Thursday, December 20, 2012

The d20 Dark Ages in Context: 1989

Writing this blog has brought up a lot of memories. One thing just leads to another. I think I first Kevin Arnold from the Wonder Years, which was on TV during my early years in D&D. D&D has definitely impacted my life, but a lot more important things were going on in 1989. I remember a lot of this stuff, yet some of it I had to look up on Wikipedia and was like "oh yeah, that happened in 1989, I thought it was earlier (or later.)"
mentioned this when I compared my middle school self to

Maybe these lists will bring back some memories for you too:

Politcal Events
President Reagan left office that January, George H. W. Bush takes office.
The Soviets leave Afghanistan.
The World Wide Web was invented in Switzerland by Tim Berners Lee.
Communism in Eastern Europe also begins to collapse
Tianemen Square protests and massacre.
Robert Tappan Morris, Jr. is the first person to be prosecuted for unleashing a computer virus.
"The Forgotten Woodstock"--participants brought their own supplies and had to barter with each other.
Hurricane Hugo
Dalai Lama wins the Nobel Peace Prize
President Bush meets with Prime Minister Gorbechev, both agree that the Cold War is coming to an end.
US invades Panama
The Iron Curtain and the Berlin Wall collapse!
(The Information Age Begins...)

Music, Movies, and Popular Culture
Madonna's "Like A Prayer" music video debuts. Conservative groups hated it. But I still think its
"Express Yourself."
Madonna's best work, followed by
Michael Jackson named King of Pop, but even I noticed his "changes" since "Bad."
Janet Jackson's "Rhythm Nation"
Debbie Gibson's "Electric Youth"
Nine Inch Nails--Pretty Hate Machine
The Bangles--"Eternal Flame".
And New Kids on the Block were still "Hangin' Tough" and makin' me gag
Billy Joel's "We Didn't Start the Fire" gave me a nice history lesson.

Batman!
(And "Batdance," the car accident of a Prince song and video)
Field of Dreams, which was filmed in Dyersville, Iowa, near my hometown.
Honey I Shrunk the Kids
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
The Little Mermaid


Television Show Debuts
COPs
Seinfeld
Quantum Leap
Hey Dude
Saved by the Bell
Doogie Howser, M.D.
America's Funniest Home Videos
Baywatch
The Simpsons (yes, they've been around that long).




(I think cartoons really started going to crap by this time, probably because I was getting older).
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles debut in 1987, but the movie came out in 1989
Count Duckula
Duck Tales (woo-hoo...)
G. I. Joe was still around in syndication

Unfortunately, I don't remember the books I'd read in 1989. I know, by that time, I'd read The Hobbit, A Wrinkle in Time, some R. L. Stine children's horror books, most of The Chronicles of Narnia, and a bunch of the Choose Your Own Adventure books.

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What do you remember from your first year playing D&D? What stands out in your mind when you look back on that time? 


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