Ever heard Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire”?  I love how he was able to take a history book and just fling a bunch of historical events together and make them rhyme and sound cool.  He started with his birth year and ended up in the 80s I believe.  So I thought I might do the same thing, only starting with my birth year and not rhyming or sounding very cool.  I found my facts on this website www.thepeoplehistory.com. 

I’m sure it’s at least as accurate as Wikipedia.  Away we go!


Stuff that happened –

I was born.  And there was rejoicing.  Especially from my mother who was glad to no longer be pregnant.  My brother was so happy he kept the toys he got for me and knocked over my bassinet.

Apple Computer Company started.  My family would get the totally hip Apple IIc when I was in grade school.  I played a game on it called King’s Quest that took 8 floppy disks.  You had to turn the disk every time your little guy walked from one screen to another.  I loved that stupid game.

With incredible graphics like these, how can you go wrong?  Still - it was an adventure starring a GIRL.

With incredible graphics like these, how can you go wrong? Still – it was an adventure starring a GIRL.

A panel warned that CFCs from aerosol cans can damage the Ozone layer.  Americans said “Pfft.”

The U.S. celebrates the 200th anniversary of independence from Britain.  Interestingly, Britain celebrates the same thing.

Stuff happens in other countries, like earthquakes that kill a few hundred thousand people.  The U.S. was busy introducing the two-dollar bill and punk rock.


I turned four.  My brother suggested a Psych evaluation on account of my new invisible friend.

Ronald Reagan was elected.  He would go down in history as the GOP’s personal Jesus.

Pac-Man arcade game is released, creating the dreaded “Pac-Man Fever” which killed the brain cells of thousands of kids worldwide.

I can see why people got addicted to this.

I can see why people got addicted to this.

Someone shot J.R.

John Lennon (actual person) was shot and killed.  Jessica Simpson was born, though, bringing balance back to the Force.

Stuff happens in other countries like wars, hurricanes, and terrorist attacks.  The U.S. invents the Post-It note.


I turn eight.  We get to vote in our Weekly Reader.  I randomly circle the guy my friend circles.  Many people continue to vote like this into adulthood.

My parents decide the best gift ever for my brother and me are Sony Walkmans (with tape decks) because we shut the hell up on long car trips.

Ronald Reagan is re-elected.  70 US banks fail.  Trickle-down economics at work?

Actual music is played on MTV.

Music videos?  On MTV?

Music videos? On MTV?

Wham! is a popular band.  Their “Wake me up before you go-go” really spoke to me.

Stuff happened in other countries like famine, explosions, and the USSR boycotting us right back on the Olympics so there!  Or possibly the Russians just didn’t want to go to Los Angeles.


I turn 12.  Hormones commence their dirty work.

U.S. Shuttle program resumes 2.5 years after Challenger disaster.  Maybe they’ve forgotten about that incident, thinks NASA.

The new drug Crack appears in U.S. cities.  No one say we can’t invent stuff.

George Bush Sr is elected, but fortunately Prozac is developed the same year.

1/3 of Yellowstone National Park is destroyed by fire.  Yogi Bear and Boo Boo forced to relocate.

We better a run Boo Boo, the forest is on firrrre!

We better a run Boo Boo, the park is on firrrre!

The first major computer virus infects computers connected to that promising new Internet.

Stuff happened in other countries like more wars, terrorist attacks, and various natural disasters that kill millions.  The U.S. shoots down an Iranian passenger jet.  Whoops.


I turn 18.  I leave that hive of scum and villainy, er, graduate high school and start college.  I go to the local college and live with my parents, which seems like a good idea at the time.

Tonya Harding whacks Nancy Kerrigan in the kneecap and suddenly people care about ice skating.

I got a bat with your name on it - SMILE!

I got a bat with your name on it – SMILE!

O.J. Simpson flees police in his bronco in the slowest and stupidest car chase ever.

Republicans dig for dirt on President Bill Clinton (who after two years they have not accepted as president) and come up with the Whitewater scandal.

Stuff happens in other countries like war, outbreaks of the Ebola virus, and the building of the Channel tunnel between France and England which allows them to more easily insult each other.  The U.S. genetically engineers a tomato!


I turn 22.  I switch majors at the last second, start dating my future husband, 1998graduate college, move, start grad school because they offer me a job as a TA, get married and move again.  I take stuff slow.

Bill Clinton (who after 6 years Repubs still haven’t accepted as President) denies he had “sexual relations” with that intern.  Republicans are so excited they nearly wet themselves.  Politicians discuss whether BJs are sex or not as the World looks on at us in awe.

The U.S. has the first budget surplus in 30 years so naturally the president is impeached for not keeping it in his pants and telling big old fibs about it.

Tobacco companies get a big handslap cause it turns out sucking smoke into your lungs is bad for you after all.

