retro

All posts tagged retro

Youngsters Do Vinyl

Published June 30, 2019 by Maryanne

SinglesMy tattoo of the 45 rpm spindle

If I had a nickle for every middle-aged or old person who stopped me in the street and commented on my tattoo, “I bet young people don’t know what that is,” I’d have a hellavu lot of nickles. It’s almost as bad as people asking me, “How’s Gilligan?” whenever I say my name is Maryanne.

I’ve never been a fan of redundant comments, especially when they are incorrect.

Allow me to school MY generation (Generation X), and those who are slightly older (Baby Boomers)…

YOUNG PEOPLE LISTEN TO VINYL.

Yes, they do! This is not something I am making up. It’s a fact.

My husband and I are vinyl listeners and buy on a regular basis. We score records online, in record stores, and in antique/vintage shops. We always see young people buying vinyl. On Record Store Day there are more young people around to buy vinyl than older people. Young bands put out vinyl records. And they’ve been doing so for some time now.

Here’s a link to a recent article about the vinyl revival: https://www.classicfm.com/discover-music/millennials-are-going-nuts-for-vinyl-revival/

But I didn’t need an article to tell me that. In my line of work (writing/journalism/speaking) or even shopping for groceries, I chat with many young people who share their love for vinyl with me. Most of them get their vinyl/music passion from their cool parents. We’re living in a time where the generation gap is closer than ever. Kids are no longer at war with their parents. They bond. They do things together (especially going to concerts). So of course they share the same taste in music. That’s not surprising at all. Thanks to tribute bands, rock movies, radio stations that didn’t cave in to modern music yet, Sirius, You Tube, and many music stream stations, kids are exposed to the good stuff. Plus, there are so many bands around that emulate music from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Like all good things, you may have to dig for it, but it’s there.

Maybe 15 years ago young people disrespected parents, and older people in general. When I was in my late 30s and early 40s, I truly felt a gap from those 15, 10, and even seven years younger than me. It was uncomfortable and not fun. But young people today are the best younger generation ever. As a 50-something adult, I have to say I’ve never enjoyed talking to 20-somethings as much as I do now!

From those 30 and younger I’ve heard amazing things like:

“I’m sick of texting and considering giving up my phone.”

“Don’t underestimate me because I’m young. My parents have a record player in the basement.”

And in response to me sharing my story about oldsters commenting on my spindle tattoos, saying that young people don’t know what it is: “Of course I know what it is. How old do they thing my parents are?”

Young people checking out vinyl is also a matter of curiosity and exploration. During evolution, we have set backs, but life becomes full circle again. Young people have ears just like we do. They want to explore the sound on a record. Young people see a movie about Queen and they want more than what is just spoon-fed to them. Like it was when I was young, they want the records, they want the liner notes. It’s not just about Freddie Mercury and Queen’s greatest hits, they want to hear the deeper tracks.

For a very long time, we were experiencing a me-me-me generation. But that’s now a thing of the past too. In a month, I’ve had several young people ask me questions about my life, rather than just talk about themselves. This new generation is flipping the switch to something more positive and genuine. So why wouldn’t they listen to something more authentic like vinyl?

So, to all my middle-aged peers…

If you see someone cool in your age bracket with a 45-rpm spindle tattooed on them (and there are many — since I got mine in 1996, I’ve met at least three people with the same tattoo!) think twice before inserting foot in mouth…

  • I’m not dating myself. Young people know what a spindle is. And I predict within the next three years you’ll see young people getting spindle tattoos themselves.
  • Young people are COOL. Give them a chance and pay some attention to them!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

 

Stay Wild — Wildwood, New Jersey

Published September 7, 2017 by Maryanne

DSCF0144The gorgeous, retro, Starlux Hotel

Of all the places to travel, the one place I keep going back to is New Jersey’s Wildwoods. This hot vacation spot really does have it all. Whether you want to relax in the pool or hot tub — or on the beach; or enjoy nightlife, the boardwalk, and good eats, it’s just pure magic. People come from all over the world to vacation here. I’ve been coming here since I was a little kid and am always happy to come back again and again and again with my husband; even off season!

DSCF0101Outdoor patio at Epicure

Of course vacationers can pig out on every kind of Boardwalk food you can imagine, but I preferred the healthy route. It’s awesome when you can come home from a vacation weighing less than you did when you left for vacation! And Epicure really did the trick enticing my healthy palate. It was one of my favorite dining spots on the trip. I had a vegetarian chili with a beautiful salad, that featured the best miso dressing I ever had in my life.

