Missing It

A brief list of things that I missed because I was on a mission from 1994-1996:

* Steve Young (and the 49ers) winning the Superbowl.

* The Atlanta Braves winning the World Series (this has made me indifferent to baseball, when I used to be passionate about the Braves)

* The University of Florida football team becoming National Champions under Steve Spurrier (note: these were my three favorite sports franchises at the time of my mission)

* The Arrival of Jim Carrey (I missed the first Ace Ventura movie, Dumb and Dumber, and the Mask)

* The Death of Grunge Music (I heard Nevermind, Ten, a couple more singles and that’s about it)

* The entire O.J. Simpson trial (I heard about the day he was chased and the day he was acquitted, nothing else)

* Laserblast *snif*

For a while, when I got home I felt a real need to catch up on pop culture. I watched Apollo 13 and Forrest Gump in one sitting. But some holes got filled in whether I investigated them or not. I now know who Judge Ito and Kato Kaelin are. However, when I’ve watched the early Jim Carrey stuff, it’s never caught on. Maybe you had to see it with friends in a theater for it to make an indelible impression.

So, what did you miss? Do you feel the lack? How did you catch up?


  1. For my mission, I missed disco. I don’t think I really need to say anything else.

  2. I missed Independence Day, the Atlanta Olympics, the release of OK Computer, and The English Patient.

    I only caught up on The English Patient (meh) and OK Computer (still a favorite).

  3. I missed September 11th.

  4. Nixon’s resignation (but I did see (and could read) the headline in the Yomiuri Shinbun and shouted for joy).

    The Patty Hearst kidnapping.

    A bunch of Ted Bundy’s murders in Utah.

    Pop culture? I still don’t know.

  5. I think I posted something similar a few years back on 9M. My brother had gotten home from his mission and upon hearing some celeb gossip asked, “Who’s Paris Hilton?”

    Lucky bastard.

    As far as movies go, I missed Titanic and the Matrix.

    The biggest thing for to miss was the ’98 MLB Home Run race between McGwire and Sosa. I distinctly remember checking the Guatemalan newspaper everyday that summer to get an update.

    Missing 9/11 would be weird.

  6. I was Dec. 95 to Dec. 97.

    Grunge died?

    You are lucky to have missed the OJ trial.

    The Orioles went to the baseball playoffs when I was on my mission. This is something that have not done since I started following baseball….except while on my mission. While my companion assured me that we could just watch it if the went to the Series…they didn’t…and never will.

  7. I missed Terminator 2, the election of Bill Clinton, and Hurricane Andrew. I could have lived just fine without two of them.

  8. I missed the bombing of the Murrah Building. I remember staring through a storefront window looking at a tv that was playing footage, but not having any audio.

  9. Kevin Barney says:

    I missed disco, too. But in my case, I really did miss it. Not that I really liked disco per se all that much, but I loved dancing. I was really annoyed when Saturday Night Fever came out, and I couldn’t go to see. Well, not right away, anyway. If any of you happened to see a solitary figure slip into the late show in a Denver theater in the late 70s, that wasn’t me…

  10. I missed 9/11 too. It was strange that a taxi driver had to tell me about it. It wasn’t for a few weeks that I could sneak a peak on CNN International at a restaurant that I could finally see what it looked like.

    I also missed the rise of cell phones. People had them before I left but they were like Zach Morris cell phones. Where I got home people were doing this thing called “texting”.

  11. I’ll not tell the dates of my mission but……
    Dan Cooper the highjacker
    XXth Olympiad
    Superbowls VI & VII
    Nixon trip to China
    End of the Vietnam conflict
    Death of LBJ
    Wounded Knee
    Pink Floyd’s ‘The Dark Side of the Moon’

  12. I also missed Princess Diana’s death.

  13. I missed the 1996 Presidential campaign and didn’t get my stuff together in time to vote, even though it was my first opportunity to vote in a Presidential campaign.

