Stephanie Hallett
Updated Aug 15, 2016 @ 4:30 pm
Credit: Susan Sermoneta /

Ten years ago, the world was less scary, Tinder wasn’t a thing, and you still had back-to-school shopping to look forward to. I think we can all agree that those were the good old days.

Relive it all with this look back at what was going on in the world if you had your first day back to school in the fall of 2006.

As far as back-to-school outfits are concerned, you were definitely rocking a pair of skinny jeans.

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Happy 10th birthday, skinnies! We still love you, even if Vogue doesn’t.

If you were one of the “cool” kids, your wardrobe consisted almost exclusively of Abercrombie & Fitch.

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Actually, the company’s CEO Mike Jeffries said in a 2006 interview that only cool, attractive people should be wearing his clothes — yikes. The quote went viral seven years later — thanks, internet — and severely tarnished A&F’s reputation.

After school, you were winding your waist (in your tightest pants) to Sean Paul’s “Give it Up to Me.”

And getting your sexy back with Justin Timberlake.

Both songs were in the top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart the first week of September.

At night, you could be found parked in front of the TV getting sucked in by the first season of Heroes (RIP).

The writers’ strike the following year was rough.

And you loved keeping up with Grey’s Anatomy, Project Runway, and Dancing With the Stars, which were all kicking off their third seasons.

In less-happy TV news, you had to bid farewell to your fave network, The WB.

Credit: Giphy / Warner Bros.

Say it ain’t so!

At school, all the video game nerds in your life were obsessing over Leeroy Jenkins.

Still kind of unsure about this one, tbh.

You had successfully transitioned from Hotmail to Gmail, and Google Calendar was your new BFF.

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Peace out, planner!

Pluto was demoted to dwarf-planet status.


Bye-bye, old friend.

And Tiger Woods won the PGA Championship for the third time, pocketing a cool $1.224 million.

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Sure, 2006 was good to him. But life went downhill for ol’ Tiger after that: In 2009, his then-wife caught him texting his mistress and, uh, you know the rest.

Yes, it was an interesting time in pop culture. Not only was 2006 the year we reached peak Lindsay Lohan


Her public unraveling soon followed.

…But Britney Spears and Kevin Federline were also “happily” married and expecting their second baby.

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Their public image wasn’t so great, though.

Jessica Simpson released her first post-divorce album, A Public Affair, and it was quickly certified Gold.

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There were also some big clouds over back-to-school in 2006. The nation marked the five-year anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy.

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Hard to believe that day was 15 years ago.

And the world was shocked and saddened by the sudden death of Crocodile Hunter star Steve Irwin.

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He was a wonderful man.

To lift your spirits, you and your friends re-watched The Devil Wears Prada approximately 8 million times.

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And you obsessed over every outfit.

You also developed a taste for indie films after seeing Little Miss Sunshine over the summer, and you weren’t afraid to brag about it.

Who could resist that “Super Freak” dance routine?

Your family talked (and stressed) about The Omnivore’s Dilemma at the dinner table.

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Thanks a lot for making us all reconsider every single food choice, Michael.

And you couldn’t get the chorus of “Chain Hang Low” by Jibbs out of your head.

You probably forgot about this one, but it was one of the hottest back-to-school songs in ’06—and it’ll be stuck in your head for the rest of the week. Sorry!

Despite its challenges, there’s no way that back-to-school in 2016 could be as great as it was 10 years ago. So go ahead, rock that black nail polish and those ballet flats like it’s 2006.

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You deserve it.