It’s not every day that I reminisce of forgotten decades, let alone past centuries, but this flashback is courtesy of the bar below my house that’s currently dishing out tunes that make me feel like I’m in a Now That’s What I Call Music 32 prank I’m not aware of. The repertoire has included such classics as a butchered version of Alanis’ of You Oughta Know and Cher’s tone-deaf version of Walking in Memphis; I’m suddenly a pimply teenager again with a broken sound system rocking to the tunes and dare I say I’m feeling nostalgic.
A quick glance at photos of me at the time confirm that there is no reason to miss the early years of dressing like a boy with oversized t-shirts and shoes that I would rather die than wear today. It’s clear upon re-inspection that awkward arms dangling uncomfortably do little by way of distracting from my big frizzy hair. Were there no hair products at the time? A quick look at the cast of 90210 confirms that the world chose to boycott good looks in the 90s — with the exception of Luke Perry whose waxy do and forehead wrinkles still reeks absolute coolness.
I remember my 3 CD hi-fi as a sacred shrine of trite music, later superseded by my green discman. Ask a kid today about having a hi-fi and wait for the “Don’t you mean wi-fi?” At first, I used to cringe upon the realization that all the kids I teach were born well into the 90s and have no recollection of the decade. Dr Martens might as well be an obscure doctor, not a shoe brand; Screech is most definitely a verb, not a character from Saved By the Bell. Spice who? Why yes, Tamagotchi is probably the new sushi restaurant for advanced pop culture teenagers.
It used to make me feel old, but now I just accept it. Besides, I’m on the lucky side of life and tonight proves it. The music is entirely too loud, but I’m not going to phone in a complaint to the police; I’m just going to sit back and sing along to Meat Loaf’s I’d Lie for you (And that’s the truth) because boy oh boy, that’s what I call music!