For those of a certain generation, the return of inflation brings back very bad memories.
We celebrate the music of the era and giggle fondly about the hairstyles and fashion but, from the late 1970s to the early 1990s, inflation was a constant menace.
It made us a poorer nation, eroding our purchasing power, undermining confidence and driving up the cost of borrowing.
Beating it into submission was something of a national triumph - underpinned by a world-leading central bank policy that was adopted widely around the globe.
But it came at a cost, mortgage rates went as high as 20 per cent, investment was stifled, growth stalled and unemployment rose into double digits.
So news this week, that New Zealand has just had its most inflationary quarter since 1987 (not counting self-imposed GST increases), was unwelcome.
Yes, there are specific pandemic-related issues behind much of it all.
The big economic shutdown of 2020 has thrown shipping schedules into chaos and created huge production backlogs that are rippling through global supply chains.
There is heated debate about whether this is transitory, or something more structural.
But with no obvious end in sight to pandemic disruption, it may be a moot point. It is with us for the foreseeable future, either way.
This week's local data - an annual inflation rate of 4.9 per cent - creates a number of problems for our economic recovery.
The most obvious for most of us is that we're spending more to live.
Big increases in the price of groceries fuel, power and rent hit the poorest hardest.
The more of your total income you have to spend just to get by each week, the more inflation hits you in the pocket.
Research by Stats NZ has shown that real cost of living rises at a higher rate for marginalised groups including Māori, beneficiaries and superannuitants.
Rising costs also undermine efforts to solve problems such as the housing crisis. Prices for construction of new houses were up 4.5 per cent for the quarter, and 12 per cent for the year.
Then there is debt.
On one level, high inflation suits borrowers. The value of a debt effectively shrinks as the value of the money is eroded by inflation.
Unfortunately, this tends to be more than offset by the efforts of central banks to control inflation by lifting interest rates.
During the last inflation spike in 2008 (prior to the GFC), the Reserve Bank pushed the Official Cash Rate to 8.5 per cent and mortgage rates were above 10 per cent.
That seems unthinkable now - and it probably is.
The huge surge in debt that has accompanied the housing boom of the past 15 years makes it difficult for central banks to hike rates dramatically - not just in New Zealand but around the world.
But it does mean that even small rises in the OCR will have a powerful effect in terms of sucking cash out of the economy.
As the RBNZ has said, the path ahead will require careful steps.
But for now, at least, its safe to assume those steps are on a path to higher rates.