  14. Last Lemming says:

    Bert Lance scandal/Panama Canal debate (I know, only a political junkie would care)
    Vikings lose their fourth Super Bowl (just as well I missed it)
    Roots–this one hurt because I had read an early-release chapter before I left
    Star Wars/Close Encounters
    Hotel California/Boston/Rumours

    Things I was asked about, but couldn’t really respond to:
    * the Gary Gilmore execution–we got lots of questions about it, but I had never heard of him
    * the Moluccan terrorist incident–“No, we’re Mormonen not Moluccan.”
    Things I was never asked about and didn’t find out about until decades later
    * the Joyce McKinney incident

  15. It would appear that I missed the same things esodhiambo missed.

  16. John Mansfield says:

    I only thing I missed was my mother’s funeral. Other than that, it was surprising how much I felt aware of, like reading obituaries for Yul Brynner and Orson Welles or news articles about the U.S. bombing Libya or Wole Soyinka receiving the Nobel literature prize, or hearing about the Challenger launch failure and going to a TV to see a replay. The night I sat down to watch live boxing matches broadcast from an open air ring behind Caesars Palace was a particularly acute experience; sometime between the undercard bouts and the main event between Marvin Hagler and John Mugabi, the broadcasters showed me the sun setting behind Mt. Charleston. To see something so familiar as it was happenning seven thousand miles away produced unanticipated longing.

  17. It’s not so much what I missed, but what I tried desperately to miss…

    For instance, whenever I went into a store or a restaurant or any public place where music was playing, I’d hear Counting Crows version of “Big Yellow Taxi”. Members and investigators managed to quote both “Bruce Almighty” and “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” to me in their entirety. And really, those three things sum up pop-culture for me from July 2002 to January 2004. I’m sure I missed something dealing with Paris Hilton, et al but I’ve never cared enough to find out.

    I left post 9/11, but couldn’t really escape the aftermath; I went to Canada, and technically missed the invasion of Iraq and the downfall of Saddam Hussein, but there were enough protests about the US invasion of Iraq that we had to be very much aware of it–we were instructed not to announce that we were Americans, for instance.

  18. Invasion of Afghanistan (Pres. Hinckley’s comments in GC on the beginning of the war came in my second weekend in the MTC)
    Invasion of Iraq
    Barry Bonds breaking the home run record
    Anthrax attacks
    2002 SLC Olympics (though all the members in Mexico watched the opening ceremonies…so did we)
    Space Shuttle Columbia crash
    Martha Stewart going to prison
    Lord of the Rings movies
    Matrix sequels
    First Harry Potter movies

  19. I missed the rise of the iPod and the demise of the floppy disk. Technically, I suppose I missed the release of The Passion of the Christ. (I say technically because although I didn’t have the opportunity to see it, it was definitely something that people discussed as the movie came out, and I was quite aware of it. We gave away a lot of copies of The Lamb of God during that time as a result.)

  20. Oh, and the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal. Reading the Starr Report is Spanish was a great language lesson.

    And someone mentioned cell phones. That’s a good one. I remember sitting in the Atlanta airport on my way home and everyone around me was either talking on a cell phone or on a laptop. Really weird.

  21. One thing I missed, really missed, meaning that it happened while I was on my mission and I didn’t become aware of it for many years later, was the murder of Jeffrey Dahmer. I had been keenly aware of Dahmer’s murders, having been in high school in Wisconsin during the time of his trial. But I didn’t know that he was subsequently killed by a fellow inmate. And I’ll confess, even though I’m firmly against murder, this one didn’t grieve me especially.

    Also, when I returned I asked my dad if I’d missed any good movies. He said, “No, not really. Wait, there was one.” So we drove to the video store and rented Tommy Boy.

  22. Looks Like I missed the same things as AHLDuke.

    I would add the rise of Emo. When I left I was sure that Grunge was going to make a resurgence with bands like Tantric, Cold, Creed, Nickelback (not that I like Creed or Nickelback. . . ), Default, Shinedown, etc. gaining in popularity. Needless to say I was a little confused to come home and try to understand My Chemical Romance. In time I learned to love them.

    I didn’t so much MISS the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, as I missed being in the US for them. But no worries, I got my own fun experiences as random people would come up to me and say “You tell your daddy Bush that he’s going to lead us to the Third World War” and little kids would chant “Osama” as we walked by. Maybe I experienced the invasions even more than I would have had I stayed in the US!

    I also missed the Vin Diesel movie XXX. Rest assured, I saw it when I got home. Epic.

  23. I served the same time as the OP, and remember being confused when I got home and everyone was talking about “electronic mail.”

  24. iguacufalls says:

    The first Batman movie
    Fall of the Berlin Wall
    World Series Earthquake in the Bay area
    My parents bought a 386 computer and a Laserjet printer while I was away, and were SO excited to be able to send letters in different sized fonts.

