Monday, September 13, 2010

Well this made me feel old.

While taking a break from the crazy that was work today I was searching around for some interesting news. I found this article.

Wear wristwatch? Use e-mail? Not for Class of ’14.

HELLO. Class of 14. (as in college) That is 9 years after I graduated college. The kids entering high school now were born mostly in 1992. WHAT. I was 10. Oh how I remember turning 10 and being SO excited to finally be double digits. It was so exciting. Mainly because I was older than most of my friends. And I was double digits and they were single digits. Sadly, that has recently come back to bite me in the ass as they remind me that I will most definitely be 30 before them. Fuckers. Love ‘em all. Still fuckers. (though what they don’t know is that I’m totally taking a page from my mother’s book and stopping at 29 so while they will continue to age, I will always and forever be 29. HA-HA)

But anyway, the point of this is not how I feel old, but how times change and that’s what this article is about. I thought it was neat so I figured I’d share with you all. You can read the whole article if you want, but basically it is just describing how and why Beloit College came up with this Mindset List to remind teachers that cultural references familiar to them might not mean anything to the incoming freshmen. This list can be found here -

I found this list rather interesting. For many reasons. 1. Because I remember a time before this stuff. And 2. Because I remember some of this stuff happening.

Like when CD-ROMs replaced floppy disks. And the fact that I still have some papers, from high school, on floppy disks. That I can’t retrieve because I don’t own a computer with a floppy disk drive anymore. Funny story about floppy disks though. The company I work for is 61 years old. And I was recently cleaning out some cabinets, because here? No one throws away anything. Proof? The BOXES (yes, plural) of floppy disks. AND the old floppy disk drive that was with it. Like someone might possibly put that drive in a computer to save something to these floppy disks. HA. And then looking at the storage size. I create files bigger than that on a regular basis. I could NOT imagine having to submit an electronic copy of a proposal on a floppy disk. Crazy.

“Email is just too slow, and they seldom if ever use snail mail.”

I remember having pen-pals. Writing to something in a magazine (or something like that) and getting a name and address in the mail. And mail from a complete stranger. And there was no danger in it (ok, I mean there was but not like today. Hello Craigslist killer. Right). Honestly, I wish I had actually kept in touch with those pen pals, I think that would have been neat. But somewhere along the line we stopped writing each other and I don’t think I could even remember their last names to try and look them up on Facebook. (which reminds me, when I signed up for FB it was just for college kids and you had to have a college email address to sign up. I tried to boycott because MySpace was way cooler…those were the days. Like what, 5 years ago?)

Kodachrome slides. To be honest, at first read I wasn’t sure what these were. Then I looked them up (thank you internet, what did I do before you…oh yeah, books.) But I do remember those. The original slide show. I remember being at my grandparents house and looking at slides of their vacations from long ago. I always felt like I was looking into the past (because, I was, but more so because my grandparents were like young in these slides). Suddenly, I wonder what ever happened to those things…

Nirvana. You know. Oldies. What. OLDIES. Come As You Are. Smells Like Teen Spirit. Songs of my youth. They take me back to Middle School. And I get an awesome flashback of younger, more carefree days whenever one of the songs that span the years of my youth. I wasn’t a huge Nirvana fan and I didn’t cry when Kurt Cobain killed himself like some of my friends, but I did enjoy some of their music and now I have Come As You Are stuck in my head. Maybe I’ll throw on the oldies station on my way home…But for real. Our music is oldies. This morning I was listening to an “oldies” country station. And could remember being in my first car (oh the boat, I miss that thing) and belting out some of those songs with my friends. Those were the days. I miss those days. Driving around aimlessly because we had nothing better to do. Signing along with the radio and telling stories over our singing and the radio because heaven forbid we turn the music down. Ahh the oldies. I wonder if this is how my parents feel when they listen to their oldies.

They never twisted the coiled handset wire aimlessly around their wrists while chatting on the phone. Those were the days. Though by the time I had a phone in my room, it was cordless. But I do remember dancing around in the kitchen on the phone with a really long cord that stretched all the way into the living room. It was always tangly. Like my phone at work. Those cords always get tangly. Shame we can’t have cordless phones at the office.

I could go on and on about a lot of things on this list. But I won’t. Some of the things I don’t really remember, because, well, I was still a kid when most of that stuff happened. But it is funny to look back. I remember when my parents would tell stories of their youth. Thinking they were crazy, and wondering how they survived. And now. When I think about what my kids will grow up with. I know. I just know. They will be baffled at how I survived high school with a pager, and by using books to do research, and how I had pictures on rolls of 35mm film that had to be developed before you could see the results of your photography. Those were the days.

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