I was a teenager in the early 90s.
If you were a teen then too, let's list some memories that make us feel old.
When I was a teenager...
*Cell phones were still pretty new and called "Car phones." You used them for emergencies and shut them off when done.
*I'd call my mom for a ride from school using a pay phone (which cost 10 cents).
*There was no Facebook or Twitter or email. I did not spend any time on the Internet -- it cost 2.99 per minute and tied up the phone line. If an incoming call came in, I'd be knocked off.
*To record a favorite show, I'd use a VHS tape. Laser discs were the high-tech thing, and Tivo was not around.
*Mixed tapes (not even CDs!) were a romantic gift. Sometimes I'd tape my favorite songs off the radio.
Man I feel old.
I'd rather forget the entire decade.
I was imparted with a fear of HIV/AIDS so intense—people were still dropping dead with no effective treatments—that I've never had a satisfying sex life.
I was a suicidal gay teen in the midwest, and if I could have gotten a glimpse into how things were going to turn out for me, I would have killed myself then and there.
Oh look, a proto-Eldergay.
I had a beeper. it had a toll free number. I was, needless to say, hot shit!
I don't know who OP thinks she is fooling. She writes far too old to be the Class of 96.
Plus, phone calls were a quarter by then, gramps.
Doc Martin boots and flannel shirts everywhere. It was a good time.
I remember all the boys had high-tops.
You graduated in '96, OP? I graduated in '94, which means I'm two years older than you. You're a child.
Class of 1990 here. I have no recollection of payphone calls costing a dime. I do know many members of my "Generation X" clan are, like the OP, bizarrely self-obsessed.
OP, you seem to be under the delusion that there are many, or even *any*, DLers under the age of 25 who wouldn't similar remember all of your observations. We established long ago that the average age here is about 50. (Btw your post sounds rather troll-y, particularly the 10-cent phone call part, so it will surprise none of us if you turn out to be an eldergay in trolling guise.)
Wow, OP. Did you ride your velocipede to school? When you came home on the streetcar, had the girl who did for you helped Katie the cook make homemade catsup?
Very high bangs in high-school. Lots of teasing and hairspray. Bike shorts. Acid wash. (Wait - I might be slightly heading in '88-90.)
Ferris Bueller. Real Genius. Reality Bites.
No answering machine growing up - you were either home to get calls or you didn't get them. We didn't have a dishwasher or VCR (which were the exciting new things when I was growing up).
I didn't have a pager, but lots of guys did. I used payphones regularly when out. Payphones used to be everywhere- they had to be, so all the people with pagers could call back.
By the 90s coin phones with three slots ... ding for a nickel, ding ding for a dime, and dong for a quarter were obsolete.
Class of '94 here and it's almost hard for me to remember what life was like before cell phones and the Internet, and I was relatively late to both. I didn't get on the Internet until '99 and didn't get a cell phone until 2000. I honestly don't know how I lived without either.
[quote]By the 90s coin phones with three slots ... ding for a nickel, ding ding for a dime, and dong for a quarter were obsolete.
Honey, dong for a quarter was obsolete by the 1890s.
Someone asking for dong for a quarter?
I was class of 2000. Life really was simpler back then. My god the world has changed. Btw music was shit by 1995, but still much better than today.
[quote]No answering machine growing up - you were either home to get calls or you didn't get them. We didn't have a dishwasher or VCR (which were the exciting new things when I was growing up).
Good God, did you grow up in sub-Saharan Africa?? Or in the projects? Class of '90 here. We got our first answering machine and VCR around 1982 or so, and first home computer the year after. Our house had a dishwasher long before I was born!
Class of 97. There was no mobile technology, everyone in high school hung out with their friends and actually "hung out" with them. There were no mobile distractions, so when you went to your friend's house to watch a movie, get high, play video games, joke around, or do nothing, there was nothing in your pocket to distract you. It was pretty great actually. I cannot stand being with younger people who think nothing of staring into their "device" while I'm talking to them. Pretty fucking rude.
Also remember cheap gas, so road trips were always an option for fun.
