In my senior year of high school, I was the co-editor of my high school yearbook. This was an extremely stressful job as our faculty advisor would not allow the rest of the so-called staff to actually do anything because she wanted the yearbook to remain a secret until it came out. I won’t go into how delightful it was working with this woman (not) or how we had to retake her faculty picture repeatedly until she was satisfied. Or how she constantly over-rode our ideas and made us do everything her way. Or how angry she got over me slipping the sports pictures to the sports editor to write the captions. So, the entire yearbook project fell to my co-editor and me.

There was, however, one advantage of being the co-editor and only one of two people involved in selecting and cropping the pictures to be used in the yearbook—I could choose the most unflattering shots of people I didn’t like or crop them in an unbecoming manner. Not that I would actually be that petty, but the power to do so was intoxicating. And if one or two, or perhaps three unattractive pictures of people who had somehow offended me made it into the yearbook, hey, it was just a coincidence.

The planning for the yearbook began the summer before senior year. I remember the other co-editor and I perused my mother’s old college yearbooks to look for ideas and inspiration. But somewhere along the line our journalistic research turned into a laughter marathon. My mother was not amused by our hysterical giggling over her classmates’ clothes, hairstyles, and poses. Yet we couldn’t help ourselves. Did people really look like that back then?

Fast forward fifty years. I won’t say exactly when I graduated, but you can probably do the math. This was the age of the miniskirt and ratted hair. Fortunately, I never mastered the art of ratting my hair, but I was quite the fashionista of the miniskirt. As I look back over the pictures of my less-than-stellar judgment days, I can only marvel that my mother let me leave the house in skirts so short. I do remember her complaining, but I pretty much blew it off. As far as I was concerned, the shorter, the better. Of course, this was back in the day when I had firm thighs and non-sagging elephantine-skin knees. How did I ever sit down? Or bend over? In my defense, I was not alone. All the other girls sported skirts just as short. In fact, the female teachers, who were supposed to be our role models, looked as ridiculous as we did. And did I mention that girls weren’t allowed to wear slacks to school? I’m not sure I understand the logic behind the fact that miniskirts were acceptable attire but pants, that covered a lot more territory, were not.

As if miniskirts weren’t bad enough, it was also the age of bell bottoms, hip huggers, and clunky shoes. Boys wore long hair—at least by the standards of that time—and long, bushy sideburns. And the wild shirts they wore looked like someone on an LSD trip had designed them. Maybe they had.

I suppose every generation thinks it is the one which will live in infamy. But fads come and go, and what was fashionable ten (or fifty) years ago looks ludicrous today. Fortunately, my kids haven’t dragged out my old yearbooks and dissolved into hysterical fits of laughter. I can do that all by myself.