So today marks the 30th Anniversary of the introduction of Cabbage Patch Kids on an unsuspecting world. An event which was marked by hitherto unprecedented levels of demand created by a massive ad campaign, punctuated by crazy scenes of parents going to any length to secure a doll for their brat. So not only am I surprised that they are STILL selling these dolls, but I feel really old because I remember 30 years ago when they first started to sell them, which made me think, that else do I remember the introduction of?
Digital Watches. I remember when they were the MOST cool thing to have, and all they did was tell the time, then new digital watches came out that told the time, and if you pressed a button, they told you the date too! Incredible and heady stuff. Then some gas (petrol) station gave away a digital watch with every so many gallons of fuel, and all of a sudden everybody had a digital watch.
Microwaves. I remember the revolution in home cooking that was the microwave. When our home acquired the new fangled wizardry, complete with two vague twisty knobs which could be anywhere between a minute and three depending on if you twisted it ahead and then back a little, or not. One of the first things my mother warmed up was some croissants, I think she put them in for about five minutes. the smoke was quite acrid, I can still recall how it stung my eye.
But the microwave incident I remember most clearly was before that, it was the first time my family ever had used one. When I was younger, my parents use to be part of a club where you could swap houses with another family, so you could go places and save on hotels. The idea was that you would use the exchange to find someone where you wanted to go, who wanted to go where you are. At the time we lived in ______________ on the south coast of England, about a five-minute walk from the sea front. So it was quite a popular place to go, we had no trouble finding people who wanted to swap with us. We had been to Stockholm this way, and a couple of times we swapped with a family who lived in Greenwich. They had a lovely town house, and that’s where I first remember having Earl Grey Tea, which seemed terrible sophisticated and London to me. Well along with the Earl Grey, they also had a microwave, and in the morning, mum wanted to cook dad an egg to go with his soldiers ( that is pieces of buttered toast cut into sticks so you can dunk it in your soft-boiled egg ). So instead of boiling the egg on the stove, dad talked her into using the new fangled microwave thingi, of which there was no instruction booklet, so they were both just guessing, they put the egg in a microwave safe bowl, with some water, and boiled it for about ten minutes. miracle of miracles, the egg did not explode inside the microwave, and it was placed in an egg cup in front of dad. With his soldiers ready and waiting, he cut off the top to the egg, and Mt. Vesuvius erupted. I would never have guessed so much superheated egg could fit in so small a shell, the pressure must have been incredible. Dad was seated at a small round breakfast table, and the entire table was covered with pieces of egg, we all jumped back as it erupted, in fear of the egg lava spewing out of the shell. So more eggshells, if you have been following my previous blogs, quite a theme emerging, or eggmerging perhaps.