So full disclosure, today has been really busy, and I wanted to just post a Youtube video for you all to watch, but I figured I should give you a little backstory to go with it.
No matter what the season, Friday nights were always important to me, and I always wanted to get the most out of them. When I was a kid, my parents would do their weekly grocery shopping, and get dinner while they left us with the sweet lady across the street to baby sit us. She always had tons of soda and candy which were perfect accompaniment to TGIF. As we grew older, and the TGIF lineup grew weaker, my parents decided to take us with them, and thus began the Friday night tradition of going to the South Mall that had a Weis grocery store attached to it.
This mall had everything a 12 year old RK could possibly want. A Walden Books with a comic rack and clearance section. A K&K toys store which later became KB Toys. An Electronic Boutique which was the forerunner to Game Stop but soooooo much better. An arcade which always cycled in the latest and hottest cabinets, and of course a Dollar Tree/99 cent store.
We usually stopped at the Burger King across the street from the mall, or the local pizza shop inside which still stands to this day. You can't help but go in there now and be taken back 20 years into the past. After dinner, we would walk the mall. Our mom would go clothes shopping and Dad would take us to the hot spots. It usually consisted of him making a stop in Radio Shack, but being nerd offspring, we didn't mind.
Writing the Toys R' Us story last night, got Enchantress and I talking about how when we were kids, more often then not, we would never buy anything or have anything bought for us. It was looking at all the books, and magazines. Checking out the back of the blister card on all the action figures. Seeing what new games were for sale, and cool gadgets. Heck, usually we were happy to get a quarter for an egg vending machine that never produced a toy shown on the front.
After the mall, we'd go grocery shopping. After stopping at the deli counter to each get our free slice of American cheese, we'd be free to run wild around the store. We were behaved, but we explored. The small toy sections all grocery stores used to have. The magazine section to finger through MAD or WWF magazine. Luckily for us, most of the junkfood was at the end of the store, so I would catch up to make sure I had the supplies I needed to go home and watch TV. We're talking Pringles with Ridges, a block of Munster cheese, and all the Sunny-D I could drink.
What would I watch on Friday nights after I got home from the mall in the summer of 1994 you ask? There was only 1 show I was interested in, and that was Hulk Hogan's Navy Seal vehicle..... Thunder In Paradise.
This show was like Nightrider and Airwolf but with a boat. Like Nightboat on the Simpsons "Every week there's a canal"
Here is the second episode of the series to enjoy, and let me know in the comments how you spent your Friday Nights!