In the '90s, malls were the setting for many of our teenage adventures. Indeed, '90s malls weren't just for shopping. Those malls were where you socialized, fell in love, and generally hung around in like some delinquent. The mall was life in the '90s. It was the center of your world, and you'd get into arguments with your parents about just wanting to go and sit around in the food court with your friends all day Saturday. There's something about that now that is obviously unappealing. However, there are things you did at the mall in the '90s that you most definitely probably wish you could do now. Now you just rush in, complain about crowds and other people's crying children, get confused, and wind up leaving with something you didn't even need.
The '90s, on the other hand, were an idyllic time to be a kid or a teen hanging out at the mall. It might have annoyed adults shaking their fists at clouds, but it was still expected. Without groups of kids hanging around at the mall, how would we even have known it was really the '90s. While there are lots of '90s mall stores that don't exist anymore, there are still ways to translate the fun you had to today. If only you'd have the '90s attitude required to do some of these things! Here are 11 things you did at the mall in the '90s that you wish you could do now.
1. Go On A Date
Adults obviously don't think of "the mall" as a prime date spot. But it was the best place for a date in the '90s. Imagine the cuteness of playing games at the arcade, going for pancakes with ice cream and sprinkles on them, and catching a movie with someone you like now. It doesn't sound as horribly tacky as the idea did at first, does it? Maybe a little throwback romance for your lovely couple?
2. Just Kind Of Hang About
No one just hangs any more. Everyone needs a screen. In the '90s, we just kind of aimlessly hung around, walking the mall, or sitting in the food court, and laughing with friends. There was no rush or anything to do really, other than just chill out in a nice heated or air conditioned environment, depending on the season.
3. Have An Entire Romance Play Out
If you had a crush on someone, an afternoon at the mall in the '90s could seem like an entire rom com. Furtive glances through clothes racks, before finally being drawn together by mutual friends, and having a montage of fun together. It's hard enough to meet people these days, imagine if mall romance was still a thing!
4. Bump Into Everyone You Know In One Afternoon
Where can you go these days to accidentally bump into everyone you know, other than Facebook? The mall is where you'd run into people you didn't even know you needed to run into in the '90s. Bring it back!
5. Play At The Arcade All Day And Try To Win The Huge Soft Toy Prize With Your Tickets
As an adult it's probably not the most productive thing in the world to spend a day at the mall trying to win prizes, but judging by how amazing it was in the '90s, we should probably give ourselves a day off to win the giant teddy bear.
6. Pay For One Movie Ticket And Then Just Cruise From Movie To Movie For Hours
Look, I'm not advocating breaking the law. But when you were a kid who didn't know any better, you'd buy one movie ticket and go to whatever movie was showing after you'd finished watching the first one. It was rebellious and kind of illegal, but wonderful. Don't do it now. Just dream about doing it.
7. Make Out In The Movie Theatre
What we can really bring back is making out in the movies. When did we stop doing that? Being in a boring movie with someone you like to make out with, it just makes sense to kiss! Smooch more in boring movies like we did in the '90s!
8. Use Samples In Beauty Stores To Do Your Makeup And Nails
As adults we still use beauty samples, but with the actual intention of sampling. When you were a kid in the '90s you'd used all samples available in order to create a full look. Which meant that your look could be different every time you went to the mall.
9. Cram All Your Friends Into The Photo Booth At Least Seven Times So You'd All Go Home With A Printed Picture
Now we all cram into selfies. Which will never be as fun as cramming into a photo booth at the mall, or as rewarding as getting a little photo print out after what felt like hours of waiting for it to print.
10. Sit On Santa's Lap At Christmas
Totally normal and fun to sit on Santa's lap at the mall when you were 12 and it was 1996. Slightly weirder now that you're a grown up.
11. Call Your Mom To Pick You Up
In the '90s, your mom would pick you up from the mall. Now it's just all public transport and driving yourself. Bring back the glory days of mom lifts!
Images: Paramount Pictures; Giphy (6)