Crucial Life Lessons From '90s Pop Culture
by Amy Roberts

I'm of the strong belief that pop culture can act as a sort of mentor and guru for guiding you through life. And that's especially true when you're growing up. The best era for such soul-enriching epiphanies? The '90s, of course. There are a ton of life lessons we learned from the '90s, which still hold true to this day. Some of them are profound, some of them less so, and some of them are barely even useful on a day-to-day basis. But goodness, you guys, all of them are totally real. For women, some of the best feminist characters of the '90s existed during this time, giving us the additional educational benefits of legitimate revolutionary ideas, all from the comfort of our couches.

These are all things that '90s kids can relate to pretty easily, but even if you didn't have the pleasure of growing up during this era, I still think they'll pertain to your life. After all, you only need to enjoy a marathon of the best '90s shows and movies on Netflix right now to understand what I'm talking about. Pop culture in the '90s was packed with important learning experiences and educational platitudes, and below is a roundup of some of the realest ones the era had to offer.


Your Best Friend Is Someone Who You Can Be Your Best & Silliest Self With

Seriously. If you can spend an entire day watching music videos together on the couch and making dumb jokes the whole time without it getting tedious, then they're a keeper.


Women Are Strong As Hell

Thank you Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Xena: Warrior Princess, and The Powerpuff Girls for making this point totally clear to us as kids.


Sarcasm Definitely Isn't The Lowest Form Of Humor

Like, have you ever even listened to Daria Morgendorffer? Or Chandler Bing? Or Xander Harris? Come on. Sarcasm's the best.


Pizza Is Life

All hail the mighty slice. Long may it reign over our appetites and taste palettes in the same the way it did for '90s TV show character. Blessed be.


Being Mean To Your Crush Definitely Isn't Cute

Was Helga Pataki one of the most tortured, conflicted cartoon characters of the '90s? Definitely. But my god, woman, just be nice and tell Arnold that you like him already.


Being Nakey Is Good & Free

Being body confident is supreme, people. Love your body, be proud of it, and let it be free. (Within reason, guys. Don't be getting arrested for stripping at the food court...)


Avoid Caffeine Pills, At All Costs

Total meltdown central. Avoid.


Don't Propose To The Love Of Your Life While Bungee-Jumping On Live TV

Sure, an elaborate, high stakes proposal is a great way to show someone how much you love them, on paper. But in practice? Not so much. Especially not when it ends in death on live TV in front of your bride-to-be. Poor Hilary Banks.


TV Is Not The Place To Work Out Your Problems

Take care of yourselves and each other. Just for the love of sanity, don't do it on TV.


Windows Are A Legitimate Way To Enter A Building

I mean, you can just pop a ladder up to any window, and it's automatically a fun, exciting door. And totally, absolutely safe. Right? Right.


... But You Should Also Be Super Cautious About Guys Who Sneak In Through Your Window

If they're as cute as Billy Loomis and their opening line is, "The Exorcist was on and it got me thinking of you," then it should definitely raise some serious red flags about him. I hate to say it, but he's probably a murderer.


The People Who Truly Love You Will Never Leave

I can't talk about this clip, because I'll definitely start uncontrollable sobbing if I do. But I think we can all agree with the fact that this Fresh Prince episode taught us some deep lessons regarding the nature of love and reciprocal respect.


Being "On A Break" Doesn't Mean You Should Hook Up With Someone Else

Seriously, Ross. Still shaking my head over here.


Taking Over A Party With Your Dance Moves Is Kind Of Awesome, But Something You'll Likely Live To Regret

As wonderfully depicted by Matthew Lillard in She's All That and Julia Stiles in 10 Things I Hate About You. Incidentally, this is why I definitely shouldn't be allowed to party anymore.


But Dancing Is Also The Greatest Way To Celebrate Getting Over Someone

Throwing yourself around your bedroom to "Blister In The Sun" by The Violent Femmes should be a soul-cleansing action prescribed by doctors.


You Absolutely Shouldn't Change Yourself To Impress People

From She's All That to Clueless, there wasn't a single makeover in any '90s movie which actually improved the character in any way. Therefore, just be you. You awesome, wonderful goddess.

Well, this overall recapping session has been great. But sadly, class is over until another day. Don't you have some '90s shows to catch up on Netflix? Yeah, I thought so. Watch away, my friends, and don't stop learning.