Music was great in the early 90s, all of it. Even pop music like En Vogue seems brilliant by today's standards.
Just fell into a YouTube hole and found this vid. Didn't even know this happened a few years back. Sweet!
[quote]*I'd call my mom for a ride from school using a pay phone (which cost 10 cents).
Um, no. It was a quarter for as long as I can remember, and I am class of '96. I suspect OP means class of 1896.
The biggest change since then, in my opinion, is the access to porn.
In my day, (class of '93), porn consisted of either me stealing one of my dad's VHS tapes, the International Male Catalog, or pressing record on the VCR before bed and letting it record Cinemax over night.
You remember the guides that used to come at the beginning of the month for the cable networks? I remember waiting for them in the mail and studying them, circling the ones that sounded like they had explicit sex scenes in them. And God Created Woman, with Rebecca De Mornay anyone? Up All Night with Rhonda Shear?
I didn't see a gay porn movie until I was 22.
Ha, R25! I was pretty much the same, although my parents were divorced and I had no access to my dad's porn stash (if it existed). Didn't see my first real gay porno until I was 20 or 21, and it was actually *after* I'd lost my virginity to a guy.
Yes, access to porn was very hard to come by if you were under 18. I taped 'Calendar Girl' with Jason Priestley's nude beach scene and 'School Ties' with Brendan Fraser and Matt Damon's nude shower scene off of HBO and when no one was in the house I popped those tapes into the VCR, hit slo-mo, and went to town. Occasionally I would get my hands on a magazine like Hustler which had naked men in it in hetero pictorials and that was as far as I got. Like the above posters, I didn't even see my first gay porn until after I'd turned 18 and could legally enter an adult sex shop. The only adult sex shop in my area was a 1/2 hour drive.
Crazy how technology has changed our lives. Today we can get any kind of porn we want instantly over the Internet. If that technology existed when I was a teen, my world would have been so different.
[quote]'School Ties' with Brendan Fraser and Matt Damon's nude shower scene
Holy shit, me too! (and btw you left out Chris O'Donnell's bare ass) I had more wanks to that as a youth than I can even count, as well as a HUGE crush on Fraser for many years thereafter.
R24, you're a regular Nancy Drew now aren't you. Why, I think you're the very first person here to point that out.
Class of 2000 here. All of us who graduated between 1990 and 2005 should band together to destroy the DL's fortysomethings and fiftysomethings. Enough threads about Mae West and mussyswell.
R13, you're Gen Y.
R61. You're a baby boomer not gen x. Baby boomers were born between 1946-1964. You're class of 81 so you were born in 1962 or 63.
One ringy-dingy, two ringy-dingy!
Gen X is like from 1965 to 1983 or something. I'm Gen X born in 1975 class of '93.
Meant R31 in my post not R61
1967 to 1981 is Generation X.
ElderGay - Prior to 1946.
I graduated HS at age 16, R32. My ex-assistant, Gen Y born in 1975, went to college in the 90s, and didn't know how one skipped ahead to the next song on a vinyl LP.
Cds were supposed to be the last word in recorded music. How could anything get better than that lol? I don't miss cds and the space they took up at all. Much more convenient to have all my music in an ipod and on my laptop/tablet. I used to have almost an entire wall full of cd cases; and remember the stereo systems? You'd load 10 cds in those fuckers and when you went to rotate them it would never play the one you wanted, so you'd have to open the damn thing and rearrange them all. And then it still wouldn't play the right cd.
Oh, and going to half a dozen stores to find a cd you wanted to buy, and none of them carried it so you'd have to special order. Pain. In. The. Ass.
I love downloading and having every song in one portable device - it's so much more convenient and saves so much space - no clutter, etc.
Amen to R23, I graduated the year before and really miss hanging out with any distractions. I cannot imagine being out on a date and having someone texting the whole time, that would drive me up a wall.
Also, if a guy didn't call or whatever, you could tell yourself he was "busy". Now, you have FB/Twitter/IM/Instagram and what have you telling you that he is in fact not too busy to call, LOL.
[quote]ElderGay - Prior to 1946.
In your dreams, gramps.
The mid-70's are certainly still Generation X, R38.
