I guess I'm living in 1992. I did notice that I've been revisiting Green Day and Nirvana a bit lately, but I didn't realize that I'd never left the Nineties to begin with. Using the New Yorker description of that year as my guide, let me count the ways:
- I can easily think of what BoyzIIMen sound like. No idea what Maroon 5 is--does it have anything to do with the paper I write for?
- I don't have, and have never tried to use, TiVo.
- Same goes for the iPod.
- I don't use Botox (and no, its use is not unheard of among girls my age).
- Nor do I text-message.
- I have, however, passed handwritten notes in the not-so-distant past.
- I eat pasta (i.e. "carbs") most nights of the week.
The New Yorker's definition of what's "2005" from the perspective of a fictitious rich 8th-grader says more about rich 8th-graders than it does about 2005 versus 1992. In the NYC private school world, time moves very, very quickly, and if you don't have the right stuff (be it the latest high-tech gadget if you're a kid, or, if you're a parent, the latest cosmetic procedure) then you're either poor or, god forbid, eccentric.
I'd imagine that most Americans, especially New Yorkers, if asked what makes 2005 different from 1992, would say "2001." At least, that's what I'd say. I'm reminded of the socialite-y woman I noticed, on the morning of September 11th, absentmindedly walking the lap dog while hordes of workers--businesspeople, office workers, everyone--headed north through the sidewalk, the street... While I understand the New Yorker piece to be intended as a cutesy, playful mocking of a trend-obsessed kid, for whom only today's bands are worth knowing, it says a whole lot more about how easily people forget. I mean, an 8th grader today might not remember the attacks, but you'd think his parents might mention it from time to time. The end of the piece, in which the kid exclaims, "I’m so grateful to live in 2005!" made me shudder.