Kids that grew up in the '90s know all about the nostalgia such an eclectic decade has provided. From hearing your favorite Spice Girls song on the radio to opening your velcro Trapper Keeper to the noise the toaster made when your Eggo waffle was ready, there are so many sounds that can give '90s kids all the feels.
It's kind of strange to think that my kids will never know the struggle that is having to rewind a video tape or patching a hole in your favorite inflatable chair or getting the glitter in your glitter eyeshadow to actually show up on your skin. I mean, I can't tell you how much time I spent trying to emulate one of the "cool girls" that were inside the pages of a Limited Too catalog. They didn't have to witness Jen Ledley's death on Dawson's Creek or make the daunting decision of declaring their loyalty to either N'SYNC or The Backstreet Boys (because, no, you couldn't love both). Honestly, my kids are so damn lucky.
The only reason kids today even know who Kimmy Gibbler is is because of all of the Full House references in Fuller House, and they'll never know the anxiety of returning a video in late to the video store because they can binge watch Netflix to their heart's content. While kids growing up today might have more toys and technology than we did in the '90s, there's no denying the awesome 90s nostalgia that they're missing out on.
I say let them have their wifi and their auto-tuning; I'll just be over here, listening to Britney Spears on cassette tape while eating a Hot Pocket and remembering all the other amazing sounds of the 90s.
"Hit Me Baby One More Time"
No one ever looked at school girl uniforms the same after Britney Spears burst on the scene in 1998 with her chart-topping hit, "Hit Me Baby One More Time." Every girl instantly idolized Spears and every guy fell head over heels in love. We knew her songs by heart; we mimicked her dance moves; we sang into our hair brushes just dreaming of being even half as cool as Britney Spears was. Of course, all of this was long before the infamous head-shaving and umbrella incident, which made her downfall that much harder for us to watch. Thankfully though, Spears eventually reclaimed her crown as the princess of pop (but if we're being honest, we miss her pig tails).
The Music Of The Ice Cream Truck
Nothing made a '90s kid more excited than hearing the ice cream truck driving through their neighborhood on a hot summer day. At first the music was barely detectable (it felt like a tease or a mirage) but once it got closer, the music got louder and when we realized that, yes, it was the ice cream truck on its way to deliver the sugary sweetness of a Push-Pop.
Your Tamagotchi Making You Feel Like A Failure
Before mom shaming was a thing, there was Tamagotchi shaming. Nothing made you feel more like a failure than when one of your friends was bragging about how much her Tamagotchi was growing, and yours wasn't getting enough to eat or was giving you a hard time or was, you know, dead. If Tamagotchis were any real indication of how any of us would actually parent, we would have seen a drastic decrease in our population by now.
The Sound AOL Made When Someone Messaged You
Remember the many sounds of AOL? The one it made when it connected; the one it made when someone messaged you; the one it made when you signed off? How many hours did '90s kids log in chat rooms on AOL late at night when our parents thought we were sleeping? (Honestly, don't answer that. Those are hours of our lives we'll never get back.)
Nothing made a '90s kid's heart skip a beat more than when their crush signed onto AOL messenger. We might not have had text messages or Snap Chat, but we did have super cool screen names and font styles.
The Sound Of The Dial-Up Internet After It Finally Connected
The sound of dial up internet was a combination of the sound the TV would make when you ran out of channels, the evil spirit from the Poltergeist, a few random boings, and a dying bird. Still, it made every '90s kid jump with joy once it finally connected. If you had a bad connection though, your day was pretty much ruined.
"Mmm bop. Dippy dot dot doo whop. Dooey dop my dew wop, dippy dot dot dooo. Hey ye-ah." Or something like that, right? Who didn't have a crush on one of the Hanson brothers during their prime? Everyone had a favorite (Taylor, obviously), but one thing we all agreed on was that "Mmm Bop" was our favorite song, even though we had absolutely no idea what it was about.
The Sound The Little Blurbs In "Pop Up Videos" Made
Remember when VH1 Pop Up Videos would come on in the morning, and if you slept in too late you'd be super mad because you missed out on learning lots of random facts about your favorite artists and videos? Those little blurbs made the best sound, and they gifted us with what felt like getting to know our favorite singers on a personal level. (If you didn't know the real story behind "The Boy Is Mine" than you had no business even singing it.)
Pop Rocks Popping
Not sure how these things even came about, as they definitely seem like an experiment gone awry. We didn't care that Pop Rocks had zero nutritional value and some seriously questionable ingredients; we were just obsessed with the sound they made when we put them in our mouth. And if we wanted really wanted to look cool in front of our friends, we'd take a daring swig of Coke after filling our mouth full of those tiny candy grenades because that would definitely solidify a '90s kid's status as a dare devil. Because nothing says "I'm a rebel" quite like eating candy and drinking coke, right?
"Don't Go Chasing Water Falls"
"Please stick to the rivers and the lakes that you used to." Who remembers the video to this song? Admit it, you probably weren't mature enough to actually understand the meaning behind this song, but that didn't keep you from singing it with deep conviction at the top of your lungs every time you heard it on the radio though.
As it turns out, this song had a deep and important message behind it. TLC was big on AIDS awareness, and this song had a few lines that references that passion. (Left-Eye often wore a condom attached to her clothes to promote safe sex.) So, even though you probably weren't having sex in elementary school o middle school or even high school, you were promoting safe sex every time you sang it. Good for you, you little sex-positive activist, you.
The Many Melodies Of The Mario, As Heard From Your Nintendo
Who could ever forget the intro into the Mario Brothers games? Or the sound of catching those coins? Or the twinge of defeat that the sound of Mario falling into a bottomless canyon made? If you grew up in the '90s, you probably played this game for hours and hours, until your thumbs would lock up or you would get to the last level and accidentally die. Then, you'd eat a Hot Pocket to regroup before you were back at it again.