Wikipedia has Generation Y as "the early 1980s to the early 2000s". I have never heard it described as anything but 80's on...
[quote]I don't miss cds and the space they took up at all.
CDs are still around, sweetie.
[quote]and remember the stereo systems?
They're still around, too.
They're still around r43, but I don't know anyone who uses them except older people.
And I knew this thread would become a pissing contest about the exact dates of birth of Gen X and Gen Y. Can you all move it to another thread please? These stories are fun.
This thread was D.O.A.
[quote]I don't know anyone who uses them except older people.
Older people? What are you, twelve?
R36 is correct. I have no idea why Wikipedia has such a broad definition of "Gen Y," but if we go back to the actual *source* of the term Generation X -- Douglas Coupland, who literally wrote the book on it -- the era covers those both between the late '60s and early '80s (but mostly defined people who are now 38 to 45 years old). And yes, I'm smack-dab in the middle of that demo, and still remember when we were routinely denigrated as the "slacker generation" (not so much now that we've had an actual Gen X man run for vice-president).
Class of 92 here. It was great. Just hanging with friends, having to be creative to entertain ourselves. Prank calling people, tp'ing houses, after school clubs or sports practice, no stupid cell phones or internet.
When entering college through the mid-90's I had a couple of beepers - lol. Thought that was the shit. I wasn't into the grunge look so I remember thinking the fashion SUCKED. Girls were plucking their eyebrows terribly thin and penciling them on, way too much makeup. Even skincare wasn't as good then as it is now, though.
TLC, Boyz 2 Men, Karen White, lots of good R&B. Of course Michael Bolton was HUGE and he fucking sucked. OMG.
Martha Stewart had a bazillion groupies, yuppies from the Boomer generation were really in full swing then. Labels were still HUGE. I remember my sister bought about a hundred shares of Liz Claiborne stock.
Alanis Morrisette, meh.
Movies like Pretty Woman, Thelma and Louise, Silence of the Lambs, and the earlier Batman movies were all HUGE. Me and my mom went to see Steel Magnolias three times.
And one last word: ZIMA!
[quote]Alanis Morrisette, meh.
The first time I ever got drunk was on Zima.
I think I still have the taste of it in my mouth.
The Voice of the Night
Hey OP, I too am Class of '96, grew up in the Northeast, and I have no problem remembering that pay phones used to cost a dime. Where I lived, it wasn't until 1997 that rates went up to a quarter. I am wondering if this is a regional or state-by-state thing, because I am more than a little surprised that no other DLers seem to remember this.
R51, it could very well be regional. Until the mid-'80s there was no national telephone regulation per se; the old "Baby Bells" ran the show, at least until federal regulators decided to unify them all under the AT&T name. In my region Southwestern Bell had a monopoly, and pay phone calls were definitely 25 cents by the early '80s.
The 90s were amazing. After the Reagan years it was a breath of fresh air. The economy was booming, we had the first president to address the gay community, music was good, the advent of CGI technology, we finally had the world wide web, gay visibility was at an all-time high with shows like Ellen, Roseanne, and so on.
[quote]we had the first president to address the gay community
...by signing DADT and DOMA into law? Great "address" there, Bill.
Isn't it a bit soon to be reminiscing about the 90's? Snap out of it, people.
[quote]...by signing DADT and DOMA into law? Great "address" there, Bill.
Yes. It saved us. Be grateful, twat.
Saved us from what, R56??
I came of age around the same time as OP and well..... he sounds about 20 years older. Kids had cellphones in class when I was in high school. They were bigger, etc... but they had them. We also had email, etc.
DADT and DOMA were compromises struck with Congress to keep the Republicans from pushing for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage altogether. Clinton really knew what he was doing at the time.
R58 is correct. Although I'm older than him, I got my first e-mail account in '93 and first cell phone in '95, though I was admittedly an early adopter (and the phone was a massive piece of shit that dropped practically every call).
R47, The source you quote is not the inventor. He just popularized it with a book. True Gen-X is early 60s, to early 80s.
Baby boomer were already in their 20s by the time the 60's rolled around.
