Before there were text messages and emojis, there were carefully crafted secret notes. In the '90s, if you had something urgent or funny or even completely unnecessary to say to your BFF, you had to pass them a note and hope that you didn't get caught. Kids today will never understand the struggle that was trying to pass a note across an entire classroom without the teacher knowing, but they're also missing out on all the awesome notes we passed our friends in the '90s.
Cools girls in the '90s versus the cool girls of today couldn't be more different. Though they share the same high waisted jeans and flannel shirts, their social lives and worldly concerns vary greatly. The things '90s cool girls did on the weekends included trips to the mall and hanging out in food courts, but cool girls today, well, I'm honestly not sure what they do but I'm positive it's not hanging out at Panda Express or inside a Claire's, which is unfortunate because Claire's had some seriously amazing sales on some of their friendship necklaces and karma beads (that, yes, I still have in a box somewhere because hello nostalgia).
One of the many differences between '90s girls and girls of today is the way in which they communicate. As a '90s girl, I was excited to try out my new (and come to think of it, expensive) glitter pens, but now we have emojis to communicate our otherwise complicated feelings. While texting is super quick and easy, and yes, I have ditched the glitter pens and become an avid texting machine, I still miss the rush I got when my BFF passed me a note in class, because it took time and effort to get it folded just right and she probably alternated pen colors per line and it was always signed in some ridiculously intricate way that let me know she loved me.
Notes in the '90s were written with glitter and love and an undeniable amount of devotion, so kids today can keep their effortless emojis. I'd rather be on the receiving end of one of the following nine crisply folded notes from my BFF any day.
When you signed a note with "LYLAS" at the end of it, you were definitely writing to your BFF, because you didn't tell just any old friend, "love ya like a sister." LYLAS was the ultimate label for BFFs, and earning such a title was serious business in the '90s.
'90s girls were communicating via acronyms way before they were used in text messages. Labeling a note with "TTYL" meant that you had other business to discuss, but it was sensitive so you couldn't write about it in your note. Though "TTYL" was code for "talk to you later," it basically meant, "meet me in a super secret spot so I can tell you the dirt."
These notes usually contained classified information about crushes. Today, people just update their relationship status, but in the '90s, if a relationship was, in fact, "complicated," a note was passed with the details as to why said relationship wasn't as seamless as it was in the movies. '90s girls didn't spew their life issues across Facebook in cryptic statuses (well, we didn't even have the opportunity, thankfully); we kept it locked down safely inside a paper note labeled "top secret," like the cool girls we were.
Something In Bubble Letters
Before emojis were a thing, bubble letters were the go-to creative way to express your angsty teenage self. I was so jealous of my left handed friend, who started all of her notes by writing the recipient's name at the top of the paper in the best bubble letters I've ever seen. You know someone really cares about you and values your friendship when they take the time to get their bubble letters just right.
Something In Glitter
If you were one of the "cool girls," your pencil patch (located inside your trapper keeper) was filled with an assortment of glitter pens. Those notes were always the prettiest, and using glitter pens was an obvious indication of social importance.
A Note Folded Into A Tiny Triangle
If you folded a note into a tiny triangle, you were trying to be discrete. Folding notes into old fashioned squares or rectangles presented security issues. They were easier for teachers to spot, and if they were dropped in the floor, they might have opened up just enough for someone to read part of them. All serious note passers perfected the triangle fold and tuck, and not using said fold meant that you were a rookie and probably couldn't be trusted to get a note across an entire classroom.
The "Did You Hear About..." Note
Rumors didn't just spread through the lunch room, they spread through notes during class, too. If you had some good dirt, you passed your BFF a note (folded into a triangle, of course) to lay out your investigative plans and detective-like ambitions. Those notes were basically the tabloids of junior high.
The Note That Was More Than One Page Long (AKA Basically A Diary)
Getting a note that was more than one page usually wasn't a good thing. Most often, it meant that someone was either very angry with you, or were very upset about something else going on in their life. Either way, receiving a note that was too big to be folded into a triangle, and that definitely gave the writer a hand cramp, meant that there was something serious written inside.
The TGIF notes were the '90s cool girl's equivalent of, "it's 5 o'clock somewhere." TGIF meant that you were so over the stressful week you spent putting up with your strict parents and dealing with the mean teachers that clearly had it out for you. Those notes meant that you were ready to kick back and watch Sabrina The Teenage Witch and Boy Meets World while you stuffed your face full of popcorn. Basically, it was a '90s cool girl way of saying, "let's party."
We might not pass these notes anymore, but I think it's safe to say that all girls, '90s or not, can relate to the concept of TGIF. So, is it Friday yet?