DSCF0110Salad at Epicure

DSCF0158Beach Creek Oyster Bar & Grill

And then for even more good food and a nice dose of romance, head over to Beach Creek Oyster Bar & Grill and watch the sunset. Hint: If you don’t want to wait for a table inside, just go out back for appetizers. I had a huge salad of shrimp and lump crab meat; and a half dozen oysters, which satisfied and filled me. I never saw a restaurant that had an appetizer list three pages long.

DSCF0074Morey’s Piers

And, of course, you can’t forget the super long boardwalk, with several piers of amusements. It’s the best at night, when it’s all lit up. Check out that full moon in the background!

DSCF0078

Wildwood is known for preserving it’s mid-century aka “doo wop” architecture, which is why vacationing in the Wildwoods is more than a vacation — it’s a transport back in time.

DSCF0168Two-tiered Merry Go Round

These photos do no justice to the greatness that is The Wildwoods. You’ll just have to visit and see for yourself.

And for other Wildwood enthusiasts, I leave you with five famous words — “Watch the tram car please!”

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award winning journalist and three-time author. A lover of retro, her fictitious book “Love Cats” takes place in the 1980s. Get your copy of “Love Cats” on Amazon today: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YBGVJQS/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

 

 

Teens and Twenties in the ’80s!

Published September 19, 2016 by Maryanne

1980-punk-rocker1980 – 16-year-old punk rocker

1980 was a great time to be alive — and young! So much great music was exploding on the scene. In fact, so much that I’m still catching up on the more obscure stuff.

At 16 I was really into The Clash. I was lucky to see them at The Capitol Theatre, in Passaic, NJ. The earrings I’m wearing in this picture I scored at Trash & Vaudeville in NYC.

1981-18-the-clashAge 18, 1981

The end of 1981, I was still loving punk rock. Now I had my hair bleached blonde in honor of the blonde beauties of the day like Debbie Harry and Nancy Spungeon.

1982-cosmo19 in 1982

In 1982 I was trying for the new romantic look, though I never quite nailed it.

19851985, me to the right … Hair is getting bigger in The Bahamas

pharoah-show-with-sibel

1986, me on the right

The above shot was taken at a nightclub in NYC. I was part of the stage show for 1980s glam rock legends Pharoah.

1987-with-tiny-tim

1987, at a NYC nightclub … I just had to introduce myself to the legendary Tiny Tim! 

1980s-modeling

1988 modeling

goth-years

1989 and so begins my gothic years

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of “Love Cats” — an erotic fiction love story that takes place in the 1980s. “Love Cats” is available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions:  https://www.amazon.com/Love-Cats-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta/dp/1681020513

Going, Going, Gone! What the Next Generation Won’t Remember

Published August 5, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_5528Does any of this stuff look familiar?

Here you have it! My grandmother’s suitcase from the 1960s, that I still use! (Hey, it’s easy to spot on the airline conveyor belt. Do you want to hang out in an airport all night? I don’t!); cassettes, view master, Howard Johnsons bond, speaker from Drive-in, KISS bubble gum cards, my first cell phone from 2001, and 45 rpm with spindle

My “Going, Going, Gone: What the Next Generation Won’t Remember” was a hit last night! Thanks so much to Sayreville Library for having me! I had people in the audience as young as 8 and as old as 72!

For more information on lectures available to present at libraries, women’s groups, assisted living facilities, JCCs and more, visit www.peartreeenterprises.com

Rates are reasonable. All lectures are fun, upbeat and audience inter-active!

S.C. Miotto Release Party “Diamond Love”

Published June 8, 2014 by Maryanne

SAM_4810S.C. Miotto and daughter Leah, and Me

Today was the release of “Diamond Love” by S.C. Miotto, available on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Diamond-Love-Moonstone-Dreams-Miotto-ebook/dp/B00KPJEI9K

It was an honor and pleasure to work closely with Stefanie Claire again, editing her second book.

The party was held today at Whiskey Cafe in Lyndhurst, New Jersey — with vendors indoors and a giant antique flea market outdoors.

I had so much fun being a vendor there, selling my book, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” and making new contacts for other possible book editing projects.

SAM_4811Let’s go!

SAM_4807My husband Dennis scored an old copy of Creepy!

Dennis found some great finds outside — a copy of Creepy, a Peter Max chalk board, and other goodies!