And on another note, baby boomers were the ME generation for 2 decades! Also the first generation to default on student loans with not repercussions making it harder for the rest of us. Raised the worst kids (50% would rather leave their money to charity) and will be the first generation to bankrupt social security.
[quote]DADT and DOMA were compromises struck with Congress to keep the Republicans from pushing for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage altogether. Clinton really knew what he was doing at the time.
Please. Clinton and the Republicans were playing a game of chicken and Clinton swerved first. Even in the mid-'90s, the likelihood of a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage actually making it into law was exceedingly unlikely.
R61, you *really* need to stop getting your info straight from Wikipedia. While the term "Generation X" may have pre-dated the book of the same name, the popular *definition* of the term is "people who entered adulthood in the late 1980s." Under NO definition does that include people born in the early '60s, who would've been in their late 20s by then, or anyone born after 1975 or so. Furthermore, the term didn't enter the popular lexicon until the '90s. Also, the WIDELY accepted range of the post-WWII baby boom is children born between 1946 and 1964.
Are you next going to argue that we should consider the beginning of the "Internet era" to be 1969, since that's when the DARPA network first launched? (never mind that no one except tech geeks had ever heard of it until 25 years later)
Class of '94 here.
Smashing Pumpkins. Goo Goo Dolls. Blind Mellon. Sarah Mclaclan. U2 Zooropa tour. The Carnberries. Green Day. Counting Crows.
Class of '93 here. There were "bag phones" that cost $4-$5 per minute of talk time. Most people who had one used it only for emergencies. It was a technology that had rapid advances in the late 90s. The first portable cellphones were those big brick monsters in the 80s but they did not start getting smaller until the 90s. It was not until the late 90s that they started to become more of a commodity that people started using on a day-to-day basis, so it's entirely plausible that some people had different experiences with phones within the same 10 year period.
R65, my first cell phone in 1995 was small enough to keep in my front pocket. "Bag phones" were long gone by then.
Well, I had a roommate in 1995 who had her brand new bag phone installed in her VW because she had a job where she drove long distances a lot, and her dad insisted on buying it for her to use in emergencies. I'm not saying that flip phones didn't start to exist at the same time, but you're simply wrong on this point. As with any technology, there is a period of overlap.
I remember rushing home from school to catch TRL on MTV where Nsync and Backstreet Boys battled for the #1 spot with Britney, Christina, Blink 182, Limp Bizkit, Eminem, Korn and Marilyn Manson filling out the rest of the TOP 10.
Also, enjoying the fairly new snack -- Flaming Hot Cheetos and washing it down with a Snapple.
Oh yeah and I remember being excited about a new teen focused network, The WB, where I watched shows like Sister, Sister; Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Dawson's Creek.
All the "edgy" kids at school had NIN patches on their back packs.
'99 is still too late into the decade for this thread. Boy Bands and Britney were later. Thank God.
Think 90210, Melrose Place, Blossom,Fresh Prince of BelAir, even that show with Urkel. Can't remember the name. MTV still played videos. The Real World (NYC) had just come out for the first time. It was actually interesting. And the Simpsons! That was the new show, everyone thought it would be cancelled after one season.
Nirvana was huge if you were into that; Pearl Jam was getting there...if you weren't, there was early kd lang, indigo girls, that natalie merchant band - forget the name now.
The McRib came out around this time - 1990 I believe - and it was sooo good! You could still play arcade games like PacMan in Pizza Hut. Big hair WAS still in - high tops for guys, big poofs for chicks.
Definitely mid-90's before anyone I really knew had a dvd player or rented them. Everyone still used VHS mostly and Blockbuster must;ve been raking in the $$$ back then.
In the early 90's you could still look in the classifieds section of the paper and find airline tickets for sale by owner. You could buy their (unused) ticket and use it at the counter no problem no questions asked. Then it got to be some kind of racket and it stopped.
Taco Bell was new and very popular. Sushi hadn't really become a "thing" in middle America then (only on the coasts for the most part).
