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be cool man

19 things you did as a teenager to seem 'cool'

From rolling up your school skirt to forcing your hair to part in the middle.

AS A TEENAGER, you have one concern.  Being cool.  It’s all that matters, it’s all you think about, and it’s certainly all you care about.

Your parents don’t care and they certainly don’t understand the things you do to fulfil whatever ‘cool’ brief has been designed by your generation, hence the arguments arguments associated with adolescence.

Lest you are losing contact with that innate desire for coolness, here is a swift reminder of 19 things you did as a teenager to make you think you were cool.

Wore snappy tracksuit bottoms

Even though they were hideous, and you knew someone was going to pull all the snaps open.


Yahoo Groups

Bring your lunch to school in a fancy bag

So that everyone would know you shopped there of course!  No matter if you’d bought the cheapest thing in the shop.


Roll your school uniform’s skirt up as much as you could get away with it

If you were fancy you might even whip out some Wonderweb.

See also:  Ripping holes in your jumper cuffs/bunching your socks around your ankles/refusing to tuck your shirt in.


Second from the left is definitely not regulation length.  Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland

Wearing a denim jacket to school

Even though you knew you’d get into trouble because it wasn’t uniform.



Used a massive amount of hair product

Maybe you were going for the Ross from Friends wet look?


EMPICS Entertainment

Wore UFO parachute pants

You can still buy them y’know.



Worked hard to learn all the words to a tricky song

Usually by fast-forwarding and rewinding a cassette you recorded from the radio a hundred times.  Songs like Bad Touch, Let’s Talk About Sex and Gangsta’s Paradise were very popular for this carry on.

(See also, making up dances/learning dances to specific songs.)



Joined a band even though you had no discernible talent


Flickr/deanfotos66/Creative Commons

Got a hair wrap when you were on holidays

It had to be a foreign hair wrap though, if you got it in the nearest city it wasn’t cool.


Flickr/Liz Henry/Flickr

Pulling your hair back in a sleek tight ponytail

Then yanking two bits out from the front so they hung lankly either side of your face.

Melanie C has a lot to answer for in relation to this.


John Mather/EMPICS Entertainment

Forcing a centre part in your hair

Even if your hair didn’t grow that way.


Nick Tansley/EMPICS Entertainment



Flickr/mandyxclear/Creative Commons

Pretending to fancy people you didn’t fancy because all your friends did

Maybe Louise Nurding wasn’t your favourite member of Eternal!


AAD/EMPICS Entertainment

Wore your school bag on one shoulder

Even though it was always slipping off and one of your shoulders is slightly sloped now.

If you saw someone doing it these days you’d think they were a right eejit.


What an eejit.  Shutterstock

Wrote bands names on everything you owned

School bags, pencil cases, homework journals etc.  It didn’t really matter if you hadn’t actually heard the music.


Changed your name or the spelling

Having posters of the right famous people on your walls

Didn’t matter if you didn’t know who they actually were (e.g. Paul Nicholls).



Attempted to dye your hair at home

Often using things other than hair dye (markers would do) or packets of hair dye from the chemist which cost £2.


via Ebay

Pretending you’d kissed more people than you had

By the by, all the photos available on the internet of teens kissing paint a much more romantic picture than the reality.



Cutting slits in your jeans so they’d cover your shoes

Never mind that every time it rained you were saturated to the hip.


Via Shopbop

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