Portland State University, Lewis & Clark College and Reed College all opened their doors this month to a fresh crop of young scholars. How young is young these days?
At Lewis & Clark, according to the private liberal arts college's admission office, the most common year of birth for current freshmen is 1985, with the bulk of the rest born in 1984. That means that most members of the Class of '07 were conceived at a time when waterbeds were still in style and entered the world when white studded leather was still in fashion, Tina Turner was still rocking the Coliseum and Fletch was showing on the big screen.
To help understand their historical perspective, we've ripped off an idea from Wisconsin's Beloit College, which every year compiles a list of events that have happened since the birth of incoming freshmen. For most members of the Class of '07:
* There have always been MAX tracks leading to Gresham.
* Air Jordans have always been for sale; and a couple guys named Wieden and Kennedy have always been pushing them.
* Portland's mayor has never been named anything but Bud or Vera.
* Pioneer Square has always been a place to hang out. And the bricks in Pioneer Courthouse square have always had names on them.
* Gus Van Sant has always been making films.
* You could always buy a genuine Leatherman.
* HIV screening has always been available in Portland.
* You've always been able to buy a Scratch-it ticket from the Oregon Lottery.
* The Rajneeshees have always been linked to salmonella.
* Portlandia has always graced our skyline.
* The Schnitz has never been the Paramount.
* Rap albums have always gone gold and Tipper Gore has almost always been on the lyric police force.
* Northwest 23rd Avenue has never been anything but a yuppie strip.
* You've always been able to make midnight copies at Kinko's.
* There have always been wedding photos of the Boss in Oregon.
* A Macintosh has always been something with bytes, not something to bite.
* Stonewashed jeans have always graced American thighs.
* Marijuana has always been on the Oregon ballot.
* Even though the Class of '07 can't (legally) appreciate it yet, it's never been hard to order an Oregon microbrew.
* And McMenamins has always been spreading like wi-fi.