  25. I missed the Clarence Thomas hearings. (I was in the MTC).


  26. Berlin Wall coming down / Opening of Eastern Europe
    Milli Vanilli

  27. Serving from 78-80 in the highlands of Guatemala seemed like we were completely isolated from the world. All that mattered was in front of us each day. This was how those in Guate lived and, hence, how we lived. Upon returning home, I realized that I had missed:
    1. The Larry Bird/Magic Johnson NCAA final (still haunts me every March)
    2. Disco

  28. Other things that happened while I was on my mission:

    The popularization of the Internet

    The Oklahoma City Bombing (I learned the Russian word for explosion talking to the mission driver)

  29. I was in a Washington DC suburb when the first Gulf War broke out. My landlord was watching missile footage on CNN, jumping up and down yelling “My program worked! My program worked!” Then he let us know that he’d been one of the guys responsible for missiles that could figure out where they were and guide themselves to a two-foot target.

    We went into DC for our next Preparation Day and went to the Mall, the Capitol, and the Smithsonians. Very eerie. Armed soldiers with flak vests and machine guns were patrolling the food court at Union Station. They were in the process of installing security checkpoints near the Senate buildings and at the Capitol. The town itself seemed almost abandoned, like something out of a Stephen King novel. Everything was empty except for armed guards, Capitol police on high alert, and people acting like they were in a hurry to get where they were going.

    So, in some respects I felt like I missed it, but in other ways I was right in the middle of it all, more so than if I’d been at home on the farm.

  30. the byu women’s volleyball team went to the final four…that would have been my senior year, but I was on a mission.

    the month after I flew home South africa had their first real elections and elected nelson Mandela.

  31. I think Michael’s (no 29) comment resonated with me. “So, in some respects I felt like I missed it, but in other ways I was right in the middle of it all,”

    I think this is how I feel about a lot of it. There were somethings that I missed, and felt like there were gaps.
    – Scotland creating its own Parliament
    – Seige of Japanese embassy in Parliament
    – Atlanta Olympics
    – Start of the Internet
    – Men in Black
    – Why Titanic was so cool

    But I was aware of some of the broader social trends
    – Spice Girls
    – Hollyfield’s ear
    – Princess Di’s death
    – 11/24 stock market crash
    – Tobacco Settlement
    – Steve Jobs back at Apple
    – jock jams, etc
    – Dunblane massacre
    – Bomb at Atlanta Olympics
    – That Titanic was massive.

    Having served in the US these massive things seeped through the filters. People would talk, I saw the newspaper headlines, on all the tvs/radios. And as I wasn’t focused on my more narrow range of interests, musically, politically, etc, these more massive things filtered through.

  32. I missed the collapse of state communism in Eastern Europe, most particularly the fall of the Berlin Wall. The most important political event in Western civilization since World War II, and I missed it. But Norbert didn’t–he was on his mission the same time I was, but he was in Europe, and he wasn’t a rule keeper. Lucky bastard.

    I also missed the Tiananmen Square massacre, though that was happening just across the Yellow Sea from me in China. I had a friend from the MTC who was serving the same time I was in Hong Kong. There were massive protests there, with everyone following the news out of Beijing hourly on big screen televisions, and he saw it all. Lucky bastard.

  33. I missed BOTH the Beijing and Vancouver Olympics. I missed a temple dedication in my hometown TWO days before I got home. I missed Batman the Dark Knight.

  34. Oh, and Avatar.

  35. I wished to God I had missed the Dirty Dancing soundtrack, but alas it seemed EVERY house in England was blasting it out their homes as I went about.

    Thanks to BBC Radio I did not miss U2’s New Year’s Eve concert from Dublin.

  36. #32 Our Mission President gave a compelling ZC talk about the guy and the tank at Tiananmen Square and we all looked on non-plussed. He then asked if we had seen the news and we answered no. He went on to explain the events and that is when it became a mission rule to read the paper on p-day.

  37. I missed the whole Clinton/Lewinsky deal including the impeachment, Lady Di, President Hinckley’s first appearance on Larry King Live, Titanic (my sister who was then in high school made sure I watched it soon after returning though), the rise of Bare Naked Ladies, and cell phones.

  38. Oh, to have been able to miss the rise of BareNaked Ladies. . . . I envy you.

  39. I worked in computer support before I left on my mission, and when I got back to my job after returning from Germany, the internet had entirely taken over the field. That was a surprise, and the learning curve was rather steep, since I was soon heavily involved with getting the BYU religion department on the internet at work and at home.

