TECHNOLOGICAL MARKERS THAT MAKE ME SEEM ANCIENT TO MYSELF, CHRONOLOGICALLY

Inspired by @zoe. I am 42. So I am "old yet."
  1. Pretty sure they actually taught me basic arithmetic on an abacus in preschool
  2. I saw Star Wars at a Drive-In movie theater when it premiered in Appleton, WI
    The car overheated several times as we waited in a long line of cars to get in. I didn't remember any of the character names and called Darth Vader "black falcon" and stormtroopers "Snowmen."
  3. When I was 7-ish, we (my slightly older brother and I) would listen to books on records.
    The record would read the story and you'd follow along in the paper book. When it was time to turn the page, you'd hear a BING! sound. One record was racist, called "little brave sambo." EEK
  4. We would also listen to my grampa's polka records and dance around in our pajamas like maniacs before bed.
  5. I watched the first ever Space Shuttle launch live on TV
    John Young and Robert Crippen. I'll never forget their names.
  6. We would listen to polkas on 8-track tapes in my grampa's car on our way up to their lake property
    Dad and grampa in the front seat. Smoking cigarettes. All windows rolled up. Me and my bro in the back seat. Bouncing around and dancing. NO ONE IS WEARING SEATBELTS
  7. I had a toy called 2XL that let you play quizzes. On 8-track tapes.
  8. I saw Empire Strikes Back in the theater 11 times!
    Before video stores, popular movies sometimes got "rereleased." So my bro and I would ride our bikes to the local theater for like two summers in a row and Empire was always there. What was the last movie you saw more than ONE TIME at a movie theater?
  9. For most of my childhood, we had only one rotary phone in the house, hanging on a wall in the kitchen
    You'd get annoyed when a friend's phone number had zeros in it. It was super exciting when the phone eventually got a super long stretchy coily cord so you could lay on the couch in the living room and take a call.
  10. It was a big deal when we got a new TV with a remote control
    It was a wired remote. Basically, it looked just like the channel-changing knob on the TV, but on a bulky box at the end of a cord. But laying on the couch changing channels was AMAZING.
  11. I did most of my homework through middle school on an electric typewriter.
    I loved making mistakes so i could use the correction tape.
  12. In middle school, I'd spend hours typing computer program code out of computer magazines into my dad's TI-994A
    The end result would be something simple like a super low-res animation of a stick man dancing.
  13. I would make pretend news broadcasts on my tape recorder
  14. Film used to take a week to process and get back
    After you dropped it off at K-Mart
  15. It blew my mind when some kid taught me how to use a paper-hole-puncher to make my floppy disks double-sided
  16. When I'd play computer games on dad's TI-994A, we'd have to wait for the program to load off of a cassette tape
    Sometimes it took 15 minutes. We'd eat lunch while we waited.
  17. I couldn't believe how advanced the graphics were when we got an Intellivision gaming console
    Night Stalker forever!!
  18. It was devastating for me when Tiffany's "I Think We're Alone Now" beat REO Speedwagon's "In My Dreams" on the Top Ten at Ten on the radio
  19. It was a big, big deal when we upgraded our 300 baud modem to the 2400 baud one
    So much faster EEEE AWWW EEE AWWWW BRRRRRRRR
  20. The sound of a dot-matrix printer printing was always viscerally satisying to me
    Not sure why. I also liked to watch it print. And loved looking at the dots under a magnifying glass.
  21. My favorite computer games as a kid were text-based adventure games
    Which had no graphics at all! Just words. Like Hollywood Hijinx and Suspended and Planetfall.
  22. When you liked someone in college, you made them a mixed tape
    If you really liked them, you wrote out the lyrics and illustrated the tape case with art
  23. When I'd drive back to college after a break, mom made me "call when i got there"
    No cell phones. You were literally incommunicado for 6 hours.
  24. I met my ex in the AOL Writer's Chat Room
    This was before "You've Got Mail" when everyone still thought meeting online was sketchy and creepy. She didn't know what I looked like until I physically mailed her one photo.
  25. On my honeymoon with my ex in July, 2000, we used paper maps to navigate around Ireland
    Did fine.
  26. I remember thinking, "How can it get more advanced than this?"
    About an early Blackberry.
  27. I have been an amazon.com customer for 18 years
    First thing I bought was Wait Till Next Year by William Goldman. Still haven't read it.
  28. Used to be that "who was that guy who played that dude in that one flick??!" sparked a conversation among friends
    Now everyone whips out their smart phone and you know the answer in 2 seconds. Meh. And you never really cared that much in the first place. But back in the day if you DID care you had to go to the fucking library for half a day to find the answer.