Friday, March 26, 2010

'Perfect' Timing

My favorite feature at the AV Club is Q & A, where a reader throws out a question and the entire AV Club staff takes turns answering it. This week's Q & A discusses pop culture that makes us feel old. The timing is either unfortunate or fortuitous, because I turn 30 tomorrow, and, well, let's just say this topic has been on my mind quite a bit lately, though nothing has made me feel quite as old as a bunch of my favorite writers talking about what makes them feel old.

The first time pop culture really made me feel old was about five years ago, when I realized that one of my law school classmates had watched an entirely different generation of children's cartoons growing up. I grew up on The Muppet Show, the Charlie Brown holiday specials, G.I. Joe and He-Man, and girls my age grew up with My Little Pony and Jem and the Holograms. My classmate, who was only three years younger than me, grew up after the networks had stopped airing the Muppets and Charlie Brown, and had grown up with Duck Tales, Chip and Dale - Rescue Rangers, and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Not only that, she actually didn't recognize my friends' bitchin' Jem and the Holograms costumes at a Halloween party. I was amazed that somebody old enough to be in law school was too young to know Jem and the Holograms. That was five years ago, and things have not improved in the meantime.

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