Have you ever had one of those moments of self-reflection where you stop and think, “Gosh, where did the time go?” Life always finds a way to remind us just how old we're getting. It’s crazy to think of how quickly time goes by. One day you're a vibrant teenager who's ready to take on the world. But then 10 years go by, and you find yourself scrolling several decades back to find your birth year. Ugh.
And who could forget about the first time someone called you “sir” or “ma’am”?! Eww. So if you've been feeling old lately, why not take a trip down memory lane and enjoy these nostalgic photos? They won't make you feel younger by any means, but they might trigger some memories that will make you cherish this new era of your life.
Pink Floyd Pride Shirt
This hilarious drawing shows a woman complimenting a guy’s LGBTQ+ shirt, except that the shirt isn’t actually a pride shirt, but actually depicts the logo of one of the most iconic English rock bands from the ‘60s and ‘70s, Pink Floyd. They were considered one of the first British psychedelic groups and you can easily spot the band's logo a mile away... if you were born in the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s, or ‘90s, of course.
Free Minutes After 9
In the ‘90s, cell phone calling and texting plans were... well, let’s just say they were bad. For example, if you wanted to talk with someone, then you had to wait until after 9 at night. That’s an awful long time to wait to gossip with friends on the phone. And texting wasn’t that great either because you were charged 10 cents per text. So you had to make sure that your messages were short and to the point and absolutely worth sending.
Betty White’s Older Than Old
Twitter user @SortaBad tweeted that Betty White was on “The Golden Girls” from 1985 to 1992 long before “most” of his followers were born. Some might even recall that she continued playing the role of Rose Nylund in the spin-off series “Golden Palace” and later played Elka in the sitcom “Hot in Cleveland.” That’s right! This gal loves being an actress and even though she’s nearly 100, she’s proven that she only gets better with age.
This Dad’s Phoning the Past
The guy bridged the gap between the past and the present by plugging an ‘80s handset into his iPhone so he could talk while sitting on his chair in the living room. Of course, his son captured the moment and posted it on Reddit to poke fun at this hilarious boomer moment. But dad was onto something here because handsets are far more comfortable to handle than today’s cell phones. Just ask anyone whose phone screen's got cracked because they weren’t able to hold their phone right and it fell to the ground.
The Stop Sign and the Empty Field
You know you’re old when you’re telling your kids stories about how there used to be no buildings around for miles and the only sign of civilization was a lone stop sign on the side of the road. This realization might hurt like a massive wrecking ball that has just crashed into you. But when you think about it, it’s not really a bad thing at all because at least you get to appreciate how far your town or city has come since you were younger.
This Ancient Alarm Clock
This might surprise a lot of youngsters, but in the not-so-distant past, people had to rely on this electronic gadget to wake them up in the morning for work or school. But in those days, this kind of alarm clock was pretty high tech because it also came with an AM/FM radio as well as a snooze button. Most people these days have forgotten about alarm clocks and simply set up their alarms on their phones.
32 is Old in the World of Sports
They say that your 30s are just part two of your 20s, and for many of us that seems to ring true. But don’t let a sports broadcaster hear you say that or he’ll put you on blast! Twitter user @_troyjohnson tweeted a scenario that anyone who's 35 and older can relate to. It turns out that no matter how young you feel when you’re in your 30s, when you're playing for the NFL or the NBA, you might as well retire at 32. Yikes!
In the Late 1900s...
It’s hard to imagine that the ‘90s are actually part of the last millennium. It seems like it was only yesterday that we were watching the “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers,” listening to Britney Spears’ “Baby One More Time,” and playing the Spice Girls in our discmans. But it took a student to remind this teacher that to them, the 1900s is all ancient history. Still, she should probably give him at least a B on his assignment for writing it this way.
Your Grocery Pickup Order Is a Highlight
Young people are always doing exciting things like traveling, building things, or learning new dances for TikTok. And many of us want to believe that we've still got it going on, but time is a fickle beast and it shows no mercy. You know how to tell if you're getting old? If you get excited over silly little things like your grocery pickup order being ready without any substitutions, or the kitchen counter being clear, then I got news for you.
