I don’t know why I thought googling “1980’s pub food Mushroom and Nut Fettuccine” would get me a result because of course, the internet didn’t quite exist for this sort of information back then. I was mostly interested to know who produced this product – because aside from omelettes, it was the only vegetarian thing on most menus, when I first started ‘eating out’.

It must have come from one of the large food suppliers because it was the standard vegetarian fayre, served in the same earthen-wear dish wherever I had no choice but to order it. Sorry I couldn’t find a picture but the dish was fairly much like this one. Perhaps I took this home in a doggy bag with leftover fettuccine?! Unlikely! I’m sure the dish and portion size was smaller than you would expect now. And in my mind’s eye it’s a darker, yuckier brown – although that might just be the association with its tinned mushroom tasting contents.

I am a Generation X ‘Baby Buster’ according to Irene Waters, writer and memoirist over at her blog “Reflections and Nightmares”. This post (a nightmare) is a sort-of-response to her request for a short burst of memoir in response to a new monthly prompt “Times Past” aimed at giving some ‘social insights into the way the world has changed between not only generations but also between geographical location’. This first prompt is: The first time I remember eating in a restaurant in the evening.

I say its my ‘sort-of-response’ because my meal out memories are a bit disjointed and I can’t quite pin down a complete episode of the time in question. Nor can I remember an actual restaurant until I was into my 20s.

My hazy recollection of sitting in a high-end Lincolnshire pub, eating out for the first time, relate to when I was about 17 and a date with a would-be boyfriend who soon wasn’t. I’d been flattered into saying yes by this golf-pro’s keen pursuit when he wasn’t all that attractive.

The reality was as well, if you had a boyfriend back then, you’d most likely meet them down at the village disco rather than go out for a meal – unless you were really getting serious and possibly even considering ‘getting engaged’ which some of the local girls did.

I remember realising this particular evening, that a meal out wasn’t necessarily an ‘unconditional’ date; that there were probable expectations of more than good conversation in reciprocation.

More than all of that I remember a tongue large enough to choke a girl and “Imagination” playing on his car cassette player when I was more into David Bowie.

“I think I’ll go home now please”

Need a reminder of 1980’s cheesy music videos?! It’s just an illusion..