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June 2, 2001

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raising a glass on his 32nd birthday, tim remembers the 1990s

everything happens faster these days, including nostalgia, so kim threw a 1990s party to celebrate tim's 32nd birthday (but who's counting?). ah, such sweet sweet memories: pentagon-approved footage of the gulf war, the new economy (the web is going to change EVERYthing), oj (not guilty), monika lewinsky (mr. president, that's not an ashtray!), X's Malcolm and Generation, the brief intermission between bush presidencies... but that's all front page stuff that's quickly forgotten. we set up my mac powerbook 145B and asked people to share their 1990's memories, the traumas and absurdities, preserved here for eternity...

i was pool director at a country club on long island. at night we'd float naked on our backs drunk looking up at big bellies of jet aircraft about to land at JFK wondering what they thought of us in nighttime swimming pool blue suspended like grapes in jello.

I lived with my boyfriend who had a mullet hairstyle in an old house by the highway that was supposed to be demolished. They couldn't get a permit to demolish it b/c there was an underground river on the property, but we still got to do anything we wanted with our house. I had a housetrained rabbit named Soft Browne Lou and we took all the doors off the closets and cupboards. We worked out on a Nordik Trak in the basement while listening to the Beastie Boys and Jonathan Richmond and the Modern Lovers, Nirvana and PJ Harvey. We didn't have a T.V. There were 2 cactuses that had been boarded up in one of our windows for years. We finally removed the board and got them out. They were thriving. We watered them and they died. We got a cat we named Thomas Tripp. He was a crazy stray who showed up one day. He would dive bomb our heads at night if we made him be an outdoor cat. He used to sit on top of the large wooden box we had for our boa because the light was so warm. He tried to wrestle with Lou the rabbit so we had to move Lou to a different house for a while. There was a mouse that lived in the house. We named him Sylvester and we fed him and put out water for him. He would stay in the kitchen when we were there after a while.

Staying out overnight for tickets to the Riverdance. It was absolutely incredible. I really thought Michael Flatley's feet were on fire... or perhaps it was his loins....

i was between 20 and 30 year old, and this was a good age for me. i found many ways to enjoy myself.

I lived very many places in the 1990's. They were Chicago, Ann Arbor, Seattle, Denver, Seattle, Syracuse, and Seattle.

Prison is some serious shit. Jail isn't that bad. You see most of the people you know from the street, and some of your friends and stuff. The best meal? Definitely Fridays, Chicken and Biscuits... mmmmmmmmm.

I went on a backpacking trip to Hawaii. I camped at a popular park and went swimming all day long. I wore one dress for several months and had hairy legs. I got Kona coffee shakes. My friend Scott and I hitchhiked every day to get to different beaches. We met a lot of people that way.

The nineties just flew by. I really remember going home during the summers, leaving hot and humid Iowa City behind. I would come home to friends who were just getting out of school for the summer also and would spend most of my days with them. Never even thought about getting my hands dirty and actually work. We would have couple of good oldfashioned Swedish parties during midsummer and the crayfish season at the beginning of August. A few tasty Swedish brewskies along with a steamy sauna... Mmmmm, now that is something..!

drunk, drunk, drunk--so many nights, i thought they'd never end

and they didn't

the end


frozen yogurt & health clubs
or wuz that the 80s somehow
inexplicably they are here to stay
until a Hydrogen bomb
blows them away

just kidding

but, then, there was the world trade center
truckbomb column of smoke taller than either

Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower
Tower   Tower

and a woman i worked with
a few years later told me
she'd lived through it,
down 90 flights of smokedark stairs
only to slip on a patch of ice
once she got outside and 3
newscrews were immediately there
with cameras in her face
asking how she felt...

My mom called me a lot and talked too much. She couldn't help herself. That was just her way.

I talked to my next door neighbor. We established a friendship. He was a massage student and wanted to practice on me. I said yes.

I worked for a start-up game company owned by one of the early Microsoft millionaires. She had two kids and hired me to be their nanny for two weeks because I didn't have that many other projects right then. I taught them how to braid hair and make chocolate banana smoothies. She said I could work at the games company as long as I wanted to but I quit after a while because I got a supervisor who was a personal jerk and would always look at my breasts and micromanage me. The company eventually went out of business.

My parents got back together after being divorced ( and married to other people at times) for over 15 years.

Attending school in New Brunswick, New Jersey between 1993 and 1997, my fellow oarsmen and I would partake in the weekly drunken ritual of bushdiving. We would stalk unsuspecting bushes into the wee hours of Saturday and Sunday mornings and, with flying leaps, pounce upon them. Point were given on height and style.

the most interesting thing about the 90's i have to say seems to be that in remembering it now everyone does a lot of screaming an d yelling about things they probably never ever did in the real 1990s but i guess that's what remembering things is about, you know, remembering all the things you have never ever done and then trying to do them.

The 90's. Sadly, I remember a bit of junior high. A lot of high school. Lots of college. Some dancing, lots of laughing, lots of sex. The nineties were a collaboration of the previous century... the best and the worst of that century. But I think a good time was had by all.

Summer '92, i bought a brand new '93 4-door Saturn, bank approved. One night, drove it home so drunk from my job, leaning on the horn, slaloming across 4 lanes of traffic, 2 on-coming, all of them empty, both of us laughing.

i started dating this boy and then once, this friend of his asked if she could please kiss him. i wanted to punch her in the face which would have been stupid and i wanted him to say, no i'm not interested in kissing you but thanks, which he didn't say. so i said, i think if he wanted to kiss you he would have done so some time ago. and then i left his birthday party.

I got married in 1997 to a man from another country. We had to get a blood test to get married. He said "They took my bloody. I want it back." We lived in a room in a house with a woman. She got mad because my husband dropped sausage and salad on the floor. On our wedding night we went on a trip to the coast (the ocean), he got high on pot and drank a lot and fell asleep. We took a hot tub and watched TV. He said "You are a sexual maniac." because I expressed appreciation for male TV stars. I had doubts about our marriage because he fell asleep without having sex with me because he was too drunk. The next morning I said "Get yourself into the shower." He said, "Yeah, myself is still in the bed."

some of my most beautiful moments in the 1990s were spent at Camp Appalachia for Girls in Covington, Virginia. Sitting on the porch of the counselors' cottage, watching the rain come over the mountains, smoking a cigarette (I learned that if you cup your hands over your ears you could hear the rain coming) - sitting on the bank of the Jackson River. The mountains are soft and green there - a friend said once that if you were a giant you would want to curl up around the Appalachians, rather than pricking your feet on the Rockies.

i was forced to remember that one night that kim brought me into her room and showed me her picture of jeff for the first time. she also told me about saroja then and how yucky it all was with them all and everything. also, i'm supposed to remember about chipo.

i was in a band, smoked a lot of pot, brewed beer, took acid, talked radical leftest politics etc.. etc..

I arrived in Iowa City a hot and humid August afternoon in 1990. The hottest freaking day I had ever experienced! A soon to be friend of ours (I came with another Swede) picked us up at the airport and took us to his place, where we would spend the next few days before the dorms opened. That very same evening, I got my first taste of America and what a taste it was: KFC. Or Kentucky Fried Chicken, as the sign on the strip said. Mmmmmmm... Fried chicken. Never thought you could fry chicken like that. Needless to say, I never went back... Now, ten or eleven years later, my grease tolerance is definitely at a higher level, so maybe I would even like it. Anyway, that day never seemed to end...


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...and that, my friends, was the '90s!

...unless, of course, you would now like to share your 1990's memories: click here