SAM_4804With Wendy Basile (seated) of DecoTrash and Cherie Hums

Great getting to meet Wendy and seeing Cherie again. I’m a fan of DecoTrash — I’m now the proud owner of three cuffs! And plan on getting more! Check out the goodies here: https://twitter.com/decotrash

SAM_4818I love this little fox statuette Dennis found for me.

SAM_4821Enjoying great conversation with Joy

SAM_4825

On the Guest List can be purchased on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

SAM_4827I love it!

Most Loving Mom in the Movies

Published May 11, 2013 by Maryanne

Juanita MooreJuanita Moore as Annie Johnson in “Imitation of Life” (1959)

The other day I did a blog post about the meanest moms in the movies. Now, in honor of Mother’s Day tomorrow, I present to you the most loving mom in the movies: Juanita Moore as Annie Johnson in “Imitation of Life.”

Moore played a supporting role to Lana Tana who played Lora Meredith the lead character who was a widow with dreams of becoming a famous actress. Lora’s daughter was Susie, played by Sandra Dee. Moore was a divorced woman, with child, Sarah Jane played by Susan Kohner. When Susie and Sarah Jane were little, they became friends on the beach. Their mothers also became friends and Lora let Annie and Sarah Jane come live with them to keep her and little Susie company and Annie agreed to watch the kids while Lora pursued her acting career.

As years went on, Annie served as nanny, housekeeper and best friend/confident to Lora. Lora’s career started to climb.

While Lora and her daughter Susie have their issues, Sarah Jane has her own troubles, becomes extremely rebellious and puts her mother through a living hell — all while pretending her mother isn’t really her mother because Sarah Jane wants to be white, not black.

Here’s a scene from the movie where Sarah Jane is very cruel to her mother:

Annie does everything she can to try to keep her daughter on the straight and narrow, but selfish Sarah Jane wants nothing to do with her. Annie loves her child with all her heart and soul and goes through desperate measures to try to win Sarah Jane’s love. Eventually Annie’s health deteriorates due to a broken heart because of her daughter disowning her … I’m not telling the ending, but if you want to know Google “Imitation of Life.”

The story is a beautiful tear-jerker and Moore’s character was the only one who was giving amongst all selfish people. I highly recommend this movie if you haven’t seen it already. It’s a great movie to watch on Mother’s Day. It will definitely make you appreciate your mom more than ever. I watched this beautiful movie a few times with my late Grandmother who was just as unconditionally loving as Moore’s character.

In 1959 Juanita Moore was the fifth African American to be nominated for an Academy Award. She is still alive today — age 90!

We’re Having a Ball!

Published January 31, 2013 by Maryanne

Beach Ball 1930sCirca 1930s

Beach ball Elizabeth TaylorElizabeth Taylor

Beach Ball Florida PostcardRetro Florida post card

Beach ball marilynMarilyn Monroe

Yvonne Craig Beach BallYvonne Craig (my favorite!)

Maryanne summerAnd me (Jersey Shore,  2008)

 Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of “Love Cats” Kindle and paperback editions available on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YBGVJQS/

Gable & Lombard

Published January 7, 2013 by Maryanne

Gable & LombardBeautiful couple, the late Clark Gable & the late Carol Lombard in their home

Several months ago I watched “Gable & Lombard” on On Demand.

I remember seeing that movie in the theater with my mother in the 1970s. It starred James Brolin and Jill Clayburgh. The movie was so well done in capturing your attention and making you fall in love with the characters, I was so excited to watch it again so many years later.

After watching the movie this time, I Googled the real Gable & Lombard and it seems the movie was true to real life. Carol Lombard really was the love of Clark Gable’s life.

I found so many gorgeous photos of them, but being an animal lover, the above is my absolute favorite.

 

Another Fun Time at Dead Man’s Curve

Published September 2, 2012 by Maryanne

Hotel Entrance

Dead Man’s Curve is an off the hook hot rod fun-filled event where you can expect: celebrities, the most amazing cars, the best in rockabilly, old friends, drinking — in other words, a lot of fun!

My husband and I started going to the Dead Man’s Curve parties a few years ago and try not to miss them. We got to this one rather late, as it was in Mahwah, an hour drive from our home, and I was sad that we missed The Tarrantinos perform, but we had a blast regardless!

Check out the Eddie Munster doll in the back seat!

My husband (Dennis), Pat Priest (actress, Marilyn Munster) and me!

It was a thrill meeting Pat Priest, a 1960s beauty queen who was in the Elvis movie, “Easy Come, Easy Go.” She is best known as the second “Marilyn” on The Munsters!

This woman was such a doll, the salt of the earth. She was so happy to meet her fans and had a very strong, impressive handshake (and I told her so!)

We also met Butch Patrick (“Eddie Munster”) for the second time. He was super and gave us a free autographed photo of himself. Very nice guy. Both times we met Butch, he made a Gilligan’s Island reference when learning my name is “Maryanne.” I confessed, both times, that I was a Ginger wannabe.

He was so cute hanging around with Pat Priest, as if he is still her TV little brother! Which makes you realize it’s so sad that Pat Priest and Butch Patrick are the only Munsters cast members that are alive. (RIP: Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo and Al Lewis). That legendary television show, on a steady rotation in our home!

Enjoy the rest of the photos! We look forward to the next event in March 2013!

Dennis

Viva Gia!

Published August 7, 2012 by Maryanne

1980s, first supermodel Gia Carangi

Cosmo Girl!

Natural

I have to be honest, I lived the 1980s but do not remember Gia Carangi, the famous supermodel.

Mind you, like Gia, I was also in my 20s at the time so a lot of cultural things slipped by me because I was making my own culture by dating, going to nightclubs and exploring — which is totally understandable for a 20-something. And don’t forget, we didn’t have a lot of the media we have now back then. There was no internet, no You Tube … and some families didn’t even have cable television; some still had b&w TV sets!

When I first heard of Gia, it was when I picked up the 1994 paperback edition of the book, “Thing of Beauty: The Tragedy of Supermodel Gia” by Stephen Fried, originally published in 1993.

I was mesmerized by the tragic story of a gorgeous Italian girl who rose to superstar status in the late 1970s, early 1980s fashion industry, and just a short time later died of AIDS in 1986.

The cool thing about Gia was — she was into cool things, like David Bowie and Blondie. She was in Blondie’s “Atomic” video. She was tough and throughout the book I thought she was like a fashionista version of Joan Jett.

A few years after I got the book, an HBO special came on about the life of Gia, staring Angelina Jolie. To me, that was Angelina’s best role ever. I loved the dark, sad movie. It effected me for days.

Well, last week Lifetime showed the movie again. I dug out my old “Thing of Beauty” book and started to re-read it.  I also looked up videos of Gia on You Tube and watched interviews. And a cold chill encompasses my body as I revisited the tragedy.

In my opinion, Gia was a fantastic model because her looks transformed her into a vast variety of different people. In Gia, at times I see: Julia Roberts, Janice Dickenson and Cindy Crawford.

And I also see, in Gia, some friends I had in the 1980s — not models, just normal pretty girls. I think that’s why Gia is so fascinating — on one hand she has the superior looks, but on the other hand, a sweet, simple vulnerability that all of us possess. That is what we’re relating to; we all just want to give her a hug.

During one of her last interviews, I felt she is being interrogated when asked about her drug use. Then Gia brought up drugs in food — which I felt was a genius move. Then the interviewer resorted to sarcasm by saying there isn’t cocaine in food.

Yeah, there isn’t cocaine in food, but other DRUGS that cause cancer, diabetes, obesity, etc. which can all lead to DEATH! With Gia being as tough as she was, I wondered why she chose to stay in such a vulnerable mode during the interview and didn’t defend herself by saying what I just said.

Regardless, that girl was wise beyond her years and ahead of her time. Some people simply are therefore they die young and maybe come back many years later. I feel this way about James Dean.

And also, Nancy Spungeon.

No, really, hear me out …

If you read “And I Don’t Want to Live This Life” by Deborah Spungeon, Nancy’s mom, there are similarities. (And so interesting, both girls were from Philadelphia!)

These girls were tough, did drugs, turned tricks for drugs, possessed incredible style and beauty. I know a lot of people don’t think of Nancy as a “beauty.” But look again, she has similar features to the stunning Lady GaGa.

Both Gia and Nancy were head strong and intelligent. Spungeon’s IQ was 175.

And both died in their 20s.

I can only speculate, but I think people who die young just know their own destiny and live these frenzied lives as if they are trying to cheat death, somehow.

Fatal stories are horrific to us, especially when we’ve lost loved ones who wanted to live. How can others throw their lives away just like that? It’s not for us to say or judge, as we do not know the pain that lives inside another human being.

I like to focus on the positive. I did not know Gia personally, but what I do know is what she left behind to the world: Art via her beauty. She was a damn good model and I love going back to the 1980s through her work. Even though Gia’s time wasn’t so innocent, it was an innocent time for a lot of people. And nostalgia is healthy.

RIP, Gia. You were an original.