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3 things I miss about my youth

June 25, 2011

1. FAO Schwarz

San Francisco store

Up until around 2002 there was an FAO Schwarz in San Francisco. I used to love hanging out in this three storied store from an appropriate age (elementary school) all the way through college. How great was it going to a place that although was about making money, also provided the opportunity to really feel like you were taking a break from real life and going to a magical land filled with toys and candy. Sadly, it did not last, you know, due to that whole “making money” thing. I was able to make it to the FAO in Las Vegas before it closed a couple of years ago too but it already had that deserted feel to it and I was sad to find out they did not have the singing clock ala San Francisco. Hopefully by the time I finally visit New York, the last remaining FAO will still be there.

Here’s a video of the awesome song that would play constantly in the store using about the saddest picture ever (not the SF store either):


2. Cartoons

More specifically the weekday afternoon cartoons put out by Disney and Warner Brothers in the late 80s early 90s.  Yet again, I was still watching these at an age when it was no longer “appropriate” but enjoyed immensely non the less. On the WB end there was Tiny Toon Adventure’s, Animaniacs, and the short lived Histeria! Disney gave us Chip ‘n’ Dale’s Rescue Rangers, Tale Spin, Darkwing Duck, and two of my all time favorites, Recess and Pepper Ann. The WB cartoons let me know that being weird and knowing way too much about pop culture was cool, while the Disney cartoons gave me the time to still feel young and innocent when sometimes the rest of life told me I had to grow up.

Histeria! – better then history class.

Pepper Ann – “Who is she, and why does she have her own song?”


3. Record Stores

San Francisco Virgin Megastore

The great teenage tradition of hanging out in record stores is pretty much gone. I have specific memories of passing so much time at Tower Records, Sam Goody, and the Virgin Megastore either listening to music, reading magazines, or just wondering the aisles looking at things. I can remember at what locations I bought specific albums and where I was in my life when I bought them. I have no such memories of downloading an album from the internet. Yes there are still independent record stores around, and yes I realize “the death of the music industry” has been written about before, but I can’t help but feel bad for kids now who won’t have these experiences. You can probably add bookstores to this as well (RIP Borders).

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