America’s Funniest Home Videos
“America’s Funniest Home Videos” is a show that features homemade videos submitted by viewers that has something unintentionally funny like someone slipping on a banana peel or dogs doing something silly. The show started in 1989, and surprisingly, ABC renewed it for season 32, even though today, anyone can just hop on YouTube or TikTok and upload their own funniest home videos without having to mail VHS tapes in to a television station.
Texting Wasn’t Always Easy
Texting has gone through a series of evolutions in such a short amount of time. It all started with people having to press the same key several times to get the letter they wanted because each number on their phone represented three different letters. Then cell phones got more sophisticated and incorporated a keyboard that made things a lot easier.
And today, most keyboards are digital on smartphones. It's safe to say that today’s kids will never know how hard it was getting into a fight with someone over text 20 years ago.
The Mystery of the Save Button
In 2019, this Japanese man posted a question on Twitter regarding the “Save” button on Excel. From his perspective, it looked like a vending machine. But kids from the ‘80s and ‘90s all know that this icon represents those 3 ½-inch floppy disks that were once used to save Word and Excel documents. For those who are too young to remember, these floppy disks were the precursor to the USB drives everyone uses today, but with far less storage capacity.
Weekends Started and Ended With Cartoons
Ask any kid and they’ll tell you that one of the main reasons they looked forward to the weekend was the fact that they didn't have to go to school. But back in the 1970’s and 1980’s, kids officially checked into the weekend by watching cartoons like “Looney Tunes” on Saturday morning. Then they officially signed off on Sunday night by watching “The Wonderful World of Disney” with their families. Ahh! Those were the times!
These Two "School of Rock" Kids Are All Grown Up
The 2003 comedy music film “School of Rock,” featured an amateur rock enthusiast named Dewey Finn, who takes over his friend's job by acting like a substitute teacher. But since he’s not qualified, he decides to train the kids to become a band. Well, the two kids in this photo are no longer kids. In fact, they’re all grown-up and dating each other. Who knew that these two were destined to fall in love?
Lisa Kudrow’s Baby Graduated College
It seems like just yesterday that actress Lisa Kudrow and her co-stars graced us with their presence on the show “Friends.” Of course, in those days, Kudrow played the lovable airhead, Phoebe. But the actress was pregnant at one point during the series and producers had to find a way to write it into the show.
But the episodes where Phoebe was pregnant couldn't have been more than 10 years ago, right? Wrong! This before and after photo will make you crunch numbers for a second, because her kid has already graduated college. Where did the time go?
This Was What Aired Late at Night
Remember this? It used to pop up on the TV screen on every channel back in the 1980s whenever the TV station went off the air at night. No late night infomercials or reruns of “I Love Lucy.” This is all that popped up after the last show of the evening aired. But first, they played the National Anthem while showing a waving flag on the screen. Then this off-the-air screen served as a sad reminder to viewers that it was time to go to sleep.
Not Lovin’ It
In today’s world, no one would even dream about lighting up a cigarette at McDonald’s, and if they tried, they would be told by an employee to smoke outside or leave. But that wasn’t always the case. A long, long time ago, McDonald’s had these aluminum ashtrays at their tables so that smokers could hold their cigarettes in place or use it as a receptacle for the ashes. If you remember this, then you’re probably not lovin’ the feeling that you’re old.
The ‘1’ at the Beginning of Your Birth Year
Yup. It might seem like an impossible feat, but did you realize that anyone born in the year 2000 is legally 21 or older? This means that they’re actually old enough to drink in the United States. Of course, they might still get carded when they go to the supermarket to buy alcohol. Unfortunately, Twitter user @sarcasmbully learned the hard way that he doesn’t have to worry about getting carded because his birth year starts with a 1. But being slapped with this ugly truth stung like a bee.
Video Games Worked on Channel 3
If you were an ‘80s kid, then you probably remember having to switch to channel 3 so you could play the Atari or Nintendo game console. There was no other way around it. But generally, the only thing airing on channel 3 when the game console was off was static... lots of it! But as this photo of a Twitter exchange shows, a young person in today’s world would be completely clueless about this historical tidbit.