    I must confess to reading a lot of German newspaper headlines while waiting at bus and train stops, so that kept up a certain level of familiarity with world events, although the newspapers tended to be rather heavy on their coverage of whatever it is that was happening with Michael Jackson at the time.

    Oh — one event I missed was the devotional at BYU with President Hunter that was interrupted by a bomb threat.

  40. Same as many others:

    Most of the OJ trial (the verdict came down while I was flying to my mission).

    The rise of the internet (everything was http://www.something.com when I got back)

    The rise of SUVs (they weren’t called that before, were they?)

    Clinton’s reelection (Dole ran for President?)

    The Braves finally winning a WS (not that I cared … I still refuse to accept it)

    Happy Gilmore/Tommy Boy/Mission Impossible/The Rock/Ransom/Indepedence Day/…

    Popular music turning into a pile of hooey.

    The beginning of pharmaceutical ads being shown on TV (previously not permitted).

  41. I entered the MTC just after the Iran-Contra hearings began, and before I was able to watch Ollie North’s testimony.

    I “missed” Tiananmen square only in the sense that I was on my mission and obviously didn’t have a TV. The minute our landlord told us about it that morning I went out and bought the Guardian and The Independent and read all about it.

    Mostly what I missed was the US pop culture stuff, music and movies. I bought way too many newspapers to not be aware of most truly important news.

    BTW, the day of the Tiananmen Square massacre was also the day of the first free elections in Poland since communism controlled the country.

    I always thought that missionaries who weren’t aware of what was going on the in the world (at least in Britain) were self-righteous masochists who took pride in their ignorance.

    TStevens, would love to know who your MP was. Sounds like something my old MP would have done (RH Garff).

  42. Milli Vanilli’s heyday (I returned home just before the scandal broke)

    The 1989 summer movie season, which included the blockbusters “Batman” and “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”

    New Kids on the Block (a blessing, actually)

    The 1988 Election (took place while I was in the MTC)

    The premiere episode of The Simpsons

  43. I missed the whole “Achy Breaky Heart” thing THANK YOU!

    I also, however, missed “Smells Like Teen Spirit” NOOO!!!!!!

  44. Barefoot Mike says:

    – OK City Federal Building bombing

    – My hometown flooding

    – The Oregon Ducks making it to the Rose Bowl for the first time in like a million years

    – The rise of the Internet

    – Unabomber manifesto and eventual capture

  45. I missed the whole “burn a CD” terminology. When I got back, my younger brother informed me that he had burned all my CD’s while I was gone. I looked at him shocked trying to figure out why he would have done something like that–thinking they’d all gone up in smoke.

  46. Argentina South: 1971-1973
    * The end of flower-power. I asked a former girl friend upon my return what happened to the Movement. Her response: “Oh, everybody got jobs.” Huh? Jobs?
    * The U.S.’s transition from the 1960’s struggle for racial equality to the the 1970’s women’s movement.
    * Summer of 1973, as a new RM, I sauntered into a chemistry class at the local JC to get back into college studies. Armed with my chem-engineer father’s engineering slide rule, I was going to OWN that class. The guy sitting next to me was pushing these little buttons on a box that looked like a transistor radio. I still feel the sense of wonder that came over me as I realized what I was seeing; nobody had told me that calculators had been invented while I was gone.
    I received a 4-function calculator for Christmas that year. A “Summit,” made in Salt Lake City. 1 memory, square and square-root buttons. $100, in 1973 dollars, an amazing value then. HP had released the HP-35 and the HP-45 that year, the gold standard. Name was the price: HP-35, $350; HP-45, $450.
    * Richard Nixon’s renaissance as U.S. President in 1972. The man who lost the presidential race to JFK in 1960, lost the Calif. gubernatorial race to Pat Brown, and had sold used cars after that — Richard Nixon — now was our President.
    * Some pop-40 tunes. Every year for about a decade after my mission, a few songs would emerge from the radio that I hadn’t heard, to the amazement of whoever was around. This was foreshadowed while I was in the LTM (Knight-Mangum Hall): a few of us went up to the BYU Bookstore about 4 weeks into our stay there. KOVO Radio’s top-40 listing was next to the check-cashing counter. I was the leader by recognizing about 5 of them. Jarring.

