Wednesday, 27 December 2017

these kids today with their y2k

For those who have become accustomed to using the turn of the century or fin de siècle as a way to reckon future and past dates I’m sure have already come to wrestle with the sobering fact that the Year 2000 Computer Bug will attain the age of majority soon and that 1970 is not thirty years in the past but more like nearly five decades and hardly futuristic.
We nonetheless appreciated this collection of popular culture call-backs that the times inspired—from novelty songs, sitcom staples, class-action suits and survival guides for the technological apocalypse soon to visit humanity. Ultimately, there was no ensuing disaster and tigers did not rain from the heavens (no matter how we might try to frighten ourselves) and while I know that there’s little commonality about this non-event and the esteem for which we have for other, real impending disasters which may not be repaired with a simple patch are nonetheless within our power to prevent and part of me wonders if that boy-who-cried-wolf, survivor-mentality does not somehow resign some to leave everything to invisible hand, trickle-down providence. What do you remember about those last tense moments but forcing oneself to abandon and partying like it was 1999? What media digest do you remember prophesying the worst?  I suppose the y2k worries and shared memories will perhaps even more so than the prevalence of connectivity and virtual personae be the shibboleth that separates one generation from the next.