Okay, Kara, I just grabbed this out of the comments, because it is awesome:
I was born in 1987. I narrowly missed the majority of what was really going on in the ’90s. I was influenced by it, but I was a kid. It didn’t have the same effect on me as it would have if I would’ve been 14-18 years old instead of 6-10.
I do remember being 7 years old and watching Nirvana’s MTV Unplugged show and sobbing because Kurt Cobain had just introduced me to the act/concept of suicide. I remember singing along with “All Apologies” and having no idea what it meant but being devastated by it. I remember thinking things like, “Why is the world so sad that some people do that?”
That is what most ’90s memories are like for me. Not intellectually “getting it,” but viscerally feeling it. Knowing that something is beautiful, or sad, or fucked up and not understanding why. Watching teenagers and adults do things and make things that affected me and trying to understand why.
P.S. Thanks early ’90s Madonna, for making me viscerally feel my queerness. I didn’t know exactly what was going on, I just knew Madonna was <b>really</b> pretty and I found myself kissing the TV set and dressing like her and sobbing because my mom wouldn’t let me get her <i>Sex</i> book for Christmas.