  47. I did not serve a mission, but my Dad did, and he consequently missed a crucial time period in the rise of rock n’ roll. This unfortunately affected our relationship severely when I was a teen. There are just some things one has to be there to appreciate.

  48. I missed hurricane Katrina, except for a few Argentines telling me that it was proof of how wicked the US was….which was such a fun way to hear about a disaster in your homeland. And I missed the switch from floppy disks to flash drives (flash drives were new and cool when I left, disks were obsolete when I got back).

  49. Having returned from my mission and spent about a week binging on videos of movies I’d missed and video games I’d missed led me later to perceive the utter transience of pop culture. “Now I can see all this great stuff I missed….Wait, that was *it*?”

  50. manaen.

    Nixon was elected, the first time, in 1968. You may have repressed it. That would be understandable.

  51. John,

    Dude, you missed the biggest gamechanger of them all. Fox News started while you were away. Since then, we’ve had nothing but ugly trouble in this country. My mission was from 1995-1997, and the biggest difference I saw in America from before and after was that it was a meaner place. I attribute that directly to the rise of Fox News.

  52. I leave for the MTC in 8 days, and although I don’t know yet what I will miss, I have given a friend the responsibility of writing to me and telling me who wins this cycle of America’s Next Top Model.

    And that, brothers and sisters, is where my priorities lie.

  53. Here’s what I didn’t miss

    Cotton-Eye Joe and I Will Always Love You.

    Romanians could not have been more endeared to those two songs for those two years…

  54. Oh, and fun story: I worked as an EFY counselor this summer with another counselor who started his first session 2 days after he returned from his mission. He asked me about popular music (asking specifically what teenagers are into), and I told him about Justin Beiber. He thought I said Justin Beaver, and I may or may not have let him keep saying that.

  55. Shelley, I was mostly worried about who would win the New Hampshire Republic Primary in January of 1996 when I entered the MTC in December of 1995. Not all that different than America’s Next Top Model.

    I saw on a newspaper headline in a Westminster, CA Burger King that Pat Buchanan one. My exit from the GOP was push along that moment. It also made me glad that I had decide to go on a mission. I almost chose to pursue politics instead.

  56. I missed the following:

    1) The rise of Madonna, Wham! and the song We Are the World
    2) Tied to number 1 – the rise of MTV, back when they played music videos
    3) Three classic 80s movies – Back to the Future, The Breakfast Club, The Goonies.
    4) The Detroit Tigers winning the World Series against the San Diego Padres (the riots in Detroit following the win made that fact obvious, though)
    5) The bombings of Mark Hoffman in SLC (we were knocking doors when someone asked us why Mormons were bombing each other in Salt Lake. One of the only times I bought a newspaper to find out what was going on)
    6) The death of President Kimball (the other time I bought a newspaper)

    I still occasionally find odd gaps in my pop cultural history from the 84-85. Although by serving in Detroit, I became acquainted early with break dancing and early rap and hip-hop.

  57. I do not think I realize how much I missed until I play 1990s Trivial Pursuit. While, I still dominated, I have some major gaps.

  58. 46. A note about calculators in the 1970s. With their energy-hungry displays, battery life was measured in minutes and hours, not months. As insurance against battery expiration, I carried a log (logarithm) table in my calculator’s case. (Textbooks used to have base 10 log tables printed as appendices). My battery did fail during one final but my dance with logs and mantissas got me through unscathed. Wonder how many of today’s students could do that; are they learning mathematics or to be technicians that use mathematics?

  59. 50. Chris H
    1968, right! Now, I’ll spend the rest of the day wondering whether that error was the repression you generously suggested or another senior moment — or at least until I get distracted.

  60. hehe, well, I try to forget it and I wasn’t born until 1976.

  61. John Mansfield says:

    Manaen, this is for you. During my mission I picked up a thin paperback volume titled “Tabla de Logarithmos a Cinco Cifras” from a student who didn’t need it anymore and was going to throw it out. A year or so after I was back in school (so about 1988), my roommate had some trouble with his calculator so I lent him my HP-28S for the day. I forgot that I had an engineering exam that day, but I took my little log table paperback. I received high score on the exam, perhaps the only time in that class. I hope you enjoyed remembering with me the long-ago thrill of adding to multiply.

    Maybe some day I’ll tell you about the time I filled answer bubbles for the GRE using No. 3 pencils.

