Corvallis High School, around 1998/ Photo by Jesse Skoubo

Here’s some stuff I remember from high school in Oregon in the late ’90s/very early 2000s: It was super uncool to be gay. It was super uncool to be a feminist. “Weirdness” in the sense of like funny shirts or wearing pajamas on pajama day was cool but anything that called into question the fundamental elements of high school society, like suggesting that a school sponsored activity was racist, sexist or homophobic, was completely unacceptable. Socially, I got in more trouble for suggesting girls be allowed to participate in the Mr. Spartan Pageant than I did for anything else I ever did, including sobbing through Calculus for about 5 weeks straight.

Why am I telling you all this? Because today my brother posted this awesome video on Facebook, shot in 1996 called “Dirty Girls,” about some high schooler girls who refuse to conform and are therefore insulted and harassed by their classmates. It’s a good reminder that maybe the world isn’t actually getting worse, maybe it’s getting better (see: the teenager Carrie interviews in today’s “Ask a Teenager”). It’s a good reminder that we were all kind of jerks in the ’90s and that a lot of us didn’t have these wide open minds until late in college. Mostly, it’s just good:

Update: Vice JUST posted an update on the Dirty Girls! Read it, but only after you watch the video.
Watch This Now: Dirty Girls 15 March,2013Lizzy Acker


Lizzy Acker

Lizzy Acker’s work has been published in Nano Fiction, Fanzine, Joyland, Eleven Eleven and elsewhere. She has read with Bang Out, RADAR, Quiet Lightening and others. Her first book, Monster Party, was released in December of 2010 by Small Desk Press.

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