Today’s high school graduates probably never heard of the Y2K scare.
Maybe that’s a good thing.
Those born during the 1999-2000 school year would probably have a good laugh if they were aware of how fearful some people were of computers back then.
Many people worried computers would stop working at 12 a.m., Jan. 1, 2000, because the machine’s time clocks weren’t programmed for the new millennium. Gone would be the ability to supply energy, control financial markets and run government functions. Some people went as far as stockpiling food, water and ammunition — fearing the world would break out in chaos.
Midnight arrived and nothing happened.
The babies of Y2K – today’s graduates – have never had such worries. New technology has been a fact of life for them. They cannot wait to see what’s next. They put access to technology on the same level as oxygen and freedom.
This is a generation that got hooked by Myspace then upgraded to Facebook; once bugged Mom and Dad for cash, but now prefers their plastic; and had the world’s doors opened to them by a thing called Google.
They were born when people used Napster to download the music of Lenny Kravitz, Kid Rock and the Foo Fighters onto their iPods.
A thing called Bluetooth was in the development stages. HD-TV wasn’t on the radar screen yet, nor was Netflix or Movies on Demand.
The most common name hung on Y2K babies were Emily, Hannah, Alexis, Sarah and Samantha, while the five most popular boys names were Jacob, Michael, Matthew, Joshua and Christopher.
As babies, if they had trouble sleeping at night, their parents likely rocked them while watching popular TV shows such as the “The X-Files,” “ER” and “Ally McBeal,” then tucked them into bed when the Primax Window commercial filled the TV screen.
If their parents wanted to get a baby-sitter and go out for the night, they could enjoy dinner at the Packard Grille or The Huddle in Lima. Later, they could go dancing at the Twist and Shout or catch a movie at the Regal Theatre, where “Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace” or the “The Sixth Sense” might be playing.
When the Y2K babies celebrated their first birthday, a cake from Clem’s Bakery was a must. When they reached first grade, it was time for a birthday party at the Little Squirt Sports Park.
In their middle school years, their parents were cool if they drove an SUV that had DVD and TV monitors installed for watching movies like “Napoleon Dynamite.”
Many of the guys would grow up spending hour after hour playing “Guitar Hero,” “Mario Kart,” “Call of Duty” and “The Legend of Zelda.” In a closet somewhere, parents still may be able to dig up an old Xbox 360, a PlayStation 3 or a Nintendo Wii gaming system.
Young girls loved their Bratz — a group of teenage fashion dolls with large heads and skinny bodies. Spin-offs such as Bratz Kidz and Bratz Babyz soon followed. Bratz characters were commercialized in movies, TV, music albums and video games.
When it came to fashion, a young teenage girl could become the envy of every female in her class by wearing a pair of lace-up jeans that had no pockets. The only problem with such pants was there was no place to put your frosted lip gloss.
Today, these teens go to bed texting and they wake up tweeting. They carry iPhones and tablets. They’ll go on to be our doctors, engineers, teachers, mechanics and soldiers.
Hopefully, they still will have no fear of anything new.
ROSES AND THORNS: A grandmother, daughter and granddaughter find a spot in the rose garden.
Rose: To Quinn Kelley Whittaker, her daughter, Lily, and mom Suzanne Kelley, all of Lima. Suzanne made Lily’s first communion dress out of her mom’s wedding dress.
Rose: To Jim Carder, who will be inducted Saturday into the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame. Playing beside his identical twin brother, Jerry, both at Delphos St. John’s High School and Findlay College during the 1960s, Jim Carder scored inside and outside. In his three years as a starter, St. John’s had a 53-16 record. During his four years in Findlay, the Oilers averaged a remarkable 95.3 points per game while compiling a 72-32 record.
Rose: To Emily Annesser and Jay Kauffman of Ottawa-Glandorf High School. They are among 25 finalists to receive a U.S. Army and Pro Football Hall of Fame Award for Excellence. The program highlights high school athletes who exemplify similar strengths to that of Army soldiers and who excel athletically, academically and are active in their communities. Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz will be in Ottawa on Tuesday to present the award.
Rose: To Allen County Veterans Council President Dan Ross, who secured an F-16 flyover for this year’s Memorial Day Parade in Lima.
Thorn: A lack of street maintenance in the Highland Greens subdivision near Shawnee High School has led to huge potholes, deteriorating curbs, cracks in the roads and flooding problems.
PARTING SHOT: The trouble with learning from experience is that you never graduate.
Jim Krumel is the editor of The Lima News. Contact him at 567-242-0391 or at The Lima News, 3515 Elida Road, Lima, Ohio 45807.