Pre Modern Internet Homework

You may have heard this week that the internet as we know it today got its start 25 years ago.

Does that make you feel old, it makes me feel old because while it may be 25 yrs old I sure as heck was not using it on a regular basis till the 2000’s.

cake making 1999

me and my best friend attempting to make a layered cake circa 1999

Now in 1999 I was in 8th grade and our teachers announced we would be doing a worlds fair. We were meant to pair up with another student and would be giving a country at random then we were to research said country and do a booth.

My best friend and I, we are actually still best friends, immediately paired up and eagerly awaited the country we were to get.

Then we got Luxembourg.

Umm yeah we had no clue about Luxembourg and gave the side eye to a few kids that got countries like Canada and Ireland.

Being more into music and vintage clothes than much else at that time we had no real idea what you could or could not do on “the internet’ which is how we thought of it at the time.

Needless to say our project planning time was spent more on what cool dresses we could wear than anything remotely to do with actual Luxembourg.

We did have a sheet of questions that needed to be answered to pass though and we set about answering them with some trusty Funk and Wagnalls encyclopedias.

Then we got to a question the encyclopedia could not answer for us: “How much does it cost to fly to your country and how long will it take?”

Crickets all around

I then got a brilliant idea, I would call 411 and ask for the number to LAX. Once I had that I would ask for an airline that flew to Luxembourg and pretend I was going to buy a plane ticket.

Which is exactly what we did.

I have no idea what airline I ended up talking to but it went like this:

Airline worker – How can I help you

Me trying to sound as old as I could – Yes, I would like to fly to Luxembourg please

Airline worker – Ok and when would you like to go

Me frantically trying to find a calendar – Ummm on Monday (which was two days away I think)

Airline worker – Ok and when would you like to return

Me thinking she was asking way too many questions and trying to think how long people normally went to Europe for and deciding two weeks seemed right – Saying date that was two weeks away and asking how long it would take for the flight

Airline worker – It will take ______ time and will cost ______ amount

Me furiously writing information down

Then I just hung up.

I panicked and did not want the lady to get mad so I totally just hung up the phone.

And that my friends is why kids of today have it so easy with their homework.

Happy Birthday Internet


18 thoughts on “Pre Modern Internet Homework

  1. Haha that’s awesome! I kinda miss the days without the Internet. It’d be a fun experiment to have kids/teenagers today to do a project without being able to go online. Not sure how it could be regulated, but I wonder if they’d know how to use an encyclopedia or search for things in an acutual library.

  2. Haha – I was ten/eleven when it all started, and I remember it well. My sister, being the tech head she is, had an internet connection back then, and we did a grand unveiling to the grandparents – who were most unimpressed!

  3. Omg, I love this!! Look at all those problem solving skills we learned, and kids nowadays won’t.
    The library was my go-to place for every research, and sometimes it would take hours to find all the books with the right information.
    Gosh, how I love the Internet!

  4. Genius. I remember going to the library and getting out every book on a subject, and scanning the encyclopedia for good measure. Thank goodness by the time I went to uni (1999) they had online academic archives!

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