  62. Unfortunately for me, I missed the BYU library’s transition from an actual card catalog to a computer card catalog. Since I was unable to figure out how to get a search result with any results other than “0” or “1.3 million” and too embarrassed to ask for help, I spent my last 2 years of college rummaging blindly through the periodical section of the library in several desperate attempts at research papers.

  63. I remember this one district meeting on my mission where we asked a greenie what was “new” back home. The answer was friends. I was wondering when friendship hadn’t been popular, and why it was suddenly popular to have friends. It turns out the greenie was talking about some sort of obscure TV show …

    After that, another Elder shared a bag of M&M’s his parents had just sent him. We were all freaked out by the weird blue ones (except for the greenie – apparently there had been some sort of big contest or something.)

    About a year after I got home I finally realized that you couldn’t buy leaded gas any more.

  64. 46 & 61 the younger crowd is wondering how things were in the old days (pre1975).
    gold plates to the light blue BOM
    Film strips (beep)
    flannel boards to velcro
    the first set of new discussions
    LTM to MTC (KM Hall aka ‘The Pit’)
    full Pday to half Pdays
    Service projects?
    Quorums of the Seventy?
    SLC Mission?

  65. Former UK resident says:

    Kari – I was in your neck of the woods, three presidents later. Missed a lot, but got an up-close view of the UK both pre- and post- Spice Girls, and pre- and post- Lady Di…

    Manaen – given that you were relying on a precalculated logarithmic table, isn’t there a whiff of irony in your question? If you were truly a purist, you would have started from first principles and derived everything yourself ;)

  66. My mission interview with my bishop occurred on the same day and time as the opening of1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago. From that time forward things begin to be a blur. Even to this day…..

    -The Chicago 7 trial
    -The moon landing (of all nights to play straight arrow!)
    -Woodstock. Didn’t hear a thing about it until a month after it happened.
    -The 1969 Cubs. I have no frame of reference for the heartbreak, which is just as well.
    -My oldest sister’s Polish wedding. Live polka band, open bar, and a cast of hundreds. She and her husband arrived in Florida after a 3 hour flight and the party was still going strong.
    -The final disintegration of my parent’s marriage. My father moved out 2 days after my return.

  67. Oh this one is pretty good…I missed the advent of wireless internet. I did two years of undergrad before leaving on my mission. All Internet connections on campus were wired. My laptop (which was high-end at the time) had to use a PCMIA card (remember those?) to plug into Ethernet– no dedicated port. When I got back, but before returning to campus, I bought a new desktop computer, thinking it would be nice to have the bigger screen, processor power, etc. When I got back to campus, everybody was using laptops all over campus, even on the grass on the quad. When somebody explained to me that the school had installed “wireless Internet,” I scoffed that such a thing was possible, then went home and cried…

    I don’t think I missed that much music while I was gone. Mexicans always had their house stereos cranked and you could buy pirated mixes of Top 40 American music for like $1. But, like most missionaries serving in Latin America, I learned about Shakira way before folks back in the States. I think this is probably a post-NAFTA thing. Standards of living went up sharply there in the mid to late 1990s so everybody had a huge stereo.

  68. I didn’t miss it when Jerry Jones forced Jimmy Johnson out as the Dallas Cowboys coach. I was in Texas, and the Dallas Morning News had a headline in 128 point font about it. I bought it and read it, which was strictly against my mission’s rules. (TStevens, I’m jealous that your MP was so enlightened.)

  69. My brother missed the transition from tapered jeans to bootcut. He was short of shocked by how nerdy all of his clothes suddenly were.

  70. I missed losing Pluto as a planet. Also, hurricane Katrina and MySpace. By the time I got back, facebook was a cultural phenomenon and MySpace was already on its way out.

  71. #63 reminded me of something that came around near the end of my mission.

    We had traveled via chicken bus about 2 hours to a (more) remote area of the Momos zone for a soccer game. This new Elder came with us, and as we all began to change for the game he removed his white shirt over hsi head and was bare chested. As the ZL, I freaked a bit. “Elder, where are your ‘G’s? You can’t travel without wearing them! You have taken sacred covenants…” And so on. He looked at me like I was stupid. He says: “I wore them. Here they are.” He then extracted the top from his shirt. I went nuts again…”YOU CUT YOUR GARMENTS?!” He then told us all that no…this is the way they are made now. Had we not heard. In point of fact…no…we had NOT heard. We all immediately envied the new Elder and his comfy new garments and could not wait to return to the States to receive them (Heavenly choirs were singing as this new revelation occured!)

