What trends did you get in on the ground floor?

Anyone can get involved with a trend when it’s trendy. What were you into BEFORE it was popular? A movie, TV show, band, fashion, catchphrase, whatever.

For me it would have to be South Park. When this show premiered I was a junior in high school. Most of my friends didn’t get Comedy Central on their cable, so a couple of people and myself were tasked with telling everyone else how great it was and taping it for them.

Put it another way: once I asked a clerk at Spencer’s if they had any South Park shirts and he replied, “South Park? Never heard of it.”

Of course, the show is now just the political rantings of its creators and has been more or less irrelevant since the movie, but that’s another thread.

So what did YOU get into before anyone else?

I watched Spongebob Squarepants from the get-go. Although I wouldn’t exactly say I got in on the ground floor as they advertised it quite a bit before it premiered.

… That’s it.

I supported the (Australian) Democrats in the Upper House before my similarly-aged chardonnay-socialist peers got in on the act.

I had an eyebrow piercing before it became passe.

I had a leather trenchcoat back when trenchcoats were considered unusual and a bit dorky, at least among teenagers. I kept wearing them until they started to become something of a cliche for brooding 20-somethings, when I switched to a 3/4 length leather jacket. Next year, THEY were all the rage…

I had one of the first Koosh balls in the midwest. My parents brought it back for me after a trip to California, where I guess they were in all the gift shops. None of us had ever seen one before. When I tossed it to unexpecting people, they couldn’t wrap their little minds around that “Koosh-y” texture.

Okay, so it’s not an eyebrow piercing, but in the Monroe, MI, of 1988 it was a pretty big deal.


Every weekend, me and my friends would make the 20-mile drive to the only 7/11 in the county that sold Snapple. (And we lived just outside L.A., so this was NO tiny podunk burg here!) Funny thing is, I stopped drinking it just as it was turning into a cultural phenomenon, and haven’t touched the stuff since.

I was a member of the ‘Unemployed Workers Party’ back in the Seventies (Yeah, I KNOW, a contradiction in terms wot!) and it has made a recent reappearance as ‘The Dole Army’.
Mind you, it wasn’t cool, even back then!

When The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy was first transmitted on Radio 4, I had my little transistor radio glued to my teenage ear. Dunno how cool that is, though.

[slight hijack]Hey Steve Wright, you’re not the famous 70’s Oz rocker by any chance are ya?

Not that I was in to 70’s rock (of any description) oh, no, not me!:wink: [/ slight hijack]

I’ve been unhip since way before it was cool.

Ringo, that has all the markings of an EXCELLENT sig to me!

That IS one of the ‘coolest’ things I’ve heard in a long time.

When I was in High School, I was damn near shunned by my entire family for wearing these cool shoes I found on a vacation… Birkenstocks, or something? :wink:

A few summers ago, I was on my way to a summer teaching/camp gig in New England, and my information packet had said to expect chilly nights, so I zipped to the Topeka mall in order to find some light jackets or sweaters or something.

Lo and behold, the mall was full of vendors peddling their crafts at a craft show. I browsed around, looking at the wheat-oriented wall-hangings and the homemade quilts…

…and then I came upon a woman who sold crocheted clothing. Suddenly I was seized by my 4-year-old self (probably because my Nana used to crochet, and my 4-year-old self spent a lot of time with her), and so when the woman mentioned to me that she “took requests”, as it were, I blurted, “Can you make me a poncho???”

She could! :smiley:

You don’t know how much crap I got from the kids that summer. I’ll bet 75% of their little asses were swaddled in ponchos by the NEXT summer, goddamn.

kambuckta… no.

So, that’s yet another Steve Wright who’s more famous than me … :frowning:

That sounds like a job for Dave Gorman!
Here’s another one.
Whose Line is it Anyway?. Now I can’t claim to have gotten on its bandwagon as early as anyone in the UK but the second it appeared here in the US I began to watch it and roll, roll, roll on the floor laughing. And now they’ve made an American remake of it, which is just as good, except Drew ain’t no Clive, but I’ll survive.

I started watching it when it was first aired as the Seinfeld Chronicles.

Gummi Bears

Here in the US no one had heard of gummi bears in the 70s and early 80s. My grandma was from Germany and brought us Gummi Bears every Sunday when she would visit (purchased at the German Delicatessen). Then sometime in the mid 80s everyone started eating them and talking about what a great “new” candy it was.

American made gummis are just not as good as the imported ones. Same goes for Swiss chocolate. How anyone can eat Hershey’s chocolate is beyond me. You might as well just eat some wax, but I digress.

The Internet – I’ve been reading & posting to mailing lists & Usenet since 1983. Google groups has postings from me dating back to 1985.

Smurfs. Go ahead and laugh… Me and my sister used to collect the little figures on vacation when we were little, before the cartoon came out. They were like a quarter at the little novelty store where we took vacation, and we had a ton. A couple of years later the cartoon came out and they were all the rage.

JAMS. You rememebr them, those horribly patterned shits and shorts, sometimes tropical, sometimes just a mish-mash of whatever. I got a shirt when i was in holland when I was, oh, 8 or 12 and wore it all the time. I got mocked like you woulnd’t believe, since kids are oh-so understanding and accepting at those ages. About a year later, it was everywhere. Go figure.

Shaving just the sides of your head. In HS, 1987, I ran my second cross-country race and beat one of the senior, varsity, runners (which technically shold have placed me on the Varsity team, but nooooo.) Feeling rather salty, and for no reason I can figure out, I thought I’d shave/trim the sides. Ended up botching it badly and just shaving the entire side to the skin. I went to a Catholic school and was informed, instructed, by the Dean in no uncertain terms that I was to “let it grow out,” that it was inappropriate. Fast forward eight, maybe ten months, people have lines in their hair, sides shaved, all sorts of stuff.

I was also in on South Park from Season One.
And Survivor! I actualy applied and received a call-back for season one. Never got past the first round tough. :frowning:

I shaved my head and grew a goatee when shaving your head and growing a goatee wasn’t cool.
There’s a song in there, someplace.