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May the Force Be With You This Summer

Part of our job as parents is to make sure our kids are caught up on all the important cultural references they missed before they were born.  Sure, we have math packets and reading lists to tackle this summer, but I’m determined to whip out some ’80s movies and nostalgia to bring my children up to speed on what they really need to know.

Have you clued your kids in? Sit down with them and review these eight cultural references from our own childhoods to see how many they know. If they miss more than half, you have your work cut out for you this summer. What would you add as a cultural must?

  1.  Where does the expression, “May the force be with you,” come from?
  2. Who said, “Just say no” and what was she talking about?
  3. Who said, “I’ll be right here?”
  4. What are they talking about when somebody says, “Where’s the beef?”
  5. If somebody says, “Gag me with a spoon,” what language are they speaking?
  6. Who said, “Eat my shorts?”
  7. Nobody puts Baby here…
  8. Why do they need a bigger boat?


  1. The line has been said by at least one character in each of the "Star Wars" movies.
  2. “Just Say No” was a slogan in the U.S. “War on Drugs” that was created and championed by First Lady Nancy Reagan.
  3. "ET."
  4. Originally a Wendy’s hamburger, but today it means anything that appears to be lacking substance. 
  5. Valspeak, the "d"ialect spoken by stereotypical Californian Valley girls.
  6. Bart Simpson on "The Simpsons."
  7. The corner.
  8. "Jaws!"