In the early nineties I rarely paid more than $1.20 for a gallon of gas. We thought nothing of filling up the tank and cruising for HOURS, getting lost on backroads, taking long trips to other colleges to see friends. Gas wasn't even thought of as part of the budget.
True about gas. When I was in high school in the early 90s I distinctly remember filling up my tank (when it was empty and running on fumes) for $10-$12. Today is costs $50 or even more. I smoked back then and a pack of cigs was $2. I don't know how people can smoke today without taking out a second mortgage, cigs are so damn expensive now.
I didn't know anyone who had a cell phone until about '97 (this was in the Northeast) and even then it was only a handful of people and they rarely used them. In my experience, cell phones didn't become ubiquitous until around the year 2000. I'm sure, of course, the timeline for cell phones was different for other people depending on socioeconomic status and whether or not they lived in a large city like NY or LA.
Having to find a payphone when you were out somewhere and had to make a phone call was such a pain in the ass, and many times the payphone didn't work at all. I can't even remember the last time I saw a payphone anywhere, except in an airport terminal.
Home computers that were big honking desktops with gigantic monitors, and dial-up Internet connections that were slow as hell. No video on the Internet. Having an extra-long phone cord to plug into the phone jack that was on the other side of the room, and always tripping over it.
I'm class of '98 and the only kid in my school who had a cell phone was the school drug dealer.
Since when is a generation 9 years r63, 1965-1974? That makes no sense. As you pointed out yourself, the baby boomers span about 18 years. So it would make sense that Gen X would be about from 1965 to 1983. I was born in 1975 and am definitely part of Gen X.
anyway - 90s to me are also Fahrenheit, Cool Water, Jazz, Obsession and Eternity. My uncle just 10 years older than me bathed in Drakkar Noir and Gray Flannel. It's amazing how that cheap cologne smell turns me on till this day.
r69, shut the fuck up! If that person graduated in 1999 they were at least 10 in 1990. You dumb fuck.
R73 I was correctly stating that boy bands and Britney were NOT early 90's. Unclench, sweets.
"Having to find a payphone when you were out somewhere and had to make a phone call was such a pain in the ass, and many times the payphone didn't work at all."
What's interesting to me when I look back on it is that, while I definitely remember using the pay phone at school to call my mom for a ride home (before I got my license), I don't actually remember using pay phones much at all when I was out and about. Like, I don't really remember being out with other kids and saying "Let's call so-and-so and see what he's doing." In my experience, it was more like we made our plans over the phone at home, then went out and did them - nothing like today where you can be in touch with various people at all stages of the night, meet up with different groups, etc.
And also, of course, you didn't have the phone number of every single person you knew with you at all times, like today. I know I had a few closest friends' numbers memorized, but other than that, without the school directory or whatever to look them up in, I wouldn't have known their number even if I had wanted to call them when I was out. I suppose I would have called information, but unless they had an unusual last name, you would have had to know their parents' names or what street they lived on in order to know which listing was theirs.
Oh, and then of course there was the issue that you couldn't call after a certain hour when their parents would have gone to bed. I never really thought about how different that is for teenagers today, that they can get in touch with each other at 12 or 1 in the morning if they want to. For us, if you hadn't gotten in touch with somebody by 9:30 (and even that was pushing it with some of the crankier parents), you weren't gonna be talking to them until the next day.
I own this thread, bitches!
Zak and AC Slater gliding me along in my confusing puberty - first celeb crushes no doubt
Knowing that Beavis and Butthead were a spinoff from Liquid Televsion (most surreal show ever on MTV)
Seeing Jurassic Park in the theater after reading the book and then running off to McDonald's to get the collectors cup (my stepmother threw them all away over 10 years ago and I could still kill her)
Renting a VCR or NES from the video store
Sugary food actually contained real sugar
Seeing Tommy on Broadway
Loathing The Real World's Puck
Kids weren't doped up on medication
Hearing Vogue for the first time ever, hahaha
Wishing I had Cinemax
Oh, and watching a new episode of the Simpsons was an event. The first 7 seasons are still brilliant television.
And, of course, The Golden Girls on Lifetime from 6-7pm and again at 11pm.
