I’m new to the hashtag game. Thankfully, Jimmy Fallon, Justin Timberlake and Questlove helped explain things to me with their Late Night video. But even so, I was a bit confused when I stumbled across #tbt on Instagram a few months earlier. Thankfully, I know how to use Google and within a millisecond I was learning all about “Throwback Thursday.” Urban Dictionary, as always, was a vital source of useful information.
Basically, Throwback Thursday is all about walking down memory lane. Of course, in our digital age of filtered photographs and highly edited Facebook pages (only posts about how your children are all in Honor Society, your husband just took you for the most amazing dinner and look at the replicas of the Eiffel Tower you made from organic fondant for your daughter’s French club), #tbt is necessarily the most authentic reflection of our past. I mean, I’m happy to post an awkward photo from elementary or middle school (hello crooked bangs, knobby knees, Sally Jesse Rafael glasses and braces), but I’m not going to put anything that’s too close to the present where I’m not represented in a completely flattering way.
That said, it has been fun looking at old photographs. My mother swears I insisted on my large red frames, but they look like some form of cruel and unusual punishment 25 years in the future. And Jncos? I really wish I could build a hot tub time machine and have a long talk with my 15 year old self (top of the list: “Wear your retainer.”). It’s also frightening to think how quickly time has passed and yet, despite that passage of time, my brother still manages to ruin nearly every family photograph by making a face. And one day these current family pics may make it to #tbt Instagram (if it still exists) of the future.