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  • Andrea Benaim

Quarantine in the Early 2000s

Updated: Apr 23, 2020

This year sucks. There’s no sugarcoating it, so we won’t: someone pissed 2020 off. Maybe they hacked her Instagram, or stole her AirPods, or sweetened her coffee with cane sugar instead of Monk Fruit sweetener, or, you know, didn’t address climate change and managed to burn down all of Australia *sigh*… In any case, she’s really making us pay for it.


Of course, we started reminiscing about better days… like in 2019, when we were free and happy and didn’t even know it, or 2011 when Pitbull (a.k.a Mr. 305, Mr. Worldwide) literally ruled the world (seriously, every single song from 2011-2014 was “Ft. Pitbull”. It’s a fact. He owned planet Earth), and somehow we entered a rabbit hole that went back in time and ended up here: Remember the early 2000s? What a time to be alive. Wait, can you imagine being quarantined back then? Actually, we can… and we did.

Please enjoy:


- You already watched every DVD and VHS in your house, so Blockbuster video is an essential business, and Netflix is just for weirdos who can’t stick to a timeline


- You are only able to take a “selfie” with your 8 megapixel digital camera. And it’s gonna take a full week to upload to your computer so you can edit it and then… print it? What do people even do with pictures?


- Digital pets are all the rage: your Neopet is finally well fed and entertained, your Tamagotchi isn’t dead, so that’s new, and your Furby is still waking you up at 2am for no particular reason

- No one knows much about Kim Kardashian (and the others) yet, because her sex tape won’t drop until 2007. In the meantime, we can watch The Simple Life.


- Even though you have to sit through commercials, because there's no such thing as a streaming platform, television is in its prime:

  • The age old question: Nickelodeon or Disney Channel? –– If you think Cartoon Network should be included, just leave now. Just kidding, keep reading even though you’re weird. Doesn’t matter which one you like better, they are both instrumental in shaping you as a person

  • Nickelodeon has The Amanda Show, Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide, Unfabulous, As Told By Ginger, The Fairly OddParents, Jimmy Neutron, Drake and Josh, and, of course, Kenan and Kel - I mean...

  • Disney Channel has Lizzie McGuire, Kim Possible, The Proud Family, That’s So Raven, Even Stevens, and Disney Channel Original Movies like The Cheetah Girls, The Luck of the Irish, Pixel Perfect and Cadet Kelly… please.

  • Kick back and watch the best of MTV: Cribs, Room Raiders, My Super Sweet 16, Pimp My Ride, Next, and The Osbournes, and of course your weekly dose of MTV’s Top 20 Countdown so you can stay in-the-know with the latest bops and dance moves

  • You are also watching shows that will shape society as a whole, shows that you’ll continue to watch well into your 20’s and 30’s: Friends, Gilmore Girls, Seinfeld, 7th Heaven, Grey’s Anatomy, That 70’s Show, Sex and the City...

  • Bonus: if you’re hispanic, you’re probably spending a lot of your time catching up with Floricienta, Rebelde, Chiquititas, and Vivan los Niños

- You’re spending 4 hours a day downloading songs from LimeWire, and getting 8 new viruses for every song, just so you can burn a CD with the perfect blend of pop and punk rock


- Your mom keeps yelling at you because you insist on using your Heelys to commute from the living room to the kitchen

- You’re not going for walks to get fresh air, cause walks are boring and you have way better outdoor activities, including (but not limited to):

  • Mastering in-line skates

  • Trying to do tricks on your Razor scooter, only to have it hit your ankle really, really hard

  • Beating your siblings at the number of times you can skip over your Skip-it before you hurt yourself

- Everyone in the house is yelling at each other to get off the phone, because there’s only one landline and you’re running out of minutes on your cellphone


- Speaking of cellphones: you’ve mastered snake on your Nokia, opening and closing your Motorola Razr the cool way (with one hand, you know), and you’ve started begging your parents to buy you a Sidekick

- You don't know what FaceTime is, and Skype is still just for old people and businesses, but Kim Possible has a video phone and you know that’s the future


- Facebook is still just for college students, but your MySpace page is poppin’


- The only way you can talk to your friends is on I.M., so you spend all day chatting with them on AOL or MSN, and creating the perfect “status” message with emojis, music, and your crush’s initials

- You are a beacon of patience. You are comfortable waiting minutes (MINUTES!!) for a page to load…and some of us are still dealing with dial-up––Oy.


- Your computer game collection is getting more action than ever before, you already beat Freddi Fish (all eight of them) twice, you have 32 families to keep track of on Sims, you are a master at Pinball and Minesweeper, and you were starting to worry you’d run out of games until you discovered the world of MiniClip.com and ElastoMania.com

- You would die for Coldplay, Green Day, Blink 182 and Red Hot Chilli Peppers because you’re deep like that, but your Britney Spears CD is scratched from you replaying “Lucky” so many times… I guess you’re multifaceted?


- You have mastered the Ketchup song after hours of practice, cause aserejé?

- On that note, you know every move to “Oops I Did It Again,” you can perform “Come On Over” like Christina Aguilera herself, you came up with a new dance to every boyband song you know, performed the S Club 7 song for your whole family, and you’ve finessed a way to make your parents do the “Cha Cha Slide”

- You just got in a huge fight with your sister because she said N’Sync is is better than Backstreet Boys and that’s just false


- You’re spending many hours perfecting the art of 2000’s hair trends:

  • Figuring out how many butterfly clips is too many, hurting your hands and your scalp to create the perfect tiny braids, crimping your hair, convincing yourself that faux-hair scrunchies aren’t gross (they are.)

  • Parting your hair into a zig-zag, or cutting your own side bangs

  • Topping anything off with blue hair mascara and glitter gel

  • Of course when you’re done with that mess, you give up and take all the greasy hair out of your face and either hide it with a bandanna or pull it back with a zig-zag hairband, all while trying your hardest not to stab your eye out with the pointy side

- You look super cute wearing your Juicy Couture tracksuit (or more likely the Limited Too version of the trend) around the house


- Your fingers have been stuck together for two days because you tried to make something out of paper maché that you saw on Art Attack

- You’ve somehow managed to navigate your way into the dark and scary part of the Internet, a.k.a chat rooms, and things are starting to get weird


- You haven't slept in 3 days because you’re trying to beat a really hard level on Mario something, Grand Theft Auto or Crazy Taxi on your Sony Playstation 2, your Nintendo GameCube, or your Xbox

  • Added bonus, you can take the action anywhere you go (in your house) with your Gameboy Advance or your Gameboy SP –– in other words, you’re living the life


All things considered, would we be okay quarantining in the early 2000s? Me thinks yes.




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