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Over the Boardwalk: 1984

Over the Boardwalk: 1984

Atlantic City isn't the only place with a Boardwalk, ya know. Out here in California we've had the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk since 1907. Its Giant Dipper wooden roller coaster is a National Historic Landmark. In another kind of history, back in 2008 its late, lamented Fun House was the location in one of my very earliest Shorpy photo submissions. I took my 1984 shot on 35mm Kodacolor VR 100 with my Konica Autoreflex T. View full size.

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The girl in the foreground with the white tank top and purple shorts, and the one just to the left of her in the blue top and a couple of steps behind her. The prevailing female hairstyle seems to be mostly shoulder length perms.

Man, to have lived

There are many Shorpy commenters who wonder what it would be like to be on a particular 1905 Manhattan street or at the 1922 Washington DC tidal basin. No one is alive to give a first-hand account. I like the 1941 Virginia crowded-bed photos that prompt personal memories from some commenters. But for Winstrol to say, “Man, to have lived in a time like that” about a scene from 1984, that makes me say, Hey! – I was 27 back then. (And I’m only 63 now.) So it’s not like that’s ancient history, you young person. We pre-oldsters remember the times of tall socks and short shorts and bad music and ridiculous hair. I think there was a hole in the ozone layer but global warming wasn’t a thing yet. Reagan was in his first term and Russians were bad commies. Cars were unremarkable. Living in the eighties was easy because although I was just a kid in the sixties, I knew I owed an eternal debt to all those hippies and freaks and protesters who did the heavy lifting that handed me sex & drugs & rock ‘n’ roll on a platter.

A different era.

A couple of guys have picked out something nice at that “Women” shop. Man, to have lived in a time like that.


The men's shorts were short but the other 80's giveaway is the length of the socks, especially the ones with the 3 colored stripes at the top.

Where are the boards?

I'm kidding, and it's a terrific picture! We have beach-side promenades made out of concrete or brick in NJ, like in Cape May or Bradley Beach, but Atlantic City and many other Jersey Shore towns still have the old wooden boards, like Atlantic City, Asbury Park. Some towns have begun replacing the wooden boards with trex composite planks, which last longer and warp less, but something's lost when you "upgrade" that way, and it doesn't sound or feel the same when you're walking or riding along.

Medical emergency or fight?

I wonder what is going on to the left of the red and green building in the middle of the picture? It appears to be two or three people on the ground in a pile. A few people around them seem interested but not the masses.

[Good question. -tterrace]

Nice Job

On reproducing a 1984 Kodacolor Mr. Terrace.
Did you use the negative or print?

[This is a scan of the negative. -tterrace]

Under the Pavement

It's "down by the sea" alright, but a "boardwalk"? Where's the "boards"? Looks like pavement.

I know, I know: "Boards?!? We don't need no stinkin' boards!!!"

Konica: Built Like a Tank

In 1972 my six year old Hanimex rangefinder camera was stolen. Actually, I left it in a phone booth (remember those?) for a few minutes and when I returned it was gone. I purchased a Konica Autoreflex T as a replacement, and took many thousands of photos over a forty year period. It was very reliable, and was rebuilt twice. I used mostly Kodachrome 25 and 64 colour slide film, but also Agfa, Kodak and Ilford black and white.

I went digital in 2010, and this photo of my Konica was taken with a Canon ELPH 360HS, my third digital camera. I did my own darkroom work for many years, but I enjoy the ability to edit photos on my computer without the use of chemicals. A scan of a Kodachrome slide produces a richer photo than a digital image. My father's Kodachromes from 1954 have held up very well. The Konica weighs just over 2 pounds, while the Canon is just under 8 ounces.

More leg

Shorts were shorter back then.

They're showing a lot of leg

Usually you can judge the approximate year of a picture by female hairstyles and attire. But here it's the males that date this photo to the 1980s.

Who Wears Short Shorts?

Surprisingly it doesn't look all that much different than a similar scene today, except for the length of the men's shorts!

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