The first decade New Year that I remember was 1980. Our science and social studies classes did units with such titles as "what will life be like in the future?"
In our social studies class, we had one role-playing exercise in which each day letters of the alphabet or important words had to be eliminated from our writing. So, on Monday, we could no longer use a, e, and i, and the words "the" and "and." On Tuesday, o and u were forbidden, as were capital letters and punctuation; and on Wednesday, we had to eliminate any form of the verb "to be" and the past tense of all verbs. "This can't possibly be the future," I thought. Now, I think of that every time I see a text message.
In our science class, we had to bring in current event articles on "the future." Someone had an article that predicted that people would all be wearing stretchy fabrics. At the time, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century was on t.v., and Wilma Deering wore these shiny, skin-tight jumpsuits. I thought that would be what we wore. I hadn't yet developed body image issues (just wait a year or two), so I thought "cool." The shiny jumpsuits didn't materialize, but I now think of that article every time I see spandex on the label of a piece of clothing. I still think "cool" because you don't have to iron spandex.
One of the things that I really remember was the promise that, in the future, we would all be driving hovercrafts. You know, like Luke Skywalker in Star Wars. In our gifted and talented class (how I got in, I'll never know), a group of guys even built one with some plywood and a vacuum cleaner. They got it to zoom down one of the hallways in our school. The look of glee on their faces!
Since all of this took place in 1979 and 1980, the "future" was usually implicitly or explicitly supposed to be 2000 and after. Well, we are a decade into the 21st century now and I have just one question.
Where the hell is my hovercraft?