Playground Prohibition. Reunited with Garbage.

In Uncategorized on April 28, 2010 at 11:22 am

When I was a child I used to collect things.  Stickers, the occasional slug and more worryingly, the silver foil from Kit Kat wrappers –  (I would use the miniature Iron from the Monopoly set  to smooth out the wrinkles.  I understand how weird this sounds now.)

It all started when I was given a Jem & The Holograms sticker.  Okay so I wasn’t given it,  I sort of took it, but that’s another story (truly truly, truly outrageous etc, etc…)

I soon graduated onto the Acid House smiley face stickers, which could  be purchased bizarrely from my primary school as part of the seemingly innocuous  ‘Be Smart,  Be Seen’ initiative.  The psychedelic connotations of an eternally-gurning face  beaming out from the school jumpers of a hundred screeching eight-year olds,  somehow and rather wonderfully  got lost in bureaucratic translation.


As our older brothers and sisters ran around a field waving their glow sticks in chemiluminescent exaltation,  us kids were running around the playground shaking our packets of Nerds and cartons of Um-Bongo in a dextrose delirium.

The smiley face united us in our pursuit of altered states, whatever our substance. Only no-one ever pointed this out, at least not in Plymouth.

And then, somewhere in 1986 during a clandestine playground tryst with an older boy, I was handed a card which changed the course of my life.  (I might be exaggerating slightly).

Behold the Garbage Pail Kids sticker collection.  Or at least what’s left of it…*

Sued by the makers of Cabbage Patch Kids for copyright infringement, can't think why.

I was immediately hooked.  Sucked in by the clever word play and grotesque  yet  humourous afflictions the characters suffered.  The fact that my school, jumping on the moral bandwagon of other schools, immediately banned them, simply added to their charm. (FYI,  those Smiley Acid House stickers were still being sold, go fig…)

This was our Prohibition. Garbage Pail Kids became the black market  must have every eight  year old child coveted. I once gave up the entire of contents of my lunch box (Cheese roll, packet of Quavers, Golden Delish, Orange Trio) for a Sticky Nikki. A fat faced, snaggle tooth child, buried deep underground as killer ants marched over her face and crawled into her eyes and ears, enticed by the gooey substance that oozed down her face.

Swapsies anyone?

*With thanks to my sister who kept my treasured collection safe all these years.

  1. its Jem with a J 😀

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