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The Punky Brewster Shoes

MY MOTHER: I bet you still have those nasty Punky Brewster shoes stashed away somewhere.

ME: Why yes, yes I do.

At the height of popularity of the television series Punky Brewster (It couldn’t have been too popular, because NBC cancelled it after only two seasons.), there was much Punky Brewster merchandise available (That right there would have been a good reason to keep it on the air.). I had a Punky Brewster T-shirt, backpack, Punky & Brandon dolls, bead kit, and clay pin kit. I even had a Halloween costume, which was actually very silly because I looked more like her in my normal clothes than in a plastic mask and vinyl suit. But what I liked the best and got the most use out of were my Punky Brewster shoes. They were hightops (that was the popular style way back then).

My Punky Brewster shirt. Sorry it is wrinkled. I keep it in the back of a dresser drawer. A bird pooped on it once, but I have washed it since then.

My Punky Brewster shirt. Sorry it is wrinkled. I keep it in the back of a dresser drawer. A bird pooped on it once, but I have washed it since then.

It always bothered me that, contrary to all reason, they did not actually look like the shoes that Punky wore on the show! On my TV, she wore what appeared to be two totally different colored Converse All-Stars. (I just realized that I originally watched Punky Brewster only in black and white—can you imagine!) Maybe the problem lay in that the contract for the shoes most likely did not fall to Converse for manufacture. Maybe someone was afraid two different shoes would become parted at the store. Unfortunately, the shoes matched each other, but they WERE multi-colored. They said Punky Brewster on them. They must have come with boring laces (As if!), because I quickly replaced them with neon green ones. My son asked me, “Did you color the laces?” I could see where he would be confused. I recently DID color some laces, and the shoes as well. I responded emphatically, “No. It was the 80s, a wonderful, colorful time.” [Rant: Now we live in a time when Simon is trying to remove all color from the world and reduce us all to only black and white, starting with their malls across the country.]

Such a cool box! There is even a pic to color inside the lid and a maze on the bottom.

Such a cool box! There is even a pic to color inside the lid and a maze on the bottom.

My mom bought the shoes very large-2 ½-because they didn’t have my right size. I wore them as long as my feet would fit in them. There was even a big P or something on the sole. But I wore them until it was gone. I loved those dang shoes. I cannot imagine why my mother thought I would actually throw them out when I was done with them. The more she asked, the deeper I hid them in the back of my closet. Sometimes I would bring it up just to spite her. I have brought them with me through three moves. The effect of heat and moisture may be reflected on their deterioration, but they are still a treasured possession.

Anyone willing to pay me big bucks for these very worn but highly collectable footwear? One million? One thousand? Going once, going twice...

Anyone willing to pay me big bucks for these very worn but highly collectable footwear? One million? One thousand? Going once, going twice…

So now, you know if you are ever around me and I mention “Punky Brewster shoes” that I am bragging about my mad hoarding skillz.

Don’t get me started on all the photographs I have, both digital and snapshots, that I am trying to store and keep organized.

For more of my Punky-related posts, please click here:

Follow the romantic entanglements of The Riley Sisters in my books:
Be Careful What You Wish ForAVAILABLE NOW!
The Wind Could Blow a BugWHERE IT ALL BEGAN!



You Can Never Get Too Much Punky Brewster

Since I had almost no followers a year ago, most of you probably do not realize that I have previously blogged about Punky Brewster. (Clicking on the link will let you see my Punky-inspired tattoo.) I loved her growing up and spent quite a while dressing like her and buying assorted merchandise which I am sure made NBC quite rich and Soleil Moon Frye didn’t see a penny.

I now follow her on Facebook. It is very cool to get to see glimpses of her life now with her husband and two young daughters. I have learned that she really loves to take pictures of herself. Sometimes I try to pretend our lives have things in common. They really do not.

The other day I found this page from my scrapbook about my Punky-worshipping years. Enjoy. Please don’t laugh so hard your gut bursts open.

Yes, my scanner is small and I had to piece together 2 pictures.

For more Punky, please visit:

Ode to Punky Brewster

My Life Philosophy (Sitcom Style)

I’m not stalking you. is NOW ON FACEBOOK! “Like” that I’m not stalking you and get an update when there is a new post to read. (It is sort of like YOU are stalking ME.)

Ode to Punky Brewster

When I was a kid, I loved the NBC Television show Punky Brewster. I was in 4th grade and the same age as Punky. There was just something about her spunkiness and colorfulness that I wanted to emulate. Even though in reality I was more like shy Cherie. I used to dress like Punky. I would roll up one leg of my jeans and tie a red (or sometimes purple) bandana around my other leg, tight enough to cut off the circulation. (For the record, Soleil Moon Frye cheated. The costume designer had a loop sewn onto her pants so that her bandana wouldn’t fall down.) I was big on ponytails anyway, so it never bothered me to wear them all the time.

I even gave up my imaginary Sheepdog Sandy for an imaginary Golden Retriever named Brandon as if she was last week’s rotten meat (So sorry Sandy, girl.) For those who don’t know, her dog Brandon was named after the head of NBC at the time, Brandon Tartikoff, who created the show based on a girl he had known growing up with the same name. They had to track her down to get permission to use her name and everything.

