Dan Wainwright says 'nice, but no thanks' to the 90s, while Liz Joyce notes that a touch of romance works wonders amid the gloom.
Dan Wainwright: Smells Like Teen Spirit . . . Or Lynx
Oasis vs Blur, Jarvis Cocker getting arrested for wiggling his bum at Michael Jackson and Baywatch and Bullseye for weekend entertainment – the 1990s gave us much to be thankful for.
Grunge – what the kids were wearing while listening to Nirvana – is apparently back with a vengeance on the catwalks.
And I’m glad my formative decade is getting the revival it so rightly deserves. The TV programme My Mad Fat Diary has a fantastic Britpop soundtrack while various clubs are running Old Skool (sic) nights, even though I am now too old to go to them, just as I was too young for them when it really was the 90s.
On the rare occasions that I will attend a nightclub my “dancing”, a flailing of arms which looks like a mime artist drowning, will appear to the watching crowds like a passable impersonation of the mighty aforementioned Cocker and not out of place when done to an indie backing track.
Retro always seems to be anything that’s about 20 years ago. That means it’s about to be my generation’s turn to start embarrassing the kids by pointing at the soon to launch Tamagotchi app they will have open on their iPhones and saying “I used to have one of those when I was your age” loudly enough for all their friends to hear. Of course it helps if it’s your own kids you’re talking to. Starting conversations with random teenagers on the bus is never a good idea. Fact.
For the uninitiated the Tamagotchi was a little computerised animal you carried around, even at school, and had to remember to feed and play with. They always died of starvation during lunchtime. Oh the cruel irony.
The good thing about the era in which I grew up being back “in”, both in terms of fashion and music, is that I can finally appear to be “with it”.
It’s time for me to bring back my cheek-length, centrally parted curtain hairstyle and start slouching in a black Nike cagoule.
Hmmm. Definitely, maybe... not.
Liz Joyce: Roses are red, violets are blue
What a miserable lot we are.It was supposed to be a week of hearts, flowers and Cupid. Instead, there’s been little more than grumbling and groaning about what a sham Valentine’s Day is. And an expensive sham at that.
I cannot tell you the amount of negativity I’ve encountered this week about February 14. There has been stern-faced couples telling me it’s tacky, smug know-it-alls rolling their eyes and single friends moaning about their lack of love.
Am I missing something here? What’s wrong with Valentine’s Day?
February is a pig of a month and I don’t see the problem with one day of roses and romance to brighten it up.
It’s just a bit of fun, stop taking it so seriously you lot.
Yes, it’s slightly naff but there’s nowt wrong with that in my book. If you’re in a couple, what’s not to like about getting a sweet little card or a bunch of pink pansies from your other half?
And if you’re single, there’s no greater joy than getting together with your mates and either having a onesie-and-wine night in or getting all glammed up and defiantly hitting the town.
Nobody’s asking you to take it uber-seriously, shelling out thousands of pounds on diamonds and pearls or whisking your partner off to Paris. A kind word, a thoughtful act or a funny little gift is all it takes.
Now, I know what you’re going to say, all arms crossed and eyebrows raised, “well, you should be doing things like that all year round”. And yes, you’re right. But in the real world of deadlines, school runs and in-laws, some of us out there need a gentle little reminder.
Now, for those of you who can remember what my other half got me for Christmas - that’d be a fan heater and an electric whisk - I’m sure you’re on tenterhooks to know my Valentine’s gift. An ironing board? A shoe rack? A half-eaten tin of beans?
Well, no actually, I got one of those fancy Kindle Fire things, a bouquet of flowers and a homemade meal. Proof indeed that Valentine’s Day can produce romance miracles.
And that weeks of nagging work.