1. Going to the video store when you felt like watching something.
And trying to figure out which cover to take to the counter.
2. Having to rewind the entire film on VHS before being able to watch it.
“Be kind, rewind!” was your mantra.
3. Having to put in a second tape to watch the second half of the movie.
4. And the feeling of helplessness when the tape was irreparably damaged.
This is painful.
5. Sacrificing the internet when someone wanted to make a phone call.
And always playing solitaire or pinball in the meantime.
6. Groaning whenever you heard the dial-up tone.
“NEEE NENEE NAAA NEEE”
7. And knowing someone in the house could always be listening in on your calls.
8. Flipping through this CD case just to find that one song on that one album.
9. Spending hours crafting the perfect mix CD.
10. And feeling heartbroken when you saw this.
Acting on rumours that you could fix it with banana peel tended to be in vain.
11. Memorising your friends’ numbers and having to arrange exactly what time you’d call them.
And being unable to forget some of their numbers to this day.
12. Recording your favourite songs by sitting quietly around a radio.
Timing was everything.
13. And manually writing out the lyrics to a song by playing it over and over again.
14. Having to let go of a question that’s nagging at you because you can’t just “google it”.
Or cracking out the old encyclopedia if you were really eager.
15. Not being able to retake a photo.
Every shot had to be the winning shot.
16. Not knowing a picture was bad until you got the film developed.
Leaving you stuck with red eye and double chins that will haunt you for life.
17. And eventually upgrading to taking selfies on your grainy webcam.
18. Actually having to use a TV guide.
And cross-referencing and highlighting what you were going to watch.
19. The disappointment of seeing this screen.
20. Getting up at a specific time to catch your favourite show.
You’d cancel plans to watch TV because otherwise who knows when you’d get to see an episode you missed?
21. And testing your patience when you had to type using this keyboard.
Typing “hello” took thirteen clicks. Thirteen.
VHS tapes were never as fancy as cassettes and couldn’t be flipped. An earlier version of this post said they could.