A decade old and counting: a reflection of 2008


art by Moy Zhong

Nikol Slatinska

1. “Burning Up” by The Jonas Brothers

The year 2008 was the peak of my favorite childhood band’s career. Eight-year-old me was living her best life thanks to legendary Jonas Brothers bangers such as “SOS,” “Year 3000” and “Goodnight and Goodbye.” Then, they released “Burning Up” and changed the scope of music forever.

Not only was the preteen anthem constantly on the radio all summer, but I watched the song’s music video more times than I could count, mainly trying to discern whether or not Selena Gomez’s unexpected appearance meant that she and Nick were officially an item. The fact that this song turns 10 years old in June is shocking but not necessarily sad because any girl my age with an appreciation for good music will tell you it’s still relevant.

2. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign

I had little understanding of politics in the third grade, but I knew nonetheless that I wanted Barack Obama to win the 2008 presidential election. I think it was the combination of his relaxed, relatable personality, his put-together family and the Saturday Night Live spoofs that made him all the more sympathetic that had me thinking, “Yes he can!”
I remember little else about the election other than my class getting miniature pumpkins that October and my friend naming his pumpkin John McCain because its stem was curved like a candy cane. But that doesn’t really matter because Obama won, and it was a good year.

3. Miley Cyrus’ Vanity Fair cover

The “Hannah Montana” actress shattered her image of the perfect All-American teenager when she posed in nothing but a towel for the cover of Vanity Fair magazine in April 2008. I remember wondering if Billy Ray was disappointed and whether or not Disney Channel would cancel the star’s show. At school, my classmates and I couldn’t stop talking about our feelings of disgust over the scandal, and our teacher had to remind us to stay focused multiple times that day. Miley’s desire to be regarded as an adult may have led to some disreputable actions; however, it also culminated into her amazing album, “Breakout,” it’s top hit “See you again” being one of my favorite songs of the year.

3. Mamma Mia!

The good thing about this movie: it reawakened everyone’s love for Abba nearly 30 years after the band’s official dissolution. The bad thing about this movie: every time I searched for a lyrics video of “Dancing Queen” or “Money, Money, Money,” on my iPod Touch’s YouTube app, it would only come up with the Meryl Streep or Amanda Seyfried version. Even with that annoying aftereffect and the film’s general mediocrity, I am still thankful to this movie for reminding me of one of the most well-loved bands of our time.

5. “Low” by Flo Rida featuring T-Pain
After dominating the Billboard Top 100 list for 10 consecutive weeks in 2008, “Low” is still one of the most influential songs of the millennial generation. It established itself as a karaoke hit as soon as it took over the radio; my entire bus would join in on the Flo Rida sing-along every day for three straight months until someone inexplicably brought back “Crank That (Soulja Boy).” I would usually grow tired of listening to hormonal fifth grade boys scream the same songs for weeks at a time, but such iconic lyrics of Apple Bottom jeans and boots with the fur never lost their appeal.