It seemed so healthy!   Who knew?

It seemed so healthy! Who knew?

Google is founded and people start doing all their research on the totally reliable Internet!

The FDA approves Viagra.  President Clinton is elated.

Stuff happens in those other countries.  Russia goes bankrupt, and the Japanese bail out a bunch of banks.  This will never happen to the U.S. again because our money comes from Jesus.


I turn 24.  Thing One is born.  My husband and I wait for her real parents to rescue her from our incompetence.

We have the dumbest election in history.  The presidential race is not decided for over a month because Florida has pregnant chads and can’t figure out their own ballots.  Bush Jr. is eventually declared the winner and I’m sure it had nothing at all to do with his brother being the governor of Florida.

Nasa says the hole in the Ozone layer over Antarctica has increased like 16 sq miles in just 12 months.  Americans go “Pfft.”

Mr. Earth has an ouchie.

Mr. Earth has an ouchie.

The dot.com bubble bursts and lots of white collar geeks in Silicon Valley are no longer able to afford trillion dollar houses.  Sadface.

Reality shows “Survivor” and “Big Brother” have their first seasons.  It is the beginning of the end of real T.V.

Stuff happened in other countries.  Mad Cow disease spreads throughout the European Union, and cellphone disease spreads worldwide.  The US finally gives the Panama Canal back to, uh, Panama.


I turn 25.  I had a one-year-old.  Nothing else happened to me personally.

Two planes flew into the World Trade Center on September 11th, a day that would live in infamy partly because the news continues to talk about it constantly which I’m certain is great for the healing of the people who lost loved ones during the attack.

The U.S. (or rather President Bush Jr.) declares war on Iraq.  Phones are tapped.  No one dares not support the war in fear of being labeled a terrorist sympathizer.  I am as frightened of my own government as I am of the terrorists.

The Dept of Homeland Security is organized, and Bush institutes the Patriot Act.  Librarians become heroes.  No, seriously.  Librarians (both conservative and liberal) are asked to turn over their patron’s records (cause if you check out a terrorism book you must be one).  Instead they dump the records, at their own risk, and continue to do so.  HA.  I love my profession.

Stuff happened in other countries.  Like we declared war on one of them.


I turn 28.  Stuff start to get normal again and settle down, so we have Thing Two.

Bush Jr. is re-elected.  The rest of the world looks at us like we’re total morons, which apparently we are.

Lance Armstrong wins an unprecedented 6th consecutive Tour de France.  Nothin’ can stop him now!

Martha Stewart is convicted of a felony and five months in prison.  She launches a new show about prison decorating.

Clearly a dangerous criminal.

Clearly a dangerous criminal.

First same sex marriage performed in Massachusetts.  A plague of locusts happens in West Africa.  COINCIDENCE?

Environmental protection laws dropped to allow more logging in US forests.  Cause trees are highly overrated.

Stuff happens in other countries like this hurricane in Haiti but the big news is Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction!  A BOOB was spotted!


I turn 32.  I start my MLS degree online cause Librarian is listed as one of the fastest growing occupations.  The recession, naturally, will hit in the middle of this, causing librarians to hold on to their jobs instead of retiring.  Naturally.

Barack Obama is elected president to the great surprise of the Republicans, his own party, and probably himself.  He is the first African-American president in history and inherits the reigns of a bankrupt country that is hated by almost every major world power.  Congrats, Barack!

Though McCain (the Repub candidate) lost the election, he introduced us all to Sarah Palin, the woman he chose as VP because, um, she was a woman.  A brainless one.  Who talks and talks and talks.  And is still AROUND.  I will never forgive John McCain for this.  Neither will a lot of his party.

Thank you so bloody much, McCain.

Thank you so bloody much, McCain.

Republicans aren’t sore losers, they just suspect Obama shouldn’t be president cause he like is a Muslim terrorist non-citizen unpatriotic anti-Christ.  All valid concerns.

Increasing oil prices cause inflation.  Unemployment increases.  Wheee!

Katy Perry kisses a girl and reportedly likes it.

Writers start expecting to get paid for their work on T.V. and go on strike.  TV stations are like, pfft, who needs writers?  More reality TV comin’ up!

Stuff happened in other countries but SERIOUSLY we were broke and had no entertainment.  SUCKAGE!


Add it up.  I arrive on WordPress.  Ta-da!  I gain “fame” by covering 50 Shades of Crap.

Barack Obama is re-elected to the surprise of the Republicans, his own party, and probably himself.  I experience relief on a scale I haven’t in ages, but am very respectful toward the losing side.  Not really.  This doesn’t happen often.  I gloat like hell.

WOOOT my side won!

WOOOT my side won!

