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  • Writer's pictureMichael Apollo Lira

The 10-Year Hangover

I was born in the 80s. I always jokingly call the 1980s the ten year hangover that happened after the wild and crazy 60s and 70s.

When you look at images of the 1980s on the surface, you have these weird, boxy shapes everywhere…everything looks clunky. The makeup is excessive. The hair is scary – bad mullets, occasional good mullets, super perms, not-so-super perms, terrible mustaches…the list goes on. I just think of a hungover person struggling to navigate their way through an entire decade.

But the more I learn about the 80s, the more awesomeness (and scariness) there was under the hood to it all. I’m finally starting to warm up to the music that came from the decade. It’s really quirky and fun in its own way and brand. Some of that music was weird as hell but it really grows on you! I finally (as in the last couple months) started being comfortable saying: I like The Talking Heads.

And they are friggin’ weird, man.

I’m also coming to realize that “#hangover” might not be the best word to describe the 80s. Namely because the drug trade started to really, really boom back then and things got dark. If the 80s were a hangover, it was quickly masked by whatever cocaine brought to the table by one particular Uncle #Escobar – and then later compounded by crack. Speaking of crack (please don't start your thoughts like this, people). If you guys like Breaking Bad, check out the FX series Snowfall... Seriously, I’ll wait!

The other weird thing I’ll always think of in regards to the #1980s is the #technology. The pace that things were moving in the world of tech was juuuust starting to pick up. Most technological products lacked a certain aesthetic that we see today. Technology wasn’t sleek and #sexy; it was boxy and clunky. Sharp corners, edges, squares…polygons on a good day. And the color grey was everywhere. The foundation was still being built for a lot of the world in technology what we know today, and it had the grace of your clumsy early adolescence.

All that aside, I do believe there were a couple of gems in the rough of it all. Products that absolutely nailed that fine balance of 80s boxy, grey strangeness with just the right amount of charm and allure. Two of those items include the #DeLorean...

...and #Nintendo. The Nintendo Entertainment System - ie #NES - ie OG/old school Nintendo (etc etc etc), hit the market in all of its #oldschool gloriousness in this era.

Look at that grey clunky beauty. If there’s one thing to me personally that personifies technology in the 80s by everything that I described earlier, this baby is it. And I was crazy about it.

There’s something absolutely charming about how wonderfully it performed within its limitations that’s still loved today. You see it in the prolific troves of #pixelart still being produced. Not only that, but people (especially #indie teams) are creating games based on that era – games with simple and yet fun pixel graphics and sprites; and it adds its own unique type of depth and immersion because of that! You hear it in the use of simple #synth and sounds that are incorporated into modern music. And you get to sample that #nostalgia and love that is put into the documentaries that are regularly being created, paying tribute and homage to an older era in video games.

And of course, it’s a big part of the foundation of my passion for #voiceacting and what I’ve chosen to do with my website and style here (possible understatement there).

So! Time went on and technology evolved as you are all well aware. Newer hardware facilitated better graphics - and scientists actually managed to find a way to fit a live hedgehog inside of a microprocessor to help things run faster! Yeah! A live hedgehog! Oddly enough, it was discovered that something in that process turns hedgehogs blue.

But that’s a discussion for another time – those were the 90s, dude.

Thanks for tuning in – I’ve got plenty more fun and nostalgic content coming.

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