People Talk About What They Did “Before It Was Cool”

I liked it before it was cool!

Whether it’s music, movies, fashion, or a million other things, people like to make this claim to sound cool and impress people.

I guess you can classify it as shaming of some sort.

What did you do “before it was cool”?

AskReddit users shared their stories.

1. Nerdin’ out.

“I was a big nerd and gamer in the late 1980s and 1990s.

In 2000 I went to an EverQuest guild meet up in Toronto and customs was incredulous.

“You’re coming to another country to meet people you met in a video game online?” They asked like 10 times in different ways.

Then in 2008ish I went to Toronto again for a (then-WoW) meet up. “Why are you coming to Canada?” “World of Warcraft guild meetup.” “How long are you staying?” “A week.” “Enjoy your visit.””

2. A great man!

“Watching Bob Ross.

Literally the only channel that was decent in my house was PBS.

As soon as I came home from school it was on.”

3. A huge hit.

“Black Panther was my son’s favorite superhero back in like 2014.

There was no character merch and I paid ridiculous money to find discontinued Black Panther toys.

Flash forward a couple years and we’re at the theater on opening day in full Black Panther costumes.”

4. They came around.

“I was the first boy in my middle school to pierce my ears (trying to be like my big brother).

Everyone roasted my a** to the point I just had to take them out.

Fast forward a couple years to high school and every dude that gave me s**t for pierced ears had gotten it done themselves.”

5. Wildly successful.


I pl ayed it way back in the Alpha version before everyone and their mom knew about it.

Watched Seananners make a video about it and bought it immediately and that video was the first spark towards it being the giant it is now.”

6. YouTubing.

“Youtube. I had a video in 2006 get over a million views.

That was big back then. I got some ad revenue, a couple of sponsors, and people putting my videos in compilations.

Haven’t done anything with it since then.”

7. Trendsetter.

“Reading Harry Potter.

We had a copy of the Philosopher’s Stone before a second book had been announced, and before either of them had come out in the US.

Absolutely obsessed with it – you couldn’t really get any toys or merch back then besides the books themselves so we would make our own.”

8. Awesome.

“I was into Nirvana early on.

I was a subscriber to the Sub Pop single of the month. I heard their cover of Love Buzz before it appeared on Bleach I think it was November of 1988.

Saw them twice before Nevermind was released.

Feb 1989 at Marsugi’s in San Jose with Mudhoney. Was a spectacular show in a venue that held less than 70 people. I think it took a couple days of days for the ringing to stop. But it was worth it.

Saw them a year later after Bleach was released at the Cactus Club.”

9. Before it came overseas.

“Watching the Office as an American when it was only the UK Version as it first aired in the US.”

10. This is funny.

“F**king everything. I’ll start doing something and it blows up in a few years. And I am far from cool.

I am a 33 year old fat white lady who can barely use her cell phone. My husband calls me “accidental hipster.””

11. Livin’ the vinyl life.

“When I was growing up, my dad had an extensive record collection from the 50’s and 60’s. And I always loved putting them on and listening to them.

They were all country/bluegrass, and some jazz. But I was huge fan of folks like Patsy Cline, Buck Owens, Dolly Parton, Eddy Arnold, Chet Adkins, Boots Randolph and Johnny Cash just to name a few. Also had some musicals in there like Annie Get Your Gun. We had so many, we hand to store them in a trunk since it collapsed out bookshelf.

This was of course during the rise of CDs, so finding vinyl was hard unless you came across them at a flea market, or Goodwill or something.

Seems weird now that Vinyl is outselling CDs and Dolly Parton and Johnny Cash are legends in our generation now. And my favorite song from Annie Get Your Gun is now remixed for athletic commercials (anything you can do I can do better)

For the longest time I couldn’t talk about it for fear I was a dork. Now I can’t talk about it for fear of being a hipster.”

12. Ahead of the curve.

“Listened to podcasts before they were podcasts.

Recorded shows (just like today, some were for online distribution, others were recorded versions of broadcasts) were put on a web server or FTP server where you could come download them.

They weren’t quite podcasts yet, because the idea of hooking them up with an RSS feed hadn’t come out yet (not even sure if RSS had been invented yet, TBH) so I had a script that ran as a cron job on my desktop, which would grab a directory listing at regular intervals and download anything I didn’t already have.

Most of them were MP3, of course, but at least one was RealAudio.”

13. Now it’s cool.

“Everything nerdy. I attended high school in the 90’s and you kept the nerdy s**t hidden.

Then came the Star Wars special editions. Then LOTR won a bunch of Oscars. Nerd stuff became more and more mainstream. Then the cool kids started watching Game of Thrones. Now dungeons and dragons is having its biggest growth ever.

So grateful. I love how it’s no longer niche targeted at young males.

Now, the neckbeards who get triggered over “fake geek girls,” I dont understand them. I’m old enough to remember when a girl who had the same interests as you was “a good thing” and “the basis for a relationship.””

14. Cool!

“The Martian.

I read “The Martian” back when it was just a text file on some backwater website.”

