29 Things That a 2000s Kid Will Never Understand—and Will Sure Make You Feel Old as Heck

Bring back the penny candy and the typewriter! Although you can keep the VHS tapes.

Burning your butt on a metal slide

01-slide-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_536480707-gNeshergNesher/ShutterstockKids' playgrounds today may be slickly designed marvels of safety but pity the child who will never know the thrill (terror?) of rocketing down a steep, metal slide. In the summer. In shorts. To spark more fun memories, check out these 10 nostalgic photos of playgrounds past.

Waiting until 8 p.m. to call grandma

02-call-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_276447773-kurkkurk/ShutterstockYou think phones are complicated now? Just try and keep track of the per-minute price of peak versus after-hours, long-distance versus local, and business versus personal calls. And if you were ever tempted to just call someone without doing all the math, you were swiftly punished with an $800 phone bill. (Of course phone bills are still crazy expensive, just for different reasons now. Use these 7 tricks to lower your cell phone bill.)

"Juice" was anything that wasn't soda or booze

03-juice-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_309593987-Magdalena-KarbowiakMagdalena Karbowiak/ShutterstockWant a juice? Here's some Kool-Aid. It's good for you. It's fat-free. This is just some of the worst diet advice nutritionists have heard.

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The satisfying click of a typewriter

04-typewriter-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_661317670-Linz-GutsellLinz Gutsell/ShutterstockClick, click, click... chiiiiiing! Modern keyboards—especially tiny pretend ones on touch screens—can never compare to the tactile joy of banging out your novel (literally and figuratively).

Flipping through a card catalog

05-card-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_427203040-Andrey_KuzminAndrey Kuzmin/ShutterstockFinding a book in the library used to require a trip to a huge file filled with rows of cards. You had to decipher their beautiful but strange system, golf pencil clenched tightly between your teeth, write it down, and then remember the Dewey Decimal System. But your reward (the latest book in The Babysitter's Club series?) was so worth it! For more modern tips check out these 13 things librarians won't tell you.

Dialing zero on a rotary phone

06-rotary-phone-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_676012882-Sanit-RatsameephotSanit Ratsameephot/ShutterstockImagine: Operators used to be people, not automated voices! All you had to do to summon one of the magical helpful genies was to whip your finger around the telephone dial. (And then listen happily to the beautiful whir.)

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Waiting two weeks to see if you got a good picture

07-pictures-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_366653684-Vasilyev-AlexandrVasilyev Alexandr/ShutterstockWith endless takes, it's no wonder youngsters today take so many gorgeous selfies. As long as you have the patience—and the right photo-editing tools—anyone can be a master photographer. Back in the day you had to line up your shot through an itty bitty plastic square, press the button and just pray that in two weeks when your film was developed you caught something good. (And don't forget to wind the film before your next shot!) Here are all the tricks you need to look better in photos.

And then the joy of one-hour photo stores

08-photo-stores-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_367966754-IVASHstudioIVASHstudio/ShutterstockWhen you had to wait weeks to get back 24 (or, if you were rich, 32) pictures meant you had pretty much already forgotten the vacation they memorialized. But while it was fun being surprised by memories and entertained by weird shots, the day that one-hour photo services were invented was the best day of your life.

"Smoking" bubblegum cigars

09-bubblegum-cigars-via-amazon.com These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as HeckCourtesy amazon.comAdults used to think it was cute when little kids pretended to smoke or chew with fake bubblegum tobacco products. Then we learned about lung cancer. Yeah, maybe it's best this one went away.

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"Be kind, please rewind!"

10-rewind-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_247330780-Michal-ChmurskiMichal Chmurski/ShutterstockSome video stores used fines to remind you to rewind the VHS tapes before you returned them while others just guilted you into being a good renter with their cheery stickers. Either way, it meant you spent endless hours (fine: minutes) jamming the rewind button hoping to make it go faster.

The horror of an unspooled cassette

11-casette-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_660811855-Honeybee49Honeybee49/ShutterstockThere was nothing more horrifying than putting your favorite cassette tape into the player, punching play, and hearing the garbled screech of the machine eating it. If you were very careful—and very patient—you could pull it out and careful tape it back together before winding it back up with a pencil. But while you may not have to worry about this problem anymore, there are still plenty of opportunities to break things. Use this handy guide: 50 common mistakes and how to fix them.

Looking up information in an encyclopedia

12-encyclopedia-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_541864777-Rania-alhamedRania alhamed/ShutterstockSchool children with a report due on Monday often spent the weekend with a table full of open encyclopedias. Upside: They were more accurate than Wikipedia. Downside: You only got one measly paragraph on the Boer Wars to work with and it was the exact same one everyone else was using. Or you gave up and just used the giant volumes to hold up your blanket fort.

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Having at least 20 phone numbers memorized

13-phone-numbers-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_278141306--Helmut-SeisenbergerHelmut Seisenberger/ShutterstockDo you know your best friend's phone number? Your mother's? Your own?? These days all you have to know is the name and your smart phone does all the hard work for you but a generation ago kids were drilled daily on important numbers. Grandma's phone was considered as important as the nuclear codes and you practiced until you knew them all by heart. Want to improve your memory now? Try these 14 old-school ways to remember stuff.

Cranking up the car window as fast as you could when it started to rain

14-car-window-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_416896468-jarabee123jarabee123/ShutterstockHow fast could you use the crank to manually roll your window up? Depended on how fast the storm was coming in (or how fast your brother was running for the front seat).