    Fun times.

  72. The Oregon Ducks making it to the Rose Bowl for the first time in like a million years.

    Yes, but you didn’t miss much. They haven’t won a Rose Bowl since 1917.

  73. We were permitted to watch movies only on P-day and only if they were G-rated. Some elders in my zone called me to get permission to watch a movie called “Star Wars,” which they thought merited a special exception and which I had never heard of. I asked what it was rated and gave them the inevitable answer. Of course, they went to see it anyway. I missed it and still haven’t seen it.

    I also missed The Last Waltz. I’ve watched the movie many times but still wish I’d been there.

  74. Mex Davis’s mission keeps getting longer and longer. : )

    He goes from DB Cooper (which was either 71 or 72–it was before the BYU copycat Richard F. McCoy, who bailed out with his stash near Utah Lake sometime before my friend Brent left on his mission in September 1972) to the end of the Vietnam War (you mean the fall of Saigon in 1975?) to the shift from LTM to MTC (no earlier than 1976). The Assitants to the 12 were transformed into 70s and the 1st Quorum of the Seventy was organized in October 1976.

    Who knows, if his mission was that long, he might just be one of the Three Nephites! : )

  75. I missed Arnold Schwarzenegger’s transition from acting to politics. I was playing a trivia game (and had just made fun of someone for not knowing what I thought was an obvious answer). The question was something about Terminator turned governor and I was completely and totally stumped. I was mocked. Mercilessly.

  76. I missed the release of the first part of the Star Wars prequel trilogy.

    Of course, the net effect of that is that I was only annoyed at having wasted $5 on a rental instead of $10 on a movie theater ticket.

    I’m so glad I went on my mission!

  77. #72 I was at Oregon from ’73 to 77. THOSE were football days to be forgotten.

  78. My brother missed the transition from tapered jeans to bootcut. He was short of shocked by how nerdy all of his clothes suddenly were.

    This is why 501s are the only true and living jean upon the face of the whole earth–they never go out of style.

  79. Scott,

    First movie I saw when I got back was Empire Strikes Back. Two days after I arrived home. The most striking thing was just how loud the movie theater was. My poor ears were not used to the decibels.

  80. Kari,

    Garff was my first president – I was trained by Schenk.

  81. I had no idea until about two years after my mission that the US didn’t attend the Moscow Olympics.

    I didn’t find out until many years later that the Astros and Dodgers had tied for the division title in 1980 and had settled the season in a one-game playoff (that used to be a Big Deal before the wild card). I arrived home from my mission just a few days after the playoff, but nobody bothered to mention that there was anything unusual about how the Astros made it to the NLCS.

    I was very startled to discover after I got home that regular people actually had COMPUTERS in their house.

    #58: I modified the battery compartment cover on my TI-30 so it could accommodate a spare 9V battery. I never carried log tables, but I did take a slide rule with me to tests in case my calculator died. And I did have to use it once. It sure surprised the students around me when I pulled that slide rule out of my briefcase.

    After the flood, Noah gathered all the animals together and instructed them to go forth and multiply. All the animals did so except a pair of snakes. “We can’t multiply,” they said. “We’re just a couple of adders.”

    So Noah took out his axe and cut down some trees and built a table to give the snakes as a wedding present. “Even adders can multiply,” Noah said “If they have a log table.”

  82. Karl Kategianes says:

    South America 1985-1987
    Death of Spencer W. Kimball
    Challenger explosion
    Max Headroom
    Van Halen/David Lee Roth/Sammy Hagar
    Change to 65 MPH on Interstates
    Euro headlights on US cars

  83. You’d think I would’ve missed a lot of Calvin and Hobbes. You’d be wrong.

  84. Other things I missed, now I think about it.

    I missed the Bush vs Gore election, and so I have zero understanding of the mean attitude in modern american politics. (I still always think of how classy Bob Dole was when he lost to Bill Clinton)

    I missed “Who let the dogs out” being popular in America.

    Both of these things I am grateful for.

  85. Star Trek 2. The closest the franchise ever came to being magnificent science fiction.

  86. I missed the Bionic Man and gas rationing. I also missed Carnival.

  87. The Berlin Wall coming down
    The 1989 Oakland Earthquake (I was en route from the MTC to my first area)
    Russia splitting up
    The first two Bills Super Bowl losses
    A Reds World Series