect it was in an effort to keep me from whining about having to try on so many pants, or to keep me from running off to the toy aisles.  So, I might not know what I was going to be wearing until it was too late to protest.

This sweater looks like it was a result of one of my mom's shopping excursions. I hated sweaters. They were always so hot, stuffy, and itchy as hell. If I had known what asbestos was back then, I would have sworn that all my sweaters were made from it. As for the design on the sweater, the longer I look at it, the more crazy creatures I see. Right now, I see what looks like a ghost on my right arm, and the Grim Reaper just next to it. It looks like those pictures of a spider's web after they've been exposed to psychotropic drugs. This is the kind of design that would freak me out if I were to see it in the moonlight. This sweater would give Freddy Krueger nightmares.

The pants are nothing special, most likely a pair of Bugle Boys, because that's all I used to wear back then. No, let's talk about those shoes for a minute. Reebok and Nike sneakers were always too expensive, so I always had to go for the cheaper brands. If you looked at my feet when I was 7-10 years old, I was almost certainly wearing a pair of Etonics, La Gear, or, as is the case in this photo, Voit. Looking at those shoes, I find it hard to believe my mom took me to get my picture taken, and allowed me to wear those dirty and worn sneakers. I bet she was under the impression that my feet wouldn't be seen, or I had managed to sneak out of the house before she noticed I was wearing my weekend shoes. Since getting my pictures taken by a stranger in a mall probably wasn't on a list of things I'd ever want to do, I'll consider that a small victory for me.

Now, we get to the real reason I'm writing this post. I was actually in the process of putting a bunch of photos away, when I that black circle caught my eye. At first, I thought I was wearing a huge ring, but when I looked a little closer, I saw something even cooler: Super Naturals Thunder Bolt. I still remember when I got that figure. It was Christmas, likely 1987 or 1988, and I found a bunch of large rectangular boxes under the tree. They looked like the kinds of boxes that would hold clothes, only bigger. Well, each of those boxes contained almost all of the Visionaries and Super Naturals figures. I got all but one of the Super Naturals, with Lionheart being the only figure missing from the collection. That didn't matter to me, because I just got a shit ton of action figures in one shot. If you don't remember or don't know what the Super Naturals were, they were action figures that had a hologram in place of their chest and face. Move them back and forth in the light, and the hologram would shift between their "human" form and their monstrous form. Some of them were spooky enough that I didn't really like to look at them while I was playing.

I don't remember having any real attachment to Thunder Bolt, but here we have evidence that I liked him enough to carry him out in public, AND get photographed while awkwardly holding him by my crotch. The more I think about this photo, the more questions I have about my chosen figure. I had so many toys by this point, that I can't imagine how I decided on one of them. I really picked Thunder Bolt over Spikor or Moss Man? Were all my Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles busy that day? Did my mom pick out the clothes and the toy? Was I supposed to bring a toy, or was that the only way I would go along with this whole plan without kicking and screaming? So many questions left unanswered..

I hope you enjoyed this trip down my memory lane. I'm glad you were able to partake in my bad fashion, and excellent choice in action figures.


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Nathan. It's much appreciated buddy.

  2. LOL!It's like an episode of the Goldbergs.And Etonics?!!I forgot all about those!

    1. i definitely see a lot of my life in that show. Then again, I guess a lot of us that grew up then can say the same thing.

      I actually had a pair of Etonics knockoffs of Air Jordans. I was a little disappointed when they didn't help my vertical game.

  3. I'm very tempted to go grab some of my own, haha.

    1. Go for it! Might have to search on eBay for them though.


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