In the Spring and Summer of 1982, I had just entered my twenties, somewhat feeling that I had not made the most of my teenage years while sitting in a swampy rural Wisconsin Superfund-cleanup-town of 300 people. Nonetheless, I was ready to ROCK (i.e., GET OUT) and enjoy what I had been waiting for all my life: my young adult years, where I could go where I pleased, do what I wanted to do, and wear what I wanted to wear.


At least on this latter point, I largely continued the deep, rage-y frustration that I had been keeping on simmer for nearly a decade regarding fashion. I LOATHED '70s fashion, all of it. Coming out of the sharp, witty, and clean design lines of '60s mod clothing, I couldn't even believe it when all that coolness was replaced by crappy and unflattering blandness, and it STAYED and STAYED and STAYED. The early '80s were proving to be no better, I pouted, and I had to search hard to try to find clothing that I could even deal with putting on my body without cringing.

Do you think I KID? For anyone who doesn't recall, today I bring you a few selections from the Sears Spring/Summer 1982 catalog, a fair barometer of what was generally available in most clothing stores at the time. Click to enlarge the photos if you dare. Try not to punch a kitten.

Exactly WHAT decade was this??? COME ON!! The hell.

Oh, great! It's Mickey Mons!

Oh, yeah, totally gonna go for these. Why not just give up and watch "The Price Is Right" with my head shoved in a Family-Size bag of Ruffles?

Four completely lumpen jackets! Wow!

Universally, the most unflattering length of dress. Bleah.

I want you to reflect that these are the clothes from the JUNIORS department.

Once again, high-waisted pegged pants are the most unflattering style of pants on EVERYONE. They give you a fat stomach and bulky thighs, even if you weigh 98 lbs. WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY.

White socks with espadrilles! Oh, sure!

I have a real problem with beige. Everything used to be beige. Grr.

Yee-haw! NO.

Even the bright colors here cannot override the hideousness.

Oh, boy, how about a sweet summer day spent at the lake! Just grab your Zip 'N Tie and your impossibly stodgy bathing suit and have fun!

OK, I can't take any more. I will leave you with a murder of shoes.