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How An Australian Schoolgirl Waits For The Bus: 1995 - 2015

13/01/2016 5:05 AM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST
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Camerique via Getty Images
Line of children at bus stop getting on the school bus, Birmingham, Michigan, November 5, 1966. (Photo by Camerique/Getty Images)

Advancements in technology have disrupted everything, from how we communicate to our parents to what we do with our hands. Some people might say "share via social media apps". But a teenager would say "tell my friends". The former is sounding more and more... vintage.

Teenagers are great cultural milestones. Through them, we can see how technology and other trends have changed over the years. Take the example of the early morning rush for the bus...

In 1995

Bethany was about to freak out -- the 8:45 am bus was just not coming. She was waiting at the empty bus stop, cursing herself. She had overslept again after staying up late on the phone with Cass and Mel, talking about last night's episode of 'Heartbreak High'.

"Drazic is such a spunk."

"As if! He's grotty!"

She tried to bury herself in 'Smash Hits', but even Peter Andre's dreamy face couldn't distract her from the thought of another tardiness warning from Mrs Gillespie. After an eternity, the bus finally reared its head. "Ace," she whispered to herself, opening a Wagon Wheel in celebration. "I'll just make it."

In 2000

Bethany was about to freak out -- the 8:45 am bus was just not coming. She was waiting at the empty bus stop, cursing herself. She had overslept again after staying up late last night watching her 'Buffy' season two DVDs and chatting to Cass and Mel on ICQ. She only stopped because Dad needed to send a fax.

"Dad, you're sooo lame."

She tried to busy herself by playing 'Snake II' on her Nokia 3310, but even passing level nine couldn't take that feeling of dread away. Her phone started to vibrate violently:

"WHO LET THE DOGS OUT... WHO..WHO-WHO?"

The ringtone cost $4.95, but her busy casual job at Video Ezy let her afford cool stuff. It was Bethany's mum calling: "Did you wake up in time, honey?"

"Muuuum! You didn't wake me up before you left for work -- I'm gonna be sooo late!"

But the bus had entered her sight. "Oh wait... never mind, I'll be okay," she said, hanging up and popping a spearmint LifeSaver.

In 2004

Bethany clenched her phone anxiously -- the 8:45 am bus was just not coming. She had overslept again after staying up too late reading Brett's LiveJournal and waiting for Linkin Park's album to download off LimeWire.

She tried to busy herself by getting into her minidisc tracks.

"HE WAS A SK8ER BOI, SHE SAID SEE YA LATER, BOY!"

Minidiscs cost $14 for three discs, but her busy casual job at Angus & Robertson made it easy to afford. Her new camera phone chimed -- BEEP-BEEP -- it was a text from Mum.

"DIDUGETOUTHOUSEONTIME?"

"Why do parents always write text messages in all-caps?," she thought.

She was about to send back a sarcastic emoticon but the bus was already in sight. "Yeh," she texted back, taking a swig from her Vanilla Coke.

In 2009

Bethany clenched her phone anxiously -- the 8:45 am bus was just not coming. She had overslept again after staying up too late playing Farmville, watching music videos on YouTube, chatting on Windows Messenger and Skype and downloading all of 'Two and a Half Men' from a MegaUpload link her dad tried to impress her with.

"So hardcore, Dad...."

She tried to busy herself with her phone, but Facebook, Twitter and Bejeweled were boring today. She fixed her hair in her camera and tried to get into her music, but she would really prefer it if the bus was there right now.

"CAN'T READ MY, CAN'T READ MY POKER FAAACE"

Duh-DUH -- an email from Mum. "Did you get out of the house on time, honey? I tried waking you up before I left but you were dead to the world Xoxox mum."

Bethany was about to go off at her. "OMG," she started to type, but the bus entered her sight. "Yeh I'm fine," she sent back, taking a sip from her Emma and Tom's Life Juice.

In 2012

Bethany was gathering her things in a flurry. She texted the bus -- it would be at the stop downstairs in two minutes. "Far out! Where's my Jawbone??" She had overslept again after staying up too late watching make-up tutorials on YouTube, checking 9GAG, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and updating her pug's Twitter.

She stampeded out the door to an empty bus stop. "WTF, have I missed it?!" she raged internally.

'DONG' -- a Facebook chat notification from Mum. Her screen was a mess of notifications and app spam. She navigated to Facebook to see her mum's message: "Did you get out of the house on time?"

Bethany was about to type "FML..." but the bus entered her sight. "#fashionablyontime" she messaged back with a picture of the bus. She took a sip from her Up & Go, opened up Reddit and started browsing as the bus pulled up in front of her.

In 2015

Bethany was gathering her things in a flurry. The bus was only two stops away, according to TripView. "Far out! Where's my FitBit??" She had overslept again after binge-watching season three of 'Orange Is The New Black' on Netflix, live-tweeting it to her followers, updating her french bulldog's Vine and Snapchatting with Amara and Mel.

She stampeded out the door to an empty bus stop. "WTF, has the app messed up again?!" she raged to herself. 'DONG' ... 'DONG' -- a Facebook chat notification from Mum and a Facebook comment from Nan.

"Tell Your Mum That 7 Is Fine" Nan had commented on her Facebook profile video.

Mum had written to the family group chat: "Beth, did you get out of the house on time? [bus emoji] [clock emoji] [smiling emoji] [tree emoji] [running emoji] [cat emoji] [stone henge emoji] [tick emoji]".

Bethany was sheepishly typing a message to ask if she can take an Uber but the bus entered her sight. Relief swept over her, as she messaged back a thumbs up emoji. She took a sip from her coconut water, opened up Yik Yak and started browsing as the bus pulled up in front of her.

What will 2016 look like?

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