The 90’s are back, motherfathers, and it’s not just because we ran out of ideas, it’s because we left some good ones behind. Grab your fuzzy pens, and take notes, girls. This list is bout-it, bout-it.
1. . Ain’t No Slang But A Chicken Wang!
If you want the 411 on how to sound fly, the 90s were all that and a bag of chips. Playful, flirty and filled with joy, the 90s were an innocent time where "Oh, snap!" was the only four letter word you needed. Sure, "talk to the hand" had its days, but such is the price of fame. Disagree, and you can eat my shorts. You think any other decade had a better slang repertoire? As if.
2. . We Can Pretend Everything Was Awesomer Than They Were
20/20 hindsight means rose colored glasses. When we look back at the past, what we're actually looking at is a "scan memory," or as The Association for Consumer Research calls it, "not a true recreation of the past, but rather a combination of many different memories, all integrated together, and in the process all negative emotions filtered out." Don't believe me? Go back and watch an episode of Friends, and if you still like it and don't mind that it's occasionally full blown racist, then we can agree to disagree that the 90s stand the test of time. Seriously, though, they were pretty bomb.com.
3. . Cell Phones Were A Big Deal, But They Didn't Run Our Lives
Never in the history of cellular technology has there been a fashion icon and innovator as, you guessed it, Zack Morris. When he whipped that cheese block of a cell phone out, he was the coolest guy in school! And yet, he didn't spend all of his time trying to prove it on Snapchat. Say what you will about social media, but I think it's making us sad. I miss my Nokia and the days where if I got really lost and would call my mom to ask for help, but I wasn't so addicted that I was willing to risk my life by texting while I drive.
4. . It Was An Era of PG-13
R-Rated comedies come and go in pop culture. In the 70s, it was like, "Bush is about to get elected into office for a reason." Then it toned down a little in the 80s, and by the 90s, Baywatch was about as far as anyone was willing to go. Victoria's Secret catalogues were the most exciting thing ever, and no one was emailing you porn. A little prude? Perhaps. But if my mama taught me anything, it's to leave 'em wanting more... And also that Lunchables don't count as real food.
5. . Ice Skaters Were Our Sports Stars
Football be damned! I don't even know what a triple sow cow is, but I'll be damned if Soria Bonalie turning a backflip didn't make my heart skip a goddamned beat. I'm talking Michelle Kwan, people. Oksana Baiul. Sports heroes who wore glitter hairspray to the Olympics and didn't leave competitions two concussions away from chronic traumatic encephalopathy.
6. . Bands That Were Annoying Traveled In A Group
Those tween idols stuck together! Backstreet Boys, N'Sync, The Spice Girls. Sure, their music was cotton candy in that you couldn't stop consuming it - even when it gave you a headache - but there was at least a range of annoying characteristics about them. Identify as the rebellious one? Grow up to be AJ or Scary Spice. Secretly think you're a princess? Posh Spice or Justin Timberlake! It's not quite as progressive as allowing A-list celebrities to be multi-vacated on their own, but at least it was something. Nowadays it feels like pop music is, well... kind of out of sync.
7. . Too Many Grunge Bands vs Too Many Pop Princesses
Nirvana, Bush, Pearl Jam, Live.... Sure, they had their moments of suck, too, but I'll take an underproduced garage band versus an overproduced pop queen any day of the week. Now we have glow sticks and Pepsi sponsorships where mosh pits once thrived.
8. . We Had Our First Out Lesbian
Ellen De Generes, a popular working comedian with a television series with her name in the title, did something she never thought she would do: she came out as a lesbian, and it ruined her career for a decade. Overnight she went from girl on fire to the butt of every joke. And then the news settled, and being gay got that much less scary for everyone. And yes, many more have come before and after her, but let it not go unnoticed that until 1997 we did not have a lead on a sitcom who openly acknowledged being gay. Also, she was the first female comedian to be invited to sit on Johnny Carson's couch after her first appearance as a stand up on the show. Also, she was Dory. #NeverForget
9. . We Had Fewer Limits But More Limitations
Back then, we were told "you can do anything!" which led to a generational paralysis from having too many perceived options and not being able to decide on anything to actually stick with. That's why that guy in the club macking on you is an actor/model/DJ/entrepreneur/personal trainer in his 30s. There's an old adage where a mama fish tells a baby fish in a fishbowl that "she can do anything," but the reality of that bowl suggested otherwise. Then again, not spending half of your life distracted by trying to launch your own business, open a shop on Etsy, design an app, create a strong social media following and finish your novel has its upsides, as well.