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Nostalgia for the 2000’s

I don’t think there is much I’d change about being born in the 80’s. Well… maybe I would have preferred to have been born in the late 70’s so I could have experienced the 80’s just a bit more than I did. Nevertheless, I like the time period I was born in, the world was changing and I got a front row seat to see it all. Granted, I’m not happy with what it turned into, but at least I got to see progress.

The one bad thing about being born at the turn of a century is it throws off the way you look at time, at least for me. For example: I struggle to count the decades we’ve already experienced in the 2000’s. The 00s, 10s, and now 20s. I guess, I feel like after 2000 things have just all been in the same decade. Which, in my mind, means the 80’s were only twenty years ago, when it actuality it was forty!

Despite struggling with the concept of time and how it’s progressed, I have found myself becoming more and more nostalgia for the early 2000’s. The movies, music, and TV shows of that era have become more and more prominent in my life over the past year or so and I can’t ignore it anymore.

Just this morning, I found myself with a desire to listen to the soft, indie soundtracks of independent movies of the early 2000’s, stuff like The Garden State soundtrack, The Cary Brothers, Gary Jules and the like. There was something soft, and comforting about this slow semi-depressing music that seems to be lacking in today’s media.

I also find myself feeling nostalgia for the way media was handled. In the early 2000’s things were still transitioning from analog to digital. If you wanted a movie, you’d go browse the store and find it. Video stores still existed, although after I stopped working at one in 2002 I rarely stepped foot in one.

I’ve mentioned it several times over the years, but one of the things I miss the most about buying/renting movies was it felt like a personal experience. Sure, other had rented it before and would rent it after, but for that one night it was my experience. I felt like I was the only person in the world discovering this movie and that made it exciting. There was no reviews to check or IMDB to consult (technically both existed on-line in the early 2000’s) but you just felt so disconnected from everything else. Now, when I stream, I know millions of others have this at their fingertips and might be watching at the same time. I’m dependent on the servers and my wifi to keep everything running and I also know what I watch is being tracked and sold.

There was a certain excitement that existed in finding a movie or CD. I remember driving the forty-five minutes to Best Buy, just so I could pick up the latest 3 Doors Down and Disturb album. Sometimes I’d call my buddy Brady to see if he wanted me to pick him up a copy too such as when I ran across Attack of the Clones for cheap at Toys R Us.

Maybe it’s just the nostalgia speaking, but things felt a bit more positive even then. Is this the way every twenty years look? Is this because things continue to get worse and worse, when we look back twenty years it seems to much better? Or is this due to our memory only focusing on the good and forgetting the bad?

I’m not really sure, but while I’m sure it’ll never rival the nostalgia I feel for the 80’s and 90’s, the early 2000’s weren’t so bad.

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