15. All the rage.

“I had a fidget spinner on my desk for about six months before they blew up.

At that time they weren’t being mass produced at all. You pretty much got them 3D printed or laser cut from acrylic.

I thought they were neat and sent them to my dad and brothers for Christmas.

I still have my first one on my desk. It’s laser cut neon yellow acrylic.”

16. Back in the day.


My friends and I were doing it with a Palm III with the GPS attachment back in 2000.”

17. Bitcoin.

“Bought Bitcoin in late 2010. Was on a malayasian private server for an old game I used to love, called Risk Your Life (RYL)

This server has a real money mall and of course I am dumb enough to want to pay to win.

So I go on their site and they don’t take normal credit card or PayPal but they offer some weird s**t called Bitcoin.

So I go through the steps to buy it, spent around $100 USD for around 1000 Bitcoin.

Spent 600 of the Bitcoin on some rings/ a sword/ an amulet and an armor

And 400 sat on my wallet until I sold most of it in 2017 for an absolutely massive profit. Still holding a few and changed my entire life.”

18. Early to the game.

“When I was a young kid, my dad brought home a Fairchild gaming system, and I got addicted to playing video games like Pong and Breakout on my home television.

This would have been 1976.”

19. Grunge kings.

“I ordered Nirvana’s ‘Bleach’ on cassette before Nevermind came out.

Saw in a magazine that they were supporting Sonic Youth, and Daydream Nation was my favourite album at the time, so that was enough of an endorsement for me.

I was the coolest 14 year old in New Zealand for, like, two months. Then Smells Like Teen Spirit came out, and I spent the rest of my teenage years declaring that i liked them before they were cool.

Nobody cared. And I still miss Kurt.”

20. Storage wars.

“Storage unit auctions

Before 2010 when the Storage Wars show first started, you could find auctions with a few bidders, mainly pawn shop guys, but find smaller ones on the cheap for furniture, especially during my cheap college years. Show up, place a bid for $20, get a couple end tables, bed and chair.

Thanks to that show, everyone thinks they’ll hit the jackpot, as if people who default on their units all leave behind 1940s memorabilia or something. Bids skyrocketed beyond comprehension on or around 2011, it just hasn’t been worth it since then.

Most the stuff is junk, people. The tv shows are fixed and edited. It’s not worth it thinking something is always hidden. People with valuables many times put that in a safety deposit box, not a storage shed unit.

I feel bad for the college kids who not only can’t get decent apartment rent levels, but also can’t get furniture on the cheap from storage sheds like I used to, simply because of the false expectations from a fixed TV show.”

21. Pre-Twitch.

“I used to record with a VCR when I played Mario bros 2.

When VCR recording came out I thought, hey, I could record whatever is on the TV right? It worked, I was floored. I ended up watching the tape once and thought it was the coolest thing ever.

This was on a huge furniture tube TV that sat on the floor and only had a few channels you selected with a dial. So, I pretty was a twitch streamer before it was cool. The only minor difference was I didn’t make millions of copies and mail them out to the masses. Minor.”

22. Now a household name.

“My college roommate was from Seattle- he had been to a few Macklemore shows when he was in high school.

I remember when “Language of My World” came out, my roommate was certain that Macklemore would go from being a semi-underground PNW rapper to a household name.

Later on, we had tickets to see him at a small show in Vermont. We bought the tickets a few weeks before “The Heist” came out. I think we bought the tickets for $15 each?

We bought three tickets and our other friend couldn’t come. We ended up selling that ticket for a few hundred bucks- it paid for our gas and drinks for that weekend trip.”

23. Local band.

“My high school friends were convinced that local band Slipknot was going to be a big deal.

They’d go watch them play in like basements.

I saw them play in a field once with people gathered around in a circle.”

24. Whoa.

“I was on the Internet in the mid 1980s.

I was the only kid in high school that printed book reports and probably one of the few that even knew what a MODEM was.”

25. Blades.


I bought a pair in the US circa 1989, when the only people using them were ice hockey players doing summer training, and they were completely unheard of in Europe.

Brought them back to the UK, and for a while, I was the most cutting edge skater in town. By the time they became popular, and dare I say, ‘cool’, I’d already ditched them and moved on.”

26. Would have been amazing.

“Saw AC/DC in concert before they were cool (at least before they were cool in Fresno.)

There was a lot of serious heckling and booing — cups and stuff thrown onto the stage. Bon Scott dropped his trousers and bared his a** to the crowd then walked off the stage.

If I recall correctly, there was nothing wrong with the performance, but the people were there to see Aerosmith, and were just didn’t want to wait.”

27. You have no idea…

“Read Game of Thrones in 1998.

I had to wait for book three.

You kids have no idea.”

28. You’re crazy.

“I saw The White Stripes open for another band before they blew up.

I thought they sucked. My BF at the time thought they were amazing and was convinced they were going to be huge. I thought he was crazy.

He was right and I was not.”

What are some things that you did before they were cool?

Tell us all about them in the comments.

We’d love to hear from you!