[italic]Just Say Julie[/italic]
Pre-Internet "online services"
No one I had ever heard of was autistic, or had an autistic kid.
NO ONE had a peanut allergy!
[quote]I know I had a few closest friends' numbers memorized, but other than that, without the school directory or whatever to look them up in, I wouldn't have known their number even if I had wanted to call them when I was out.
Really? Maybe I'm just good with numbers, but I had the phone numbers of anyone I talked to regularly or semi-regularly memorized. Hell, I still remember the phone number at the house we moved out of when I was six!
[quote]Oh, and then of course there was the issue that you couldn't call after a certain hour when their parents would have gone to bed. I never really thought about how different that is for teenagers today, that they can get in touch with each other at 12 or 1 in the morning if they want to.
Not to be a cunt, but did you grow up poor? Or out in the sticks? I really don't remember anyone I was friends with in high school who didn't have a separate number from their parents and a phone in their bedroom. At the time I thought it was irritating enough that I had to share a line with my brother, let alone my parents.
A&E showed art and entertainment
AMC showed American movie classics
BRAVO showed artistic TV. First time I had ever seen Into the Woods was on Bravo
[quote]Zak and AC Slater gliding me along in my confusing puberty - first celeb crushes no doubt
I'll see your Saved by the Bell and raise you a Marky Mark Calvin Klein poster.
The Voice of the Night
That Marky Mark post just brought back (pardon the pun) a flood of memories. I hate that douche Wahlberg now, but all the spunk I spanked out beating off to pics of him in his underwear back in the early 90s (I was a teen) could have populated a small nation. This pic in particular kept me going for months.
As I posted earlier, in the days before Internet porn you had to take whack-off material any way you could get it.
Poison - Christian Dior
Obsession, Eternity, and later...lol...CK1 - Calvin Klein
Giorgio perfume for women - who made that one? It was huge from the late 80's into the early 90's. As was YSL.
I've never been a cologne guy, but Grey Flannel smelled really nice. Is it still on the market?
"Not to be a cunt, but did you grow up poor? Or out in the sticks? I really don't remember anyone I was friends with in high school who didn't have a separate number from their parents and a phone in their bedroom."
Nope, r81, I grew up middle-class in the suburbs of Boston, but I knew very few people who had a separate phone number from their parents.
R81, you sound insufferable.
I didn't know any kids with a separate land line, and we were all upper-middle class.
A good friend of mine spent one summer in CA with his father, and we talked long-distance on the phone constantly. When my parents got the phone bill, they almost killed me.
[quote]AMC showed American movie classics
TLC was The Learning Channel and showed educational programming, not the inbred likes of "Honey Boo Boo."
I remember when Bravo played old arty movies and Twin Peaks reruns.
Back in my day (the 1980s), most kids didn'thave their own phone lines becuase the parents didn't want them having that level of freedom.
I graduated in 2007, so I guess I can't relate to this thread. Have to admit, doesn't make me feel as old as I thought I was.
Oh please, R94, you're a baby.
I recall calling Ma Bell to get the time and the weather. We didn't have 24 news, fast Internet or smartphones.
Class of. 97
I still have trouble believing kids are allowed to have cell phones in schools these days. I just can't imagine.
Speaking of pay phones, remember being able to call 411 information for free and get any phone number? That lasted up until the late 90s. I remember my bf and I getting drunk and wandering home through the city calling 411 from every payphone and demanding to be connected to Tituba.
[quote]Speaking of pay phones, remember being able to call 411 information for free and get any phone number?
You could also call any area code in the USA followed by 555-1212 and get any phone number for free.
There was another facility where you dialled a code then the number you wanted and you could ask for the call to be charged to your home phone number. I'm sure this was abused.
[quote]Not to be a cunt, but did you grow up poor? Or out in the sticks? I really don't remember anyone I was friends with in high school who didn't have a separate number from their parents and a phone in their bedroom. At the time I thought it was irritating enough that I had to share a line with my brother, let alone my parents.
Oh really r81? So everyone you knew had a separate number from their parents? People who didn't have their own phone line were poor?
What a joke. You sound pretentious. I'm not even sure I believe half of your story.