RANKED! The Best Decades to Live In When You’re 25, Broke, And Single
Guys, living in 2019 can be hard. Just the phrase “cost of living” is a telltale sign that existence has been commodified. And unfortunately, the numbers show that ours is the first generation in 100 years to be worse off than our parents. When modern times start to feel depressingly complex, it’s time to start looking for an escape route. Enter: time travel. Time travel is the tourism of the future. And scientists say the only thing needed to build a time machine is a gadget that can harness all the energy in the universe. Sounds pretty doable. So doable, in fact, that there will probably be a time machine before the Cubs win another pennant. So if you happen to be young, broke, and looking for a change of scenery, here are the best decades we recommend moving to right now.
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Back to the future: RANKED! The 20 Biggest Changes to Modern Life in the Last 20 Years
8. Year Zero
Indoor plumbing had just been invented (even though it was only available on one toilet) and there were loads of great boulders for folks to pick up. Rome was at the height of its powers and Jesus would soon be roaming around looking for BFFs. Your parents wouldn't be disappointed in you for being unemployed, since most jobs paid in salt (if at all). And trees smelled really, really fresh. So much of the world was ready to be discovered. Wizards probably still existed. And we're going to go out on a limb here and say animals could talk.
7. The 1590s
The 1590s had a vibe. People only lived until about the age of 30, so 25 was already a life well-lived. You could get great seats to a new Shakespeare play for a penny. And land in America was cheap as hell. Also, there was nothing to do but have sex all the time. At least we’re pretty sure we read that in a history book once. Have sex and drink mead.
6. The 2000s
Kind of like now, without Twitter and the stark realities of an existential crisis, the aughts had some pretty great things going. The sweet naivety of the decade not-so-long-ago made everything a little Scooby-Doo-ish, like nothing could ever really go wrong. At least until the planes hit. Life was lived on credit and we borrowed like there was no tomorrow. Pop music was garbage, but everyone knew it. "Dot com" was a buzzword and it felt electric. Rave culture was still fun. And it was the first time you could unequivocally say you were smarter than the president. Hell, yeah.
5. The 1920s
Well, WWI had just destroyed half of Europe and the stock market was about to crash, so being broke was no big deal. It was a simple time when steak was steak and corn was corn. You could woo a lover with just a smile. You could drink yourself into a stupor and people would kindly carry you to the street. You could even loiter around the bus station and no one would bother you (except the police who would beat you with batons and kick you in the ribs). Speakeasies weren't just some novelty throwback. You could hop a train and travel the country. Tent cities were popping up all over the place. And everyone lived in abject poverty, except the top 1 percent. Actually, that last part sounds a lot like today.
4. The 1960s
Not only was milk a nickel, but tickets to the best concerts in history were $1. You could buy a house on minimum wage. And get a college education for a few weeks' worth of wages. America became the wealthiest nation and no front lawn ever went unwatered. For the first time ever, young people took over the world. LSD was invented. Hitchhiking was still fun. Rock 'n' roll was actually fresh. And dancing was so bad, anyone could do it.
3. The 1970s
The 1970s was like the perfect party you throw where everyone gets drunk, gets laid, and wakes up hung over. Only the waking up part didn’t happen until the '80s and the hangover part…well that’s still happening. But it took all the freewheeling energy of the '60s and totally removed any sense of consequence or responsibility. Pants got tighter. Hair got bigger. Avocado green was an acceptable hue of carpet. Nixon was out. Cocaine was in. Bartering was an acceptable form of payment. And for a brief moment, society ran amok.
2. The 1980s
Life sucked, but it was OK. In fact, the crappiness of existence was a thing of beauty. A thing to behold and celebrate. And the option to be completely materialistic still came with no strings attached. It felt good to spend Saturdays at the mall. To get a new TV. To buy a new wardrobe. New shoes. New sunglasses. A new car. Every product was improving. Better aspirin. Better coffee makers. Better gum. Crime was at an all-time high, but so was purchasing power. The world was fast-paced and intoxicating. And it was in the palm of your hands, awaiting your next command.
1. The 1990s
What do you get when the most profound century of the past 2,000 years gets senioritis? The '90s. Literally, the biggest songs on the radio were about being broke and sleeping on other peoples' couches. Plus, it was the golden age of after-school snacks. Intellectualism was in. Counterculture was in. Alternative living was in. All the dusty old ideas were being replaced and new ideas felt vital. Young rebels were carving out a new world. Hope was in the air. It was the last decade when America was truly carefree. And you could make a fortune on tech stocks.