Revisiting your youth is hilariously fun as a 40 year old

Forget Mexico or opening up the cottage for spring break. Mine was a blast from the past.

I haven’t lived with my parents for over 15 years but every few months my mom finds something of mine to get rid of (read as “take this to your house even though you don’t want it/need it/remember it exists”).

This time, the mystery box included my old VCR, VHS tapes and my camcorder. I decided we would make it a retro weekend.

We used no modern technology — smartphones were off, no high-speed internet. The main TV in our living room is 15 years old so that got a pass. It took a while to figure out how to plug in those red-white-yellow cables from an old camcorder and VCR into a newer TV but we eventually got it. (These things seemed easier to figure out back then, didn’t they?) We went back to 1999 when I was 17 years old.

Everything that we did and consumed was from my childhood. We watched the goofy nighttime-shot horror movie my friends and I made at the lake called the Blair Bitch Project (our take on the Blair Witch Project movie at the time) as we ate my childhood favourites: McDonald’s fries, and a nod to my summer birthday with a McCain Deep’n Delicious cake. (I was a kid, give me a break.)

My drink as a teen (gasp- underage drinking) was vodka and OJ. My husband found some Brazilian booze from his homeland at the liquor store. We got some candy (Ring Pops and Fun Dip — remember them?) and became kids again.

Later, we pulled out a boombox I won in a radio contest 20 years ago and went to the CD rack (yup, still have one) in my office and found my old Backstreet Boys and Spice Girls and Matchbox 20 and Savage Garden CDs and went downstairs to the rec room where we had flashlights and glow sticks and danced with the dogs all night.

The next day, we put in random VHS tapes to reveal old episodes of The Jerry Springer Show and The Ricki Lake Show that I’d taped in high school. What’s even more fascinating is fast forward (no pun intended) to present day and I actually know those talk show hosts because they’ve been on the radio with me.

We hit pause because I’m going to Florida this week for work, but our next retro flashback will be about the Brazilian culture and what it was like for a kid growing up in 1999. I’m all for it. I don’t think we learn enough as adults so I’m excited.

For three days we were in a bubble, reliving our (mostly my) carefree youth. And I have to say, it was the most fun I’d had in years. This wasn’t just “unplugging” from devices for a weekend, this was as close to time travel as we could get.

Am I too young to make a “good old days” comment or is 40 an acceptable threshold?

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