Sometimes, nostalgia comes forth as a by-product of missing something. Others times, we miss someone. But it is also possible to be nostalgic for a state of being. Right now, I really, really miss the days when following the advice in this song seemed like an attainable goal.
My birthday was a couple days ago and, as I always do around this time of year, I got to thinking about the years past, and my childhood. I started thinking about all of the things that I miss about being a kid in elementary school in the 90s: Trapper Keepers, Lisa Frank stationary, the Crayola Big Box, stencils, pencil cases, and the scent of new composition books.
What are some of your favourite childhood memories?
One of the greatest things about growing up in the 90s was the amazing R&B music of the time. Unlike today’s R&B, which is mostly saturated with lyrics about cheating, trying to cheat, and meaningless sex, the 90s offered a buffet of “I want to get to know you”, “I’m falling in love”, and “I want to make love” records.
I was only 10 years old when Groove Theory, featuring the amazing (and amazingly underrated) croonings of Amel Larrieux released the single “Tell me” and even as a child, I understood that I was listening to something incredible. Besides the almost supernatural vocals, the lyrics were a straight-forward, no-bullshit confessional of attraction and genuine interest in a relationship, all tied up in a slow-dance, bob-your-head-worthy groove.
Sometimes, I think about this song and the many others that I sang when I was too young to understand the full breadth of these emotions and I’m almost saddened for today’s generation, in which such a powerful influence as music lacks any mention of real relationships and romance.
Luckily, “Tell me” has never gotten old, and when I hear some nonsense lyrics about juggling multiple women, I can always turn up the volume and drown it out.
Today, for whatever reason, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about some of my favourite cartoons from the 90s, specifically “Captain Planet” and even more specifically, the character Ma-Ti. Those of you too young to know about “Captain Planet”, I mourn for you. Seriously. This is probably one of the coolest shows ever, even if the ultimate message was to recycle, something that was consistently lost on the viewing audience in what was quite possibly the least eco-friendly generation that has ever lived.
But I digress. “Captain Planet” was beyond amazing but Ma-Ti’s power, heart (seriously, it was heart), was undoubtedly the lamest superpower in life. Earth, fire, wind, and water were amazing abilities that were consistently displayed as jaw-droppingly formidable, but Ma-Ti’s power was so weak (even the way he said it was weak and depressing) that is was only ever used as a last resort when the Planeteers were about to get killed and even then, the creepy, voodoo-laden ability was more than a bit disturbing, not to mention just barely effective.
Moral of the Story: If you’ve run out of elements, don’t create another character. I understand the need to be all-inclusively multi-cultural, but if I were South American, I would have felt terribly shafted. I’m just saying….