By Sarah Carlson-McNally
As the end of the Spring 2018 semester comes to a close here at St. Michael’s College, students are rushing about campus to finish papers, projects, and exams. The clock keeps ticking, and amidst all the hustle and bustle from study time to memory-making with friends, students look back on simpler times.
Ten years ago, just as puberty started to hit, we were all a little confused. But reminiscing on the silly stresses of middle school crushes and gross school lunches puts a college student’s headache at ease.
Ten years ago, our summers were filled with water parks, rocket popsicles, and play dates with friends. School was a daily routine from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. filled with mystery lunches, gym class heroes, and worst of all, puberty. At 12 years old, we were more worried about who was holding hands with who during lunch than we were about growing up and getting a job.
“We were just dumb little fifth graders who had crushes on people and called it dating,” Pam Lovely ’20 said. “There was one girl who asked us what a virgin was in school and we didn’t know what it meant, but we thought it was a bad word.”
The drama we face in our early 20s is much different than the drama of middle school. Looking back to the tattle tailing drama, like the time I told my teacher a classmate said the word “sex” in context with “Sex and the City,” can put our stresses in perspective.
Emily Boisvert ’20, looks back to those embarrassing moments when we misused bad words. “I used to think the middle finger meant cherry,” she giggled.
Romance isn’t the only thing that’s evolved in ten years. Style has changed drastically, and hopefully, for the better. “For Easter we would always get pastel, plaid Bermuda shorts, like the pink and green ones,” Dyanna Martin, ’20 said. “Shorts with leggings was a big trend too.”
“In the black and Hispanic communities, boys always had the same haircut: a super short cut with a low fade, or a shaved head with a patch of hair in the back,” Diego Calderon ’20 laughed. But things weren’t all bad, silly as they may be looking back, some trends are classic. “Drake dropped his album that year, and ‘6 foot 7 foot’ by Lil Wayne was out,” Diego said. Just as Drake’s music gets better and better, so does our technology. Not only have the silly ideas and trends of 2008 changed, but our society has evolved tremendously.
For lots of students, smartphones are a norm. But ten years ago many of us remember what middle schoolers today might call “old school” technology. “In 2008 we didn’t have smartphones back in China,” Zichen Qian ’21 said. “No one on the street walking and staring down at their phone.” While it’s hard to imagine our society today without smartphone technology, there is a nostalgic longing for simpler times.
“I miss memorizing a bunch of people’s phone numbers, you’d have to call friend’s home phone number at the right time to get in touch with them,” Addie Drinkwater ’18, shared. Programs such as Spotify and Pandora, even Netflix, allow for a more diverse media selection, but can also create a divide in social settings.
“Everyone used to watch the same TV shows. When you’re in a group of people and a throwback song comes on, everyone knows the lyrics,” Julianna Carvalho ’18 said. While change can be good, looking back on what seems to be a simpler time can be nostalgic amongst the constant rush of our current society.