Last week, I turned 33. Thirty-frickin'-three, you guys. While all of the '90s nostalgia ruling the world right now sometimes makes me feel immortal, there are certain things that make '90s kids feel old — and another passing year is one of them, have no doubt. But it isn't just birthdays that remind us we're no longer the Discman-toting, choker-wearing, Clarissa Explains It All -watching '90s kids of yore. Real talk: There is no shortage of things that make us feel old AF these days.
On my birthday, I had a flashback to a convo I shared with my BFF way back in the day. At the time, we were talking about how old our parents were. My mom was 34 and hers was 36 ... and that seemed ancient to us. Now we're approaching that precipice and have kids of our own, who will undoubtedly soon think we're dinosaurs — if they don't already. The cycle of life has a wicked sense of humor, no?
But if we're going to look at the silver lining, at least we have the benefit of tremendous personal growth from the many, many, many passing years since we thought there was no such thing as too much body glitter and were convinced we'd one day marry Freddie Prinze Jr. (curse you, Sarah Michelle Gellar!) Try to keep that in mind as we take a look at some of the things that make us feel our age and then some.
1. Titanic Was Released Almost 20 Years Ago
Eesh, this one stings. I distinctly remember piling into my friend's mom's Grand Caravan so she could drop us off at the movie theater for this classic... which I naturally dragged my crush to the following weekend. He so needed a few pointers from Jack Dawson.
2. Alisan Porter, Who Played Curly Sue, Is Now a Contestant on The Voice
Who didn't love the 1991 John Hughes flick Curly Sue? Porter was the cutest little roughneck kid to ever walk around and con people. Now, she is a married mother of two and stepmom of one who overcame drug and alcohol addictions to become one of the top 10 contestants on Season 10 of The Voice.
3. The Taco Bell Chihuahua Has Gone To Doggy Heaven, May She RIP
The first Taco Bell commercial featuring the Taco Bell Chihuahua was 19 years ago, so "¡Yo quiero Taco Bell!" was basically a catchphrase of my youth. Thus it is with great sadness I report cute little Gidget — the chihuahua who starred in the Taco Bell commercials and, later, as Bruiser's mom in Legally Blonde 2 — went to that big Taco Bell in the sky in 2009 at the age of 15.
4. Watching Girl Meets World
Don't get me wrong — I totally watch and adore this reboot. But having come of age watching Corey and Topango on Boy Meets World , the fact that they have a 14-year-old daughter is a bit much for my brain to process sometimes. See also: Fuller House.
5. If Tommy Pickles Was Around Today, He'd Be 26 Years Old
That's right. The adorable, diapered ring leader of the Rugrats clan would be all grown up and likely toting around some diaper-bottomed babies of his own. Angelica? Even older. What the actual eff? I swear we were just tuning into their toddler shenanigans.
6. We Actually Reached the Future from Back to the Future
In the iconic 1989 film Back to the Future II, Doc Brown set the DeLorean for October 21, 2015 — making it, obviously, many years in the future. Last year, though, we officially passed that date, meaning all of Back to the Future is now entirely set in the past. We are now just as far away from the year the movie took place (1985) as Marty McFly was from 1955. Mind. Blown.
7. The Backstreet Boys' Debut Album Was Released Exactly 20 Years Ago
While we in the States had to wait one more year to memorize every word to songs like "Quit Playin' Games (With My Heart)" and "We've Got It Goin' On," fans abroad got a leg up when the international version of Backstreet Boys dropped in 1996. They are celebrating their 20th anniversary this month with a fan cruise.
8. And the Backstreet Boys' A.J. McLean Has Hairplugs
For the record, there ain't nothing wrong with a fella gettin' a few hairplugs if it makes him feel more confident. It's simply the fact that one of our foremost teen heartthrobs of the '90s has aged enough to merit such measures that makes us feel our own mortality.
9. When Kids Today Make Fun of the Technology You Thought Was So Cutting Edge
Recently, I found my old Game Boy buried in a bin filled with other relics of my younger years, and I was stoked to see it still worked once charged. Upon handing it to my 5 year old, however, she was legitimately puzzled as to what this weird device could possibly be — and kept trying to touch the screen to play. Face, meet palm.
10. It's Been More Than Two Decades Since Saved by the Bell Ended
Zack Morris, Kelly Kapowki, A.C. Slater, Jesse Spano, Lisa Turtle and, yes, even Screech were household staples growing up, so it's bizarre to think 23 years have gone by since the OG series' finale. I mean, you guys, Mark-Paul Gosselaar is now 42. True story.
11. Going to the Mall
Back in the day, the mall was our domain. We'd buy BFF necklaces at Claire's, hit up Hot Topic, and slurp down Orange Juliuses to our heart's content. But have you been to the mall recently? Herds of leggy teens toting smartphones and designer bags rule the realm that was once ours — and we fit in better with the senior ladies doing power-laps around the mall's perimeter.
12. Phoebe's Triplets Would Be Graduating High School This Year
Wasn't Friends just on TV? And wasn't Phoebe just a surrogate for her brother's triplets? How is it possible they'd be getting their diplomas this year?! Plus, Ben would be graduating college, Emma would be prepping for her driver's license test, and Monica and Chandler's twins would be entering teenage-hood at 13.
13. Being Called "Ma'am"
Or Mrs, or any variation of the above. Yes, it is polite and that's swell. But when in the names of all things holy did '90s kids become old enough to be considered ma'ams? That's what our moms are. The worst is when it comes from a college-aged kid, whom we all like to imagine we aren't that much older than.
14. This Happened 26 Years Ago
15. And This Is Macauley Culkin Today
Images: Universal Pictures; 20th Century Fox; Giphy (12)