Pouring over mail order catalogs

15-catalogs-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_386643544-BohbehBohbeh/ShutterstockAmazon and other online stores are the Tinder of shopping—fast, cheap, and instantly gratifying. Mail-order catalogs, on the other hand, were a serious commitment. You had to decide exactly what you wanted, make sure you wrote all the item numbers correctly, calculated the correct total, tax, and postage, and then you sent off your hard-earned money in an envelope and hoped for the best (in six to eight weeks).

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The art of a well-dictated voice mail

16-voice-mail-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_2414599-Pablo-EderPablo Eder/ShutterstockEver hear a Millennial leave a voice mail? Probably not because most of them hate them with a fiery passion. Leaving a well-crafted, coherent, informative, and non-rambling voice message is a dying art.

How to fix a CD with your breath

17-cd-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_245265322-Early-SpringEarly Spring/ShutterstockA scratched CD was a worthless CD but ingenious teens didn't give up if their favorite album got a little banged up (probably because they forgot to put it in their giant protective CD binders). A blast of moist breath and a rub on your shirt was often all it needed.

Picking out a bag of penny candy

18-candy-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_29248744-Israel-MckeeIsrael Mckee/ShutterstockGumdrops, jelly beans, taffies, chocolate-covered peanuts, sour cherries, licorice whips, lemon drops, and starlight mints were just a few of the hundreds of confections you could find on the wall of plastic bins at the store. And the best part? Each cost exactly one cent. Spending a quarter could keep you entertained for an hour. Feeling nostalgic? Use these recipes to make your own homemade candies.

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Stringing the phone cord under your door so you could have privacy

19-phone-cord-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_390859861-Konstantin-71Konstantin 71/ShutterstockLong, coiled cords stretched under doorways, and around corners were often the best way to spot teenage girls in the wild. These days kids can talk anywhere they want or text if they can't talk. Before, you had to be a structural engineer just to get a little privacy.

Staring at the wall of videos in Blockbuster for hours every Friday night

20-blockbuster-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck-3438519c-John-Linton-PhotographyShutterstockJohn Linton Photography/Shutterstock...only to discover the one you picked was all rented out and you'd have to start the arduous process all over again. These days, thanks to the infinite digital offerings, it's even harder to decide what to watch. How about starting with one of the top 100 funniest movies of all time?

Flying off the merry-go-round

21-merry-go-round-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_136771886-Dmitrij-SkorobogatovDmitrij Skorobogatov/ShutterstockWhen was the last time you saw an honest-to-goodness merry-go-round on a playground? They're gone, along with metal slides, concrete pads, tall climbing structures, and all of the other beloved injury-causing equipment—like these five playground dangers to avoid. It's probably better this way but seriously how fun was it to spin until your fingers slipped off the bars and you went soaring? (At least until you hit the pavement, because soft-surface playgrounds hadn't been invented yet.)

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America's Funniest Home Videos was life

22-AFV-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_658420798-RomrodphotoRomrodphoto/ShutterstockSpecifically AFV was your life, probably because at least one of your relatives had sent in that video of you blowing out your fifth birthday candles so hard you passed out in the cake. These days funny home videos are still funny but they're a lot easier to come by thanks to that little thing called YouTube.

Looking up your neighbor's number in the phone book

23-phone-book-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_2829869-Stephen-VanHornStephen VanHorn/ShutterstockNot only could you find any of your neighbor's numbers in the phone book but you also knew the difference between the white and the yellow pages. We were all alphabet ninjas.

Prank-calling your crush

24-prank-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_156943784-savageultralightsavageultralight/ShutterstockIn the days before caller ID or ever *69, you could make any phone call you liked with impunity—and boy did you. How many times did you call Josh, giggle, and then hang up in eight grade? (Hint: It's a little trickier but there are still ways to be anonymous. Try this hack to hide your number when you call.)

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Balancing your checkbook

25-check-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_569695963-welcomiawelcomia/ShutterstockIf you get cranky waiting for the chip reader to authorize your credit card, just remember the days when people had to write out checks, tear them carefully out of the book, and then subtract them from the running total in the register in the back. If you were really hip you had a fancy checkbook cover. (Budgeting not your strength? Use these 9 steps to create a budget you'll actually stick to.)

Listening to an entire music album

26-album-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_581273125-Lenscap-PhotographyLenscap Photography/ShutterstockPeople used to get excited when a favorite artist dropped a new album—not just for the one song on heavy rotation on the radio but also for all the undiscovered gems they would find. Some artists even hid bonus tracks for the truly devoted. Now everyone's playlist is a giant mixtape.

Writing down directions

27-directions-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_532105168-xermarkxermark/ShutterstockFirst there was the map. Then there was your dad. Next came Mapquest. And then, glorious day, GPS systems and Google Maps on phones. Gone are the days of trying to find north and/or decipher your terrible handwriting while you beg a gas-station attendant to save your lost butt.

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The delight of pouring a toy into your cereal bowl

28-cereal-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_221259130-Phonlamai-PhotoPhonlamai Photo/ShutterstockEating cereal was fine and all but the toy was the real draw for many previous generations of kids. And they were good toys! Sticker books, matchbox cars, small dolls—basically anything you could cover in plastic and shove in a box was fair game. Are you a Millennial? Here are the ten scents that will instantly transport you to your childhood.

Singing along with the modem tones

29-modem-These 29 Things 2000s Kids Will Never Understand Will Make You Feel Old as Heck_269403968-KornKorn/ShutterstockBeeeeeep....boooooop... SCREEEEEECH. Call it the meditation on a modem: Sitting blank-faced in front of your computer, immobile, humming along with the modem as it connected you to the world. That is, until your dumb brother picked up the phone line. Not sure exactly what a modem is? Find out this and 20 other tech words you need to know.

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