I've got to say, this has been a lot of fun. I love writing Children of the 90s, but I don't get a lot of opportunities to interact with readers. You all came up with some great questions, many of which had me pacing and deliberating over responses. I mean, really, how does one choose between JTT and Devon Sawa? It's a dilemma that might exceed the reach of even my 90s imagination. A quandry for the ages.
I powered through the tough ones, though, to answer all your burning questions. Well, maybe burning isn't the right word. If it applies to anything you asked, I'd recommend your question sees a doctor immediately. Anyway, if anyone else has any questions or suggestions for posts, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks everyone for your great questions and kind comments and I'm looking forward to bringing you plenty more nostalgic pop culture entertainment in the coming months. I'm also scouting for some exciting giveaway prizes, so keep your eyes out for some forthcoming 90s swag.
Without further ado, your answers:
Shannon asks, "Do you have any nostalgic collections?"
I used to, which I guess would mean that collections themselves were not nostalgic at the time but rather that I'm nostalgic for them now. I used to collect troll dolls. I had a pretty massive collection, but I imagine most of them have gone the way of the yard sale or the Goodwill collection. I'm still kicking myself for not saving my well-maintained pog collection. I'm not sure what I'd use them for now, but I do sort of miss them.
Now that I think about it, I do have one small collection that pays homage to my childhood: my much-glorified Golden Girls DVDs. Yep, I've got Seasons 1-7, and I watch it everyday while I get ready for work. Mock me if you must, but that show will never lose its timeless hilarity. Even the dated 80s and 90s pop culture reference jokes make me laugh.
Melissa Blake asks, "Nsync or BSB?"
Cee asks, "What made you want to blog about 90s stuff? Did you have a blog before? Basically, how was this fab blog "born"?"
Good question. Sometimes it makes me laugh when people email me asking if I sell Puppy Surprises or if I know the obscure name of their local rural children's radio DJ 20 years back. I have a confession to make...I don't know anything special about the 90s. Well, actually that's not true. I do now, after churning out daily posts for the last 250 days, but when I started I was just trying out a niche topic.
It actually all started with my boyfriend, so I suppose you can thank him or blame him depending on how much valuable time you've lost to the site. I'd been talking to him about how I loved to write, and I'd love to get in a practice of writing daily so I could eventually write a book. By eventually I meant in 20 years, but he's far less patient (read: less lazy) than me. He convinced me to start something up. I didn't have a blog before, actually. I didn't want to make it personal because I was afraid of being blog-outed at work. Of course, a lot of personal anecdotes started slipping in; I couldn't keep it totally objective. If I wanted to write anything funny, I realized I'd probably have to lay myself down on the altar of shame and sacrifice blackmail-worthy past humiliations for the greater good of 90s entertainment.
I'd spent hours on sites like Cakewrecks and Stuff White People Like, so I started thinking of something I could write about daily with the goal of sticking to about 1000 words or more. Obviously I had no idea what I was getting into, but I'm really enjoying the experience nonetheless!
Tara asks, "Does it ever get hard to think of something 90's to blog about? Do you think a time will come when you'll just run out?"
I'd have to say yes and maybe. To the first question, it definitely is tougher than I thought. When I started, I had infinite possibilities, which of course I squandered on my then reader-less blog. I actually put together a sort of "master list" of ideas. I managed to come up with about 300, which is clearly insane and represents the inordinate amount of downtime I have at the office. I actually participated in a Google Blogger study, and I was a little embarrassed when they asked to see this master list through screen-sharing. Even over the phone, I'm pretty sure they were judging me.
That said, I didn't realize going into this what a major commitment it is to write so much each day. Also, my childhood was definitely not the same as everyone else's, so it gets more difficult to think of topics to which significant proportion of 20-somethings could relate. I've learned to save websites that interest me, pick up a book or two at used book stores, and to generally keep my eyes out for anything I think might be funny and/or memorable.
Andy asks, "Of all the SNICK shows, which was your favorite and why?
That's a tough one. I'd love to act cool and say Are You Afraid of the Dark? but really I was a huge wimp as a kid. It totally gave me nightmares. I still think sometimes about that weird red swamp thing that lived in the pool...*shudder*. I'd have to say my favorite was The Secret World of Alex Mack. I would've given anything to hang out with Larissa Oleynik and see how they made her turn into a puddle of mirrored liquid. She was just too cool.
Kristen asks, "JTT or Devon Sawa?"
It's like you broke into my 13-year old mind and found all of the Bop! foldouts plastering its walls. It's almost a tie, but I think Devon Sawa really got me in Now and Then. My friend told me you could see him running naked through the woods and we tried forever to pause it at just the right moment. Never did catch it, but the fun was in the chase.
Taylor Hanson or Nick Carter?
Nick Carter, for sure. See above my resounding bitterness about not getting to keep that teddy bear he dropped at the concert.
The Wonder Years or Boy Meets World?
Wow, that i quite the question. First of all, I'm beyond jealous of your FOX Kids experience. Did you ever make it as a correspondent? Is it possible it was a local program? In a brief search, I found Chris Leary, a personality on the Fox Kids radio show. http://www.kyranthia.net/countdown.html It doesn't sound like he was on TV, though. I also found Chris Eddy http://www.dorkclub.com/?p=34, but he sounds possibly local to the Northern California region.
Or, was it maybe this guy:
I don't think any of these are what you're talking about, but I will keep looking! Regardless, that video is sort of entertaining so please enjoy :)
Anonymous asks, "If you were stuck on a island and could only have one VHS to watch, which one would it be?"
That's a tough one. I'd like to name some obscure, thought-provoking independent film with subtitles, but truthfully my choices in the era of VHS were not so highbrow. To be honest, I'm leaning toward Troop Beverly Hills. I know the whole movie by heart, but I still love it. It's probably tied with Clueless and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. I watched both of those on VHS at least 30 times. They're like old friends. I felt so betrayed when VHS technology went out of date, it was like severing ties with some of my closest pals.
The One With... asks, "How do you decide on your topic for the day?"
I wish I could say I have a system, but usually I look through my list and try to get inspired. A lot of the time I'll start an introduction for a few different topics before I settle on one I'd like to write about. I want to make sure it's something people can relate to. Sometimes I think I've thought of a topic that will go over well, and it seems to bomb. I like writing features that focus on several different specific topics under a more general theme umbrella--there's a better chance that y'all will find something that strikes a memory chord. It also involves less extensive research, but I swear it's not just my laziness. In the eternally wise words of Sister Hazel, it's all for you, 90s children.
Sadako asks, "Cuter Boy Meets World hottie, Eric or Shawn?"
For me, it was Eric, no contest. They both had great hear, though. Ryder Strong might win in a cool name contest, but I had a thing for Will Friedle.
The K Family asks, "Ever think about making an "I love the 80's" site as well?"
I would love to, as a lot of the memories are overlapping. Children of the 90s are usually Babies of the 80s, so there's a lot of nostalgic gray area. I've realized that writing one daily blog is a lot of work, though; I don't think I could handle two! To keep my sanity intact and the sarcasm flowing, I think I need to concentrate my efforts.
Ah, the eternal debate. My boyfriend thinks I'm crazy for "holding on" to big topics in case I get a bunch of new readers. I don't want to give it all away too soon, or there'll be nothing left to reminisce over. This strategy seems to be a bust, though, because the topics I think people will go nuts for usually end up being pretty tame. Beanie Babies really didn't catch on the way I'd expected. Either way, a pogs post is definitely forthcoming.
It's definitely in the works! I have this weird blogging tic where I'm sort of afraid to write about my favorite things for fear I won't do justice to them. I want to make sure I'm writing about those things on days when I'm really on. I'm afraid they won't be the same unless I can get some really good jokes in there. I was actually planning on writing about 90210 one day last week, but it sort of segued into a topic of 30-year old actors portraying high school students. That's really here nor there, though, I promise I would never forget 90210.
Thanks again to everyone for writing in questions and supporting this crazy blog project. When I first started it and set up Analytics, I remember seeing that 14 people had visited and I was in awe, so you can imagine my surprise to find that it's sort of catching on. You guys are the best. We're actually hashing out some T-shirt designs, I may have to put them up for a vote. I think it's a fun idea and my boyfriend (who is literally my #1 fan, according to Facebook) has been working on some very cool mock-ups. I'm off to search the Dallas area for some promising giveaway items. I can't promise a date for this mythical giveaway, but I promise to make it fun. I'll see all of you tomorrow for some good old fashioned 90s ribbing.