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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Time Marches On.

You know, I’m getting old. This isn’t a complaint, exactly, especially considering the alternative, but it’s still true. I’m in my 30s, which is actually a good age to be. Old enough to know better, but not so old you really have to care.

Still, every now and then something crops up to remind me that I’m no spring chicken anymore.

Like movies, for example. One of my favorite comedies of recent vintage is Knocked Up. The plot is about a stoner loser who lucks into a one-night-stand with an E! network anchor that results in a baby. They try to make a go of it, and the differences between their personalities make watching them do so amusing.

Incidentally, the previous sentence is a prime example of how a Vulcan would describe a sitcom.

Anyway, in the movie there is a scene where the pregnant woman and her stoner baby-daddy are at a restaurant with her sister and brother-in-law. The stoner baby-daddy makes a reference to Doc Brown and his time machine. The pregnant woman responds that she has no idea who Doc Brown is.

I remarked to my wife, snickering, “OMG. She hasn’t seen Back to the Future? LOLZ!”

Because I often speak L33T to my wife. When you have kids, you learn to communicate quickly and efficiently.

My wife then pointed out to me that the actress on screen (Katherine Heigel, incidentally) was in her early 20s, which means she was probably born in 1989, which was four years after Back to the Future was released to theatres.

To say I was nonplussed would be untrue, as profanity still counts as speech. A cultural keystone from my formative years is not only irrelevant, but unknown to today’s college students.

It’s not like I should be surprised at this, however. It’s not like it’s the first time such a thing has happened. A few years back Dear Old Dad mentioned to me that one of his high school students didn’t know what The A-Team was.

That, dear readers, just makes me want to cry. It’s bad enough to live in a world without George Peppard in it, but to see what is; in my opinion; one of the finest examples of television forgotten is just heartbreaking. The A-Team was such a big part of my youth that to ask “What’s the A-Team” is akin to asking “What’s air?”

But enough maudlin self indulgence. Let’s get to the point. And the point is this: A list of awesome things that today’s high school graduates are too young to know about.

1) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember Back to the Future.
2) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember Captain Kangaroo
3) Today’s High School Graduates have never lived in a world with Jim Henson in it. (If that’s not depressing, I don’t know what is)
4) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember The A-Team
5) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember when Will Smith was a rapper.
6) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to know what “STOP! HAMMERTIME!” means.
7) Today’s High School Graduates have likely never seen an Atari 2600, 5200 or 7800.
8) Today’s High School Graduates have never seen Mr. Wizard on TV.
9) Today’s High School Graduates have always had internet access. True, it was AOL, but I’m pretty sure that still counts.
10) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember a world before Half Life changed the FPS genre forever.
11) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember a world before Doom made the FPS genre exist.
12) Today’s High School Graduates have never lived in a world without a Final Fantasy game.
13) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember video arcades, or at least video arcades before the days of Dance Dance Revolution and fourteen billion ways to play rigged games for tickets.
14) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember Quantum Leap.
15) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember AutoMan.
16) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember Tron, or understand why it’s relevant to video games in any way.
17) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to know Tom Selleck, Burt Reynolds, or any other actors who existed before the mustache became a registered trademark of homosexuality.
18) Today’s High School Graduates probably saw The Phantom Menace before they saw A New Hope. And if they did, their parents should be brought up on charges of abuse.
19) Today’s High School Graduates have never lived in a world where Klingons were the bad guys.
20) Today’s High School Graduates have never seen Pac-Man outside of a cell phone or retro game compilation. And they’ve never heard the song “Pac Man Fever” either.
21) Today’s High School Graduates have always had Super Mario games.
22) Today’s High School Graduates have always had Metroid games.
23) Today’s High School Graduates have always had Zelda games.
24) Today’s High School Graduates have always had Mega Man games.
25) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to know why it’s clever that Lou Ferrigno was in both of the Incredible Hulk movies to come out in the 21st century.
26) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember back when Dr. Horrible was Dr. Houser.
27) Today’s High School Graduates have never had to inflate a sneaker.
28) Today’s High School Graduates think Elmo has always been on Sesame Street.
29) Today’s High School Graduates think the Strawberry Shortcake cartoon is new.
30) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember a time before Pokemon.
31) Today’s High School Graduates have always had cell phones that fit in your pocket.
32) Today’s High School Graduates are too young to remember a time before DVDs.
33) Today’s High School Graduates have probably never played Wing Commander.
34) Today’s High School Graduates have never been exposed to the horrors of Laserdisc video games.
35) Today’s High School Graduates have never known a time when MTV played music videos (Hey-oh!)
36) Today’s High School Graduates think Rick Astley wrote that song for the internet meme.
37) Today’s High School Graduates think They Might Be Giants are children’s artists.

And there you have it. Does that make you feel old? Well, I’ve got news for you: You’re even older now.

And now you’re even older.

And now you’re older still.