Fashion, television shows, films, and other forms of entertainment has seen a regurgitation of the era that is the 90s. The world has noticed that kids from the 90s are nostalgic and are now capitalizing on the throwbacks. However, 90s kids aren’t complaining.
I was nine years old when my parents purchased and installed our brand-new Gateway Desktop computer. We set it up in an odd section of the living room where, if I’m not mistaken, only a lamp stood. The monitor was massive, the keyboard was clunky, and everything, including the mouse, was wrapped up and connected with wires that were plugged into the same surge protector where the lamp used to sit proudly. We had never had a computer in the house before that day, and I was so excited to hear the loud and slightly annoying dial-up tone that connects my world to the world wide web. However, I had no idea how my entire life would change forever
I didn’t get on the computer often, and when I did, I was supervised. The computer was in the damn living room for God’s sake. I would use it to gather references for book reports and scientific papers, but I mostly just found myself on Barbie.com or messing around in Microsoft Paint. I had no clue how to use the computer properly, but I figured it out.
By the time I entered high school I was on the computer every day. I had my own desktop computer in my room that I used to use LimeWire for music, get on Myspace, and watch every single Beatles clip on YouTube before Google took ownership of the site. The year I entered college, I was no longer afraid to access the internet on my phone. I received my first smartphone and was able to walk around with an instant connection to the entire world sitting in my pocket.
Like the generations before them, and unlike the children today, the adults who were born in the ’90s remember a world without smartphones, computers, tablets, or the Internet. The difference between the two distinct groups is the fact that those born in the early ’90s grew up with the incredibly rapid change of technology. We adapted from chalkboards to whiteboards and from whiteboards to smartboards in the classroom. We watched the development of online and hybrid classes at the University level, witnessed the rise and power of social media, and saw the globalization of the world through the rapidly evolving connectivity of the internet of things. When those born in the ’90s looks back on their 30 or fewer years of life, they get a whiplash of incredible events that seemed as though they should have lasted several lifetimes. Because of this, the kids from the 90s nostalgically look back on this decade to a similar time before the tech boom.
The kids of the 90s are oddly stuck between a generation who have not grown up with and who do not feel entirely comfortable with technology at all, and a generation who was probably born with a smartphone in their face. There also stuck between a generation that believed, if you worked hard and go to college then you would succeed in life and a generation of the new world who knows better.
The kids from the ’90s also grew up during a time where streaming was a concept unheard of. When we listened to music, they were on CDs that you paid to listen to. There was no exploring genres and songs you were unsure about because listening to music was a risky investment. Instead of being able to turn off a bad movie that you were streaming on Netflix, your movie night in the ’90s would have been ruined if someone had to return a movie to Blockbuster before they closed and get a new videotape or DVD. There were no recording of TV shows and being able to binge watch series. It took time and effort to find something new to consume in the 90s, which is why many of the kids of the 90s became emotionally invested in content from that era.
Those who were born in the 90s will always have this odd obsession with recapturing a piece of their youth when everything was drastically different from what it is today. Kids born in the 90s came into the world on the cusp of a new age, and because we’re still so young, we still need time to get used to it. Although I’m only 28 years old, I feel as though I’ve been around the sun more than a million times. So much has happened in such a short span of time. It makes sense that, occasionally, I indulge in thinking back to a time when time passed a little slower, and I could catch my breath before the latest piece of technology crapped out on me, and I had to purchase the next new device.