‘Back in my day’: Millennial Edition
One day, when I’m an old hag sitting in a rocking chair on my front porch holding a shotgun, thinking it’s been a while since I last saw Atticus Finch, I expect to be approached by my
illegitimate love children grandchildren, who will ask me sweetly “Yo G’ma, wut wuz life liek bak in ur day?” (because this will be the natural progression of the English language, and the dang kids will use chatspeak out loud).
I already have a number of responses up my cotton-laced sleeve to share with today’s children, who can’t even remember a time before the internet. I’m a ‘millennial’, which means my generation was born sometime from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s. In addition to the obvious Rainbow Brite, Captain Planet and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, here are some things I’ll get to talk about to the kids of the future.
Back in my day…
- Pluto was a planet! Now you may think it’s just a rock far out in space, but back in elementary school they taught us about Pluto, the planet. It may sound like pseudoscience hubbrub to you now–no, hubbrub isn’t a real word, but it could have been back in my day–we were all going to listen to whatever the nice peoplemen at NASA had to say. Was it even NASA? I don’t know! Speak up, sonny!
- (For the Canadians) We had $2 bills. They were made of paper. What do you kids have now–plastic? Why, I remember when we switched to plastic money! The Americans made more fun of us, but the Aussies thought we were really cool. Besides, our money was colored (we weren’t racist) so we could always find the right bill even when we were drunk. I also remember when they created toonies! Do you still have those these days? No? You don’t use any tangible money? You dangednogood kids just use credit? Well, let me tell you something else. We used to have a one cent coin called the penny. Then we got rid of that, too! How the hell am I supposed to sing ‘hot cross buns’ now? One a loonie, two a toonie, hot cross…ahhh, screw it.
- I remember when we used to use incandescent bulbs. Ah, to
burnwarm yourself on the fire hazarddelightful glass shells…We switched to LEDs, which were brighter, smaller, cooler, and lasted longer. But what good did that do? They no longer cooked the branches on the Christmas tree, releasing that wonderful pine smell…hey, is something burning?
- I recall there was a time when there was no internet–or rather, when I did not yet have access to it. And when we got it–ooohhh, the soothing sound of the dial-up was enough to make anyone squeal with glee. We had no idea that we would one day be able to access it much more quickly, and from virtually anywhere. Except on Nikumaroro Island. You probably couldn’t get internet access there. If Amelia Earhart can’t, then no one can’t!
- We used to have phones that plugged into the wall. No, you couldn’t take them anywhere. What was the point, you ask? This was before cell phones. Yes, there was a time before cell phones. We even left messages on our friends’ answering machines! A whole separate machine that automagically took messages for you? Sign me up! But alas, landlines and voicemail are on their deathbed.
- We thought touch screens were crazy ideas of the future! And then we started having cell phones with touch screens. Ah, to be able to zoom with my own fingers–it was like I had magic powers. I commanded the angry plague of birds that harassed me via the screen. They eventually learned to do my bidding. You and your fantasmical holograms might think you’re all ‘progressive’ now, but just you wait until your very own
illegitimate love childrengrandchildren ask you what it was like in your day.
Oh, you really want to feel old? Check out this tumblr: http://wannafeelold.tumblr.com