What Downloading Was Really Like Back Then
Those that have only surfed the web using broadband will never know how much of a headache downloading used to be with dial up internet. This early version allowed people to use their telephone network to connect to an internet service provider like America Online. The only problem was that if you were downloading something and someone in the house picked up the landline, it would interrupt the download process. To make things even worse, dial-up was incredibly slow.
The ‘80s is the New ‘60s
People who were 40-ish, or close to it 20 years ago, knew that 40 years ago was 1960, which seems like a lifetime ago. But Twitter user @oghofer tweeted about how old she felt when someone in 2020 reminded her that 40 years ago was actually 1980. Most of us are still in denial and believe that the '80s and '90s were only 10 or 20 years ago. But it’s a lie we all tell ourselves because living in denial can be total bliss.
Macaulay Culkin Makes Us Feel Old
Macaulay Culkin is the famous actor who played 8-year-old Kevin McAllister in “Home Alone” and “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.” Unfortunately, he only appeared in a few less popular films here and there since then and most recently starred in season 10 of “American Horror Story.” But in 2020, he tweeted that he had turned 40 just to remind his fans that he was no longer a kid, which makes anyone who remembers him from the classic Christmas films feel very old.
These Old-Style Speakers
Computer speakers haven’t changed much over the years, but this design is less familiar to the younger generation. And yet, the concept is still very much the same. They have a light on the front to let the user know if the speakers are on or not and there’s a jack on the front too to plug in your headphones. But there aren’t too many computer speakers today that have those holes that make you want to stick your fingers in them for absolutely no reason.
This Was Once Considered Gaming
Laugh all you want, but a couple of decades ago, this was what computer gaming looked like. It was nothing more than a series of basic games like Solitaire, Minesweeper, and even the classic Windows Paint program. But kids these days would die of boredom if they had to spend more than 5 minutes on these. Especially now that they have online games like League of Legends, Minecraft and Candy Crush.
Doc Brown and Marty McFly, Is That You?
Most kids these days might look at the two men sitting on the right and wonder who the guy with the Santa Claus beard and the other guy in the Misfits shirt is. But a sci-fi enthusiast or someone from the ‘80s and early ‘90s would recognize these men right away. It’s actors Christopher Lloyd and Michael J. Fox, better known as Doc Brown and Marty McFly from the “Back to the Future” trilogy.
Waterful Ring Toss, Anyone?
Handheld game playing on phones and portable game consoles are all the rage, but a couple of decades ago, kids kept themselves entertained with a Waterful Ring Toss. The game was fairly simple, too. All you had to do was press a button that shot out a jet of water. This sent a series of blue, yellow, green, and red rings floating up in the water. But the goal was to get those rings to slide on to two plastic sticks.
You Still Know How to Use a Disposable Camera
Disposable cameras were designed to be used once and were available at stores like CVS Pharmacy, Eckerd's, or Walgreens. Some even had an integrated flash or were waterproof. The film was incorporated into the camera, so once all the photos were taken, you took the camera to the store’s photo center and had them develop it.
The camera was then disposed of. But today, everyone uses digital cameras or the camera on their phones. But this Twitter user had an interesting encounter with two girls who seemed to think that she didn’t know how to use one. Ha! The joke’s on them.
Blockbuster Cards Are the New ID
Once upon a time there was a store called Blockbuster where people rented movies on VHS and eventually, even DVDs. And Blockbuster cards were a lot like library cards in that they were easy to get but you couldn’t check anything out of the store without one. Unfortunately, the only remaining Blockbuster is in Bend, Oregon. And thanks to Dish Network and streaming services, most young people barely even know what Blockbuster was.
This Multicolored Pen
These days, kids only want the latest Smartphone to play with while they’re in school. But only someone who’s really old can appreciate just how entertaining it was to own one of these 4-in-1 retractable ballpoint pens. Sometimes they came with an incredible array of colors. A lot of kids in the '80s and '90s spent their time clicking in and out of those retractable colors because blue and black ink was just lame.
