Let’s get any mortality misconceptions out of the way.
I’m not obsessed with death.
I am obsessed with the passage of time.
During a lull in party conversation, I’m the guy who will start a sentence with, “Did you know it’s been five years since…?”
I’m the living version of really annoying Google alert you forgot you created.
I love time’s multi-pronged nature. How it chooses to remind us what once was will never be again, no matter how many of your high school friends you manage to drag out to a bar for one night with the sole purpose of forgetting that fact.
Sometimes it reveals itself slowly, like fog dissipating as you slowly realize you haven’t heard this song in years but are somehow confidently singing 90 percent of the lyrics.
Most often, it unexpectedly arrives like a lightening bolt in the form of a TimeHop notification on Facebook (Yes, not so long ago you started your meaningless statuses with “is”).
Then there’s the reality-altering bombshells, causing the level of disbelief you had when you found out about the “Berenstein – Berenstain Bears” conspiracy (I swear I knew it as Berenstein).
This includes rediscovering “I’ll Be Your Everything,” a song produced by late-90s boyband Youngstown for the 1999 “Inspector Gadget” movie.
You may remember it. It was one of those six or seven songs Radio Disney (“We’re all ears!”) would play in the endless loop you’d force your parents to suffer through. The music video was a constant on the Disney Channel.
This is the song and lyrics you remember. The version our parents were perfectly fine with us listening to adnauseum.
How naive we were.
It took me until 2016 – 17 years later – to realize that wasn’t the only version. In the original “non-Disney” version, “gadget” has a completely different meaning.
This was the same year Lou Bega released his song “Mambo No. 5.” The tune that starts out with “Let’s ride to the liquor store” and lists all the women Bega wants “a little bit of.”
That was before Disney got a hold of it. It turned sent Bega to the “candy store,” changed “gin and juice” to “ice cream” and made the list of women Bega desired into classic Disney characters.
Time likes to remind us it’s still creeping along. No matter how it happens, it’s always a surprise and every once in awhile, it’s a pleasant one.
Since I turned 25 three months ago, the rate at which this occurs feels like it’s grown exponentially.
Here are other ways life has taken it upon itself to remind me it’s “been a few years.”
- After doing the math I realized I’m older than my dad was when he saw “Top Gun” when it was first released 30 year ago.
- Last week, I watched the 2005 comedy “Wedding Crashers” on cable. It was broadcast in standard definition, black bars and all.
- Facebook’s “Trending” topics thought it would be nice to let me know May 23rd was the 15th anniversary of the series finale of “Star Trek: Voyager.”
- A one-month free trial to SiriusXM led to a lot of listening to the “Y2Kountry” station. I remember a lot more mid-2000s country music than I probably should.
- Every once in awhile I remind myself that my 10 year high school reunion is three years away.
- Random GIF sets on Tumblr from early 2000s animated movies I only saw once.