Wackos fear the world will end and stock up on the 3 foods most bought from Wal-Mart during emergencies (for realz): beer, peanut butter, and pop tarts.


The world doesn’t end.  Surprise!

I’m about ready to give up on my blog.  I toss a post up randomly.  It is Freshly Pressed.  WOOT.

Alice remains Alice.

41 responses

  1. I really enjoyed this. Thanks!

  2. Hey! I started my MLS around the same time. Cuz of all the school jobs that would be coming…and then that became the job that is typically cut first in a budget crunch, and they have budget crunches every year.

    1. I was accepted in the MLS program right at the exact moment all the librarian jobs dried up. Hence, why I’m going to be taking blood pressures for a living now.

    2. Same thing at the university. Funny, that. At least we’re respected, though, right? Snort.

  3. This was brilliant. Well done! Although I did get shivers when I noticed John Lennon mentioned in the same paragraph as Jessica Simpson.

    1. Yeah, that does seem unjust.

    2. Yes, that sarcasm was painful to write.

  4. Thanks for this great trip back! In 1976 my mom broke her arm while “iceskating” on the parquet floor with felt pads under her feet. She was as crazy as a bat as she was a child.

    1. Oh, man, who hasn’t ice skated on slick floors? I used to somersault in front of the TV and my mom was afraid I’d go through. Never did.

  5. I heap more praise upon thee. This really is a great post. In fact, I’m thinking of pilfering this idea for my blog. With your blessing, of course.

    1. Of course! I pilfered it from Billy Joel.

  6. My list of world events is like yours, except I would add Elvis dying and then reappearing in Walmarts and 7-11s since then…

    1. How could I have missed Elvis? There’s millions of them in Vegas alone now!

  7. Well played Alice,,,well played 🙂

  8. Good one. And interesting to note that you are just as old as I am and that we also share the library thing. My undergrad degree was in Library Science. I knew you were cool.

    1. Far out! It’s funny how many librarian bloggers there are!

  9. Blast you Alice! I’ve been listening to Billy Joel far too much lately and had just finally stifled the urge to put up a post about that very song, to be be followed by a post about how the events of that song affect my life.

    I remember once trying to do what you did and putting together a list of the major newsworthy events of my life. I figured of if drunken, manic-depressive, bad-dressing, supermodel banging William could do it, then so could I. I quickly learned that I had underestimated the significance of that last part about the supermodel and what it must indicate.

    Blah. I see post about personal reflection coming up in the near future. Like I don’t have enough papers to write this semester already.

    1. Billy Joel did have that certain something to get Christie. Must have been his sax.

  10. No silly, the last one is Alice remains awesome. Loved this post so much 🙂

    1. How funny I was at your blog while you were at my blog!

  11. As someone roughly 10 years your senior, I would just like to point out that we didn’t start the Billy Joel.

    1. Good to know. Always listen to your elders. (I am an elder to people at work now and I think that should stop immediately.)

  12. I was also born in 1976. That was a very creative post. It’s funny because you marked years where I, also, had thing happen but totally different things. Very cool 🙂

    1. Glad you liked it. I welcome anyone to try a post with their own memories.

  13. Ah, yes, I remember many of those events. And unfortunately, I remember others that came before you were born. By a few years. Or more… On a side note, I didn’t realize that you became a librarian later on. Interesting factoid. 🙂

    1. You learn all sorts of interesting things about bloggers. I have found I remember quite a few things that our incoming freshmen who were born when I graduated high school do not understand. They make me feel old.

  14. i was just thinking about that song…
    Thanks for the humorous lists and what not on a random Monday!

  15. My son was born in 1976. It was a very good year. I hope you never give up on your blog….unless you write books. I will hang on your every word either way. 🙂

    1. Oh, wow, that is one of the best compliments I’ve ever gotten! And what a way to start the morning – thank you so much!

  16. My takeaway from all these momentous world events is that Yogi and Boo Boo had to flee their home. I never knew!

    An extremely enjoyable post. I can’t believe you almost gave up on your blog 😦
    Thank you, Alice, for not giving up 🙂

    1. Aw, thank you for continuing to read. It was sad about Yogi and Boo Boo . . . all those pic-a-nic baskets lost.

  17. This was an awesome post! Brought me back to so many things! That King’s Quest game was one of my favorites!! Did you ever play Where in the world is Carmen Sandiago? (I know it doesn’t look like I spelled that right, but I know it’s not Santiago – the theme musice was “Where in the world is Carmen San-diago?”) remember? Huh?

    I was only one year behind you so I followed everything you wrote. Amazing post!

    1. You played King’s Quest too? Cool. YES I remember Carmen Sandiago – where – in – the – world – is . . . Carmen San-diago? There was even a game show for kids, remember that?

      1. Yes, I do! I liked playing the game better than watching the show though.

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