She wore a skate key around her neck. At the time I had no frickin’ idea what a skate key was, so I wore a pink whistle around my neck. Later I would make friends with a girl who had a skate key and would loan it to me at school and let me wear it. But that brings back memories of the day she offered to let me wear it and I declined, because I had seen my mom’s car totaled from the school bus window on my way to school. (Don’t worry, she was fine. She lives on to this day to drive me batty.)

I even went Trick or Treating that year as Punky Brewster. For some reason I bought the 80’s plastic costume & mask combo, although I would have been much more convincing in the imitation-Punky wardrobe I wore every day. I bought everything Punky. I had a Punky Brewster messenger-style backpack that not many school books fit in to. I had Punky Brewster craft sets (bead jewelry and clay pins/medals). I had a Punky Brewster T-shirt. I think my favorite were my Punky Brewster sneakers. Although I will never understand why THE SHOES MATCHED! They were multi-colored, but they matched. When in reality, Punky would have had two different colored shoes. Leave it to merchandising money grubbers to get it wrong! My mom threatened for years to throw out my old grubby Punky shoes. I am proud to say I still have them to this day. Except of course they don’t fit anymore. And the plastic on them has gotten sticky over the years (Gross-a-roo!).

A few years ago I got a tattoo inspired by Punky’s sunshine ponytail holders. It is to symbolize my love of Punky and all things TV. Those who know me know that I still mis-match my socks to this day. And while Punky may have started me on the mis-matched road, I believe that it truly reflects my unique personality.

For more Punky, please visit:

You Can Never Get Too Much Punky Brewster

My Life Philosophy (Sitcom Style)

The Definition of Punky Power


I have recently been rewatching Punky Brewster with my 5 year old son. He likes the show a lot, especially the first two seasons where Punky is younger and closer to his age. Margaux is his favorite (there is no accounting for taste).

The show often gives him grandiose ideas that I then have to deal with:

He sees Punky build a treehouse in her backyard, then he wants one. I have to point out that the only tree in our backyard is ending its life and loses another limb with every ensuing storm.

Punky sets up a restaurant in her living room. Next thing I know, the chairs from my kitchen table are moved into the dining room around his play table—never mind that the chairs tower over the table.

Punky has little puppy Brandon trailing her every move. Then he wants a puppy. There is no reasoning with him, although I point out that we already have a dog, with vaguely similar features, who has the advantage of already being trained and broken in.

My sweet Dave dog.

My sweet Dave dog.

*sigh* Kids.

I hope in all this he is soaking up some of the good lessons the show has to teach as well. If you are familiar with the show at all (which you SHOULD be!), you will know that Punky often shouts “Punky Power!” And it is a great catchphrase. It was very handy to throw onto Punky merchandise in the 1980s. But I was pleased, in a Season 3 episode titled “Tons of Fun”, to be given a succinct definition of what Punky Power is actually made up of. Which just reinforces my thoughts that no matter who you are or how old you are, you probably could use a little Punky Power in your life as well…

Punky Power:

  1. Believing in yourself.
  2. Never giving up.
  3. Faith that things are gonna turn out OK.
  4. You can do anything you want if you really try.

I know, I know. I am supposed to be an adult now, and not believe in such gibberish. Some people try their hardest and just never make it. But I look at it as I have lived my life in reverse. When I was a child, I acted more like a tiny adult. I knew my mom struggled being a single parent. I knew we had money issues. I grew up to get a responsible job to pay my own way in life.

And I was miserable.

So, in order to not slit my wrists every morning, I need to believe now in childish things, such as hopes and dreams and that maybe life will get better.

If you would like to see more posts on Punky, please click here:

Follow the romantic entanglements of The Riley Sisters in my books:
The Wind Could Blow a BugAVAILABLE NOW!
When You Least Expect It NEW RELEASE!
Be Careful What You Wish For – COMING JANUARY 2016!

My Trip to Strangerville

I had the honor of being interviewed by It Just Gets Stranger‘s Eli McCann about one of my most favorite subjects in the universe: Punky Brewster!

He tried to keep the topic on only the refrigerator episode, but as I harbor deep-seated resentment toward that episode (see link to his post below), I kept trying to steer the conversation to Punky Brewster in general. (He edited that out, and rightfully so).

The whole time I was crazy nervous on this phone interview with him and his cohort Meg, I wondered why we were going to all this trouble for a blog post.

Turns out the interview was actually for his Strangerville podcast. That is right, America. I am now in a podcast.

And it is good I didn’t know it was for a podcast, as I would have been more crazy nervous.

If there is anyone else out there that would like to interview me about Punky Brewster or Growing Pains or my love of Matthew Perry, please just contact me at:

Here is the link to Eli’s website and the podcast:

Don’t be scared by the title. It isn’t that spooky. I appear in segment titled “Refrigerator Death.” Has a cheery ring to it, huh?

Your past shapes you. It can’t be undone.
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