Fast Forward Friday

Written by Sophie Milrom 

JFK once said that “those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future.” Dwelling on the past is human nature. We scrutinize, romanticize and often ruminate over events and people that have already come and gone. But it’s futile to dwell on things that can’t be changed, so focusing on what lies ahead is a better use of our resources.

Once a week, people all over the World Wide Web indulge themselves in what once was. Every Thursday everyone seems eager to remind me how much fun they had in 2001 or how tan they were in 2007. I frankly don’t see the point in “throwing back.” It’s not that I don’t care about my friends and Lena Dunham (the only celebrity I follow); I’m just much more interested in where they’re going than where they’ve been.

That’s why I propose Fast Forward Fridays. Inspiration is so much more interesting than nostalgia. I’m pretty sure the CEO of Pinterest would agree. In all seriousness, social technology is used for the purposes of connecting. And watching people comment on each other’s old summer camp photos feels a lot like sitting in a café eavesdropping on two girls talking endlessly about their ex-boyfriends: boring.

At the beginning of yoga it’s common to set an intention for the class. Even though mine are normally generic and we don’t even say them out loud, explicitly making that goal explicit seems to help it become reality. If even a fraction of social media activity was aspirational instead of reminiscent, a lot of potential could be unlocked. Public accountability is the premise of Weight Watchers. This is like goal watchers.

Here are