Everyone Wanted This Stereo
Vinyl disc player on top, cassette player in the middle and a whole lot of levers and knobs to crank up the music! This was what ‘youngins’ used to listen to music and enjoy hours of entertainment back in the day. But today’s youth has the power to listen to just about anything they want on their Smartphones. And they don’t have to worry about carrying around cassettes or vinyl discs since music is now digitally downloadable.
Scrolling to the Year You Were Born
Anyone who has seen “The Price is Right” is familiar with the big wheel that contestants must spin for a chance to participate in the game show’s showcase showdown. But it’s not the show that will make you feel old. It’s the similarity between spinning the wheel and scrolling to the year you were born when you’re online that will remind you that you’re no longer a kid. Then again, age is just a number and you’re only as old as you feel.
Most kids these days don’t realize how lucky they are to have streaming services like Netflix that allow them to pause their favorite show while they go make themselves a bowl of popcorn or a snack platter. Back in the day, when a show was airing, you had about 2 minutes of commercials to do whatever you needed to do and get back to the living room or you’d miss precious seconds or perhaps minutes of your favorite show. And no! Pausing was in-pause-ible.
It’s a Muppet Show
Although “The Muppets” have continued to captivate and entertain kids over the years, only someone who is older will feel nostalgic over this image of a series of old favorites like Kermit and Ms. Piggy. Oddly enough they look like they’re doing a Zoom call, which is impossible because Zoom didn’t exist back in the day. But like most people on the popular app, the Muppets probably aren't wearing any pants.
Overhead Projectors and VCRs, Oh My!
Remember when the teacher used to bring this out? It’s an overhead projector that uses light to project an enlarged image on a screen, allowing students to view small documents or pictures. Teachers would also write on the surface of the screen to show students how to do math equations and things like that. But sometimes, teachers popped an educational video into the VCR and let the television take over for 30 minutes.
You’re Alone Like the Grinch and Loving It
The Grinch was a green-colored creature who lived in virtual solitude on the outskirts of Whoville. The “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” character also despised people almost as much as he despised Christmas until he had an epiphany at the end of the story. But this image reminds us that there’s a Grinch in all of us because even though we like Christmas, we often prefer solitude over company as we get older.
Study 80s/90s Pop Culture
No one likes a brown noser in school, but in this case, it wouldn’t hurt to catch up on some ‘80s/’90s pop culture. This includes movies and shows of that era, according to Twitter user @dmimno. College professors will be pretty upset if they see you don’t get what they’re talking about when they make pop culture references from these time periods. It wouldn’t hurt to know who Michelle Pfeiffer, Sharon Stone and Cher are, either.
The Internet Button Cost You Money
Only someone who chronically pressed the internet button on their flip phone by mistake could appreciate what Twitter user @hayleyghoover tweeted alongside this photo. It might not seem like a big deal but in those days, cell phone users had anxiety about accidentally activating this feature on their phone because it ended up costing them money they didn’t have. Some went as far as opening the casing in the back and removing the battery to shut down the connection.
Young People Don’t Know What a Game Boy Is
Even though he hadn’t been a kid in a very long time, this guy thought he was totally cool because he had a Nintendo Game Boy, and not just any Game Boy but a Game Boy Color. This version of the popular handheld device had a few extra colors that the previous black and white version lacked. But since most kids today play highly sophisticated games on their phones, this Game Boy seemed like unknown tech to them.
What Are These?
Anyone from the ‘80s and ‘90s would recognize these as game cartridges. In fact, the ones on the left are for the Nintendo 64 while the ones on the right are for the original Nintendo game system. But Twitter user @dianaYe_ felt ancient when her daughter didn’t know what they were. This is just another example of how fast gaming technology has advanced and how much time has passed since kids played these games.
What’s an iPod?
An iPod? Did you mean an iPad? One of those touchscreen tablets made by Apple that have 4G capabilities and Wi-Fi connectivity? Uh, no. This is an iPod, a tiny device that allowed people to listen to music. It was pocket-sized and capable of holding lots of digital music. Essentially, it was an MP3 player. But that doesn’t mean diddly squat to some younger folks because they’ve got their music stored on their phones.
These Goosebumps Books Were Released in the ‘90s
The Goosebumps book series provided countless hours of scary tales for kids who were into that sort of stuff. In fact, they were so popular that the books spawned a TV show that ran from 1995 until 1998. This eventually led to the 2015 horror comedy film of the same name and its subsequent sequel in 2018, “Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween.” But the titles in this photo were released between 1992 and 1995, and if you have the series on VHS, then you’ve reached mummy status in the eyes of kids today.
Aaliyah Died 20 Years Ago
Aaliyah was an American singer, dancer and model who helped redefine contemporary R&B, pop, and hip hop. This earned her the nicknames “Queen of Urban Pop” and “Princess of R&B.” But she was also an actress. In fact, she appeared in the horror film “Queen of the Damned” in 2002, where she played the vampire queen Akasha. Sadly, the singer died in a plane crash on August 25, 2001, shortly after the plane took off from the Bahamas.
Haley Joel Osment is a Grown Man
The younger generation may not remember this, but Haley Joel Osment won audiences over with his portrayal of Forrest Gump Jr., in the 1994 film “Forrest Gump.” Then he appeared alongside Bruce Willis in the horror film “The Sixth Sense” in 1999. But fans of both of these films would prefer to think of the actor as some innocent little kid. However, whenever Osment makes an appearance in films, television or interviews today, we can't help but realize that we're getting really old, and we do mean O-L-D.
The PlayStation 2 is 21 Years Old
The PlayStation 2 (PS2) was a video game console that was released in 2000 and was the immediate successor to the PlayStation. Over the years, the PS2 brought entertainment to lots of households before it was officially discontinued in 2013. However, some people continue to own and play on one, despite the fact that it was succeeded by the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5. But generally speaking, kids would opt for the latest game console.
The Wii is 15 Years Old
The Nintendo Wii is an electronic game console that was released in 2006, and what set it apart from previous Nintendo game consoles were the wireless remote controllers that attached to a joystick and other input devices. It was intended to help kids and kids at heart become more active while playing video games.
Unfortunately, the Wii was officially discontinued in October 2013 but continued to offer services all the way up to 2019. But the only Nintendo system that kids are familiar with today is the Nintendo Switch.
What are Neopets?
Back in 1999, Neopets became everyone’s favorite pets, but users didn’t have to go to an actual pet store to purchase one. They were taken care of on a website that owners could visit to buy virtual items using virtual currency like Neopoints and Neocash. The difference between the two currencies was that Neopoints could be earned on the website while Neocash was bought using real money. But as is evident from this online exchange, kids have no clue what Neopets are today.
Who Was Steve Irwin?
Steve Irwin was an Australian zookeeper and wildlife expert known as “The Crocodile Hunter.” As a kid, his father Bob taught him all there was to know about reptiles, which fueled his fascination for animals. Sadly, the reason why some kids don’t really know who he is these days is because he passed away tragically in 2006 after being pierced by a stingray while filming a documentary in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
Every adult in the United States remembers the horrible day when the Twin Towers fell in New York City, resulting in the loss of thousands of people's lives on September 11, 2001. But any kid who was born after this date has no idea what the Twin Towers were until they learn about it in school. And the only way they’ll see them is in photos or in some old movie or show because the only building they may be familiar with is the Freedom Tower, which succeeded the original towers.
They Don’t Know What a Discman Is
In the late ‘90s and early ‘2000s, Discman CD players were all the rage because they allowed people to listen to their CDs while they were on the go. Unfortunately, there were a couple of hiccups with the technology. For example, the CD would sometimes skip a beat if it got bumped or if the person holding it shook it by accident.
Eventually, the makers created anti-slip technology for a smoother music playing experience. But kids today will never know how easy they have it listening to digital music on their phones.
Kids Think VHS Tapes are DVDs
VHS tapes are to kids these days what 8-tracks were to most kids back in the ‘80s and ‘90s. But generally speaking, a lot of kids don’t know what this is or they assume that a VHS tape is a DVD because they can’t imagine anything before that. Oddly enough, DVDs are slowly becoming a thing of the past now that everyone is relying on streaming services or downloading digital copies of movies or programs through platforms like Amazon.