We all have childhood memories of gifts we were given. Some gifts were coveted while others made us cringe. I love to hear stories of childhood gifts and who better to ask than my favourite bloggers?
Next up to the plate to share a gift memory is Hugzilla. I must admit I have a bit of blog-crush on Zilla. Her kick-ass snark and hilarious rants make me laugh-spit wine at my computer screen.
Whether it’s her posts on the Thermomix Virus to her unnatural obsession with One Direction, commentary on society’s latest douchebag or her Top 10 Sexist Toys for Girls awards (a personal favourite), this girl could write about paint drying and I’d still read. I’m also insanely jealous of her impressive collection of gig posters…
What was your favourite gift you were given as a kid or teen?
My first ever pink Sanyo walkman. The year was 1986. I was 10 years old.
Who gave it to you?
My mum and dad bought it for me when we went on the cruise ship Oriana. It was a duty free purchase and I can pretty much remember being strapped to it for the entire two week voyage.
The best part was that we stopped in Fiji for a day trip and I managed to score three pirated cassette tapes, which I proudly chose myself. One was True Blue by Madonna, one was She’s So Unusual by Cyndi Lauper and the other one was Private Dancer by Tina Turner. It kick-started an obsessive love for music that has stayed with me all my life.
Remember, this was way back in 1986 so I was clearly ahead of the curve when it came to pirating music. That was back when “downloading” involved cranes and shipping containers and there were actual pirates of the “Ahoy, matey!” variety.
Do you still have it?
No, but I desperately wish I did. I still remember the reassuring solidity of its weight in my hand. It was the size of a house brick and required enough battery power to run a medium-sized commercial generator nowadays, but I loved that thing. I took it everywhere. I ate with it. I slept with it. I almost bankrupted my parents with endless requests for AA batteries. We had some great adventures together.
Is it something your kids would play with now?
Nope. For starters, my kids would probably try to swipe the front instead of opening it. I also imagine that their weak little iGeneration fingers would lack the muscularity required to push down on those “play” and “rewind” buttons. To navigate the individual tracks I had to hold down the fast-forward button manually until I managed to find the song I wanted. It took patience. And sophisticated guesswork. None of this “tap and swipe” business. I bet they’d love pulling the tape out of my cassettes though.
Any other details or special memories of this gift?
It had those bulky over-the-ear headphones. Not the soft type, the ones with hard plastic and metal. If you accidentally fell asleep in them, you’d wake up with a headphone-shaped hole in the side of your head. So many special memories.
A big thanks to Hugzilla for sharing her gift memory and especially for that flashback photo. I was expecting to be sent a photo of a 10 year old panda so that piece of cute 80s gold – complete with what I suspect might be a mullet – was generous on her part. I owe you big time Zilla!
Did you have a walkman (or mullet) as a kid?