Town Scout Blog

Feel Good Friday: Back to School, Old School Edition

Happy Friday, y’all!  I’ve missed you!

I took a break from Feel Good Friday last week to help our younger daughter move in to college.  A rented minivan, more than a few hours on the road, and several crates of albums, boxes of books, and stacks of photos later, she’s all moved in and already through her first week of classes.  I can’t believe it’s been a week since I was hugging her goodbye–it seems like yesterday that we were teaching her how to drive!  Times they are a changin’ . . .

But some things never do.  Dorm rooms, shared bathrooms, roommates and hallmates, dinner in the dining hall, sunny afternoons on the lawn.   Sure, some things are different–the dorms are air conditioned (!!) and the dining hall is now a food court–but the essentials are the same.  Tailgating before football games, silly nights out, and friends for a lifetime.

Take all of that, add in a few days of being back in a beautiful Virginia college town, and you can see why I have been suffering from a serious case of nostalgia since last week.  Dave Matthews and Matthew Sweet have been on permanent rotation, my old J. Crew barn jacket has come out of storage, and I’ve had a week-long craving for fro-yo and dominos.


How many days have I spent on this lawn? Too many to count.

Which is all a long way of saying that this week’s Feel Good Friday is in honor of those who are starting their college days and those for whom college is but a distant, somewhat-hazy memory.  So sit back, open a Nattie Light, and enjoy.


This week, the playlist is going old school.  As in, went-to-college-in-the-90s old school.  As in, playlists used to be called Mix Tapes and you spent hours with your dual-cassette recorder, stopping and starting and splicing to create the perfect mix of songs to convey all of your deeply felt emotions.  It was an art form.

I love a good mix tape, but I also love the fact that I can whip up a weekly playlist on Spotify without losing hours of my life.  This week, I crowd-sourced the lineup by polling some girlfriends for the first song that came to mind when they thought of our college days.  I haven’t heard Rusted Root mentioned that many times since 1994.  Full disclosure:  we went to school in the mid-90s at a small school in Virginia.  We REALLY liked Dave Matthews.  And also Coolio.  And maybe the entire Pulp Fiction soundtrack.  We weren’t too original, but we did have fun.

Are you ready for a rewind?  Put earmuffs on the kids and prepare for a Fantastic Voyage with this week’s playlist:  90s Mix Tape.

mix tapes

Raise your hand if you have a box of these somewhere . . .  And, yes, that’s a hand-made mix-tape cover featuring a pink poodle.  #skillz


Things to Feel Good About This Week

Topping that list:  Social Media Did Not Exist in the 90s.   Thank the Lord above that my college days were not captured in a readily uploadable form.  Sure, we had photos posted to a wall, but it was an actual wall and those photos were called Party Pics.  After you lost your eyesight searching for photos of you and your best friends dressed as who-knows-what, you ordered photos, and they were mailed to you.  Not emailed.  MAILED.  Sure, I have a stack of embarrassing photos of myself . . . and they are hidden in a box in my parents’ attic never to see the light of day.  Long live the Party Pic!!

Another thing to feel good about:  I learned from my mistakes.  Apparently, the 90s are in again.  If you spent the mid-90s dressed as I did, this will come as quite a shock.  Did you ever think the fashion trifecta of birkenstocks, cut-offs, and flannel shirts would ever reappear?  Neither did I.  Honestly, when I look back on my college days, I wonder how I managed to talk anyone into going with me to all those date functions when my wardrobe consisted largely of thrift-store Levi’s, hiking boots, and over-sized t-shirts.  Here’s where the happy part comes in:  I know better now.  With age, comes wisdom.  At least when it comes to the appropriate times to wear flannel.

And, finally, this:

Matthew McConaughey’s screen debut.  Alright, alright, alright . . .

Stay tuned for next week’s #FGF with some road trip tunes just in time for Labor Day!

xo, jen

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