1983 - and its water pigs

I was pulled from my mum's belly in 1983.  As such, when I see that year, I definitely notice it!  I kept spotting neat things that started in 1983, and I kept wanting to begin this list.  This past week, I spied two more cultural landmarks that were seeded in this Year of the Water Pig.  So I declared, "Enough. Time to start the list."  A page perpetually in progress, I'll stop when I can no longer find any more sensitive souls born in this year as well as definitive events which made 1983 significant.  Here we go:

1.  The network HBO founded their filmmaking division, currently called HBO Films.  Remember how great Angelina Jolie was in Gia?  Well, we can thank HBO Films for that and other shiny biopics.

2. Lawrence Kasdan's The Big Chill was released 28 September 1983. This dramedy has been a huge influence on me.  I can practically recite the entire film.  I'm quite proud to have this item on our list.

Sometimes surmised to be one of the best opening sequences of an American drama, and I wholeheartedly agree...  But of course, I'll watch anything with Jeff Goldblum.

3.  Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, the Australian alternative rock band, formed.  They're still kickin'!

My #1 favorite Nick Cave song.  I can loop this love song for hours.

4.  The Chicken McNugget internationally became a fast food staple once available at McDonald's.

5.  The Internet.  Yup, I said the Internet.  Google "1 January 1983" as well as "switch to TCP/IP."

6.  Domhnall Gleeson, born 12 May 1983 in Dublin. This joyfully buoyant and Irish actor first grabbed my attention in the romantic comedy About Time, which has an all-around and super estimable cast.  Whenever I've finished a large lunch at work, return to my desk in the haze of a food coma, and want to horse around before returning to duties - I'll log onto Facebook to respectfully objectify this adorable ginger (and his dreamy beard) with my childhood pal.  ...Here's one for my homegirl Ursula! 

7.  Miss Amy Winehouse (1983 - 2011).  I actually was not a fan of Winehouse's work, but I know that her soulful musicianship touched many people.  RIP.  

8. And here's another English artist for you: The actor Rafe Joseph Spall was born on 10 March 1983.

9.  Next is the Brit of all Brits, David Bowie - one of my creative icons, right up there with Nina Simone and Stevie Wonder in terms of creative courage.  In 1983, David called out MTV for ignoring black artists.  Thank you, David.  Many of us humans miss you - eternal gratitude and rest in peace.

10.  "Didn't I get a tie this year?" mumbled Mr Parker.  I make this latest addition the holiday week between Christmas and the 2017 New Year.  A Christmas Story is hilarious and classic.  First released in November 1983, this film remains a classic for anybody who revels in the schmaltz of December.

11.  Presenting another item that makes me excessively proud of 1983.  Next up is Eddie and his television special Delirious, which was released by HBO on 30 August 1983.  This feature film was big for me during college.  My boyfriend and I would walk to the supermarket, purchase a cake, walk back home, plop on the couch with the cake and two forks, and eat our entire cake while laughing nonstop at Eddie's standup.  That was a really cozy time in my life...  So Delirious is a special memory for me and, you know, I miss Eddie's comedic voice.  Or maybe I miss the social mores of the 80s, which Eddie so aptly (and hilariously) observes.  Hope you enjoy this clip, as well as Eddie's red leather jumper!

12.  It may be alittle disjointed to follow foul-mouth Eddie with American playwright Marsha Norman.  (Can you imagine these two at lunch together?)  But here we go:  In 1983 Norman received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in honor of her play 'night, Mother.  Norman's on my radar because she wrote the book for two musicals that I really appreciate - The Secret Garden and The Color Purple.  It's almost 35 yrs too late but, dear Marsha Norma, congratulations on your Pulitzer Price.  You do good work, ladycake!

14.  Obama graduated from Columbia University with a baccalaureate in Political Science in 1983.  

In my family, there's always been love for Barack.  I remember one night my grandmother called me, with her usual "Hi baby."  But that night her voice sounded worried - so I asked "What's wrong?"  She informed that she had seen Barack on television and "he's looking very skinny these days; too skinny."  I had to break it to her:  "Grammie, there's nothing we can do about that."  But if it were possible, I am certainly she would have prepared a traditional Southern meal of fried chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, greens, and sweet potato pie, offered to Barack with a healthy helping of all her maternal affection.  I never got to ask my grammie how and why she came to care about Barack (and I also miss those phone calls).  For me, it's meant alot that the 44th struggled during college.  Because my undergrad years were tough too.  I am thrilled to have him on the 1983 list.  And as David Lettermen said to Barack in an interview this month (Jan 2018), it "“makes me so happy you're still President.”

Before Barack Obama, my grammie had stopped paying attention to politics. She grew up in the segragated South, and I know those stories...  Barack gave her hope, and he gives me solace.  I suggest looking up Pete Souza's photos to witness the wide spectrum of inspiration he offers to many others.