Middle School 1988 vs. 2016

Middle School Bangs

I am struggling with everything for Middle School and I don’t even attend it. Like an ongoing war, comrades are starting to drop left and right. Yesterday I received this text:Middle School Text


The only good thing that has come of it, is that my oldest goes back to what I like to call “normal grading”; not this everyone gets a trophy mentality. Up until 6th grade, the grading system is something like this:

E- Exceptional

M- Masters


??- Means you suck (obviously I forget this letter)

It’s hard to wrap my brain around that type of grading because I always attempt to match it with grades A+ through F-, and they are making it really hard for me, but I digress.

Here are some comparisons of when I was in middle school in the late 80’s vs. today. If you have young children not yet in this debacle or plan to have kids one day, maybe you should just skip this post. For those of you that have had your babies grow up and you don’t have to deal with this anymore- I HATE YOU!



We have books, lot’s of books! ALL of them were last printed in 1979 eliciting laughter as you and your friends point out the fro’s and bell bottoms. We take the books home, retrieve roughly 7-9 brown paper bags and attempt to cut them perfectly to fit our books. 20 minutes later and strips of brown paper all around you, you say screw it and grab the foil; convinced you will be a trend setter.


No books, none whatsoever! Dirt poor without access to the internet? Big problem as the school sends a letter home on day 1 explaining you have to have internet or must take your child every night to the library to do online homework. Our local library has 3 computers.



God I loved my cassette tapes. For $7.99, any song could be yours. Want to save money? I just hoisted my boom box up to the radio and recorded the song off the radio. When I wasn’t organizing cassettes, I was penning letters to my 15 pen pals I had met at Space Camp. We were planning a reunion but since our landline cost money to dial anywhere other than our city, we were forced to use the mail system. For entertainment in the evenings, I would use our cable box and select 1 of the 37 channels. I would watch the Golden Girls or the Cosby Show. I would maybe even tape it if Blanche was dealing with a family member diagnosed with AIDS or the previews showed Rudy doing something adorable.


Occasionally my son will be posting something on Instagram while watching a soccer video on his Chromebook while occasionally flipping through our 348 channels to check scores. He is begging me to upgrade his generic Sony Aquos phone that the Sprint guy told us 3 years ago was hotter than IPhone in Japan right now. Liar.



In the late 80’s it was not uncommon for me to have 2 Swatch Watches on my arm, a watch in my side pony tail sprouting to the upper Southwest side of my head and a gigantic watch purse. After doing ancestry DNA test, it’s been concluded I am a direct descendant of Flava Flav.


I can’t speak to girls fashion all I know is my sons haven’t worn cotton since the little baby blankets I would swaddle them in. Everything is Nike or Under Armour which is that nylon fabric. It is not uncommon for my youngest to walk downstairs looking like glowing booger as he is wearing head to toe neon green. The icing on the cake is when he announces, “Even my underwear is neon green mom!”



Just say it Hot Mess! Just say it! BANGS!!! BANGS EVERYWHERE! Oh my God what were we thinking? Until 7th grade, I didn’t know how to style my coarse bangs so instead of curling forward to get the waterfall effect, I curled them backwards, wondering why my bangs didn’t look like the other girl’s bangs. In fact, my bangs looked like a cluster of unruly pubic hairs who got together and formed a mega pub…..curled backwards. This is probably why I was very unpopular in middle school.


God bless these kids, for the most part, the girls are keeping their hair natural and flowy (with the exception of the cheerleaders that put their hair up on their skull, resembling water shooting from a whale’s blowhole). I like my sons’ hair, they keep it tightly shaven on the sides and long on the top, like some of the famous soccer players. Perhaps their kids will laugh at it but for now, it looks cool.


So those are a few comparisons. I don’t want to be long winded so I’ll end it here. If I think of more….if you think of more….I may have post #2. What would be really interesting (and I pose this to my 20-something readers) is to see your comparison of growing up in the 90’s vs. what you see around you now. Hell, anyone in any decade! I love to see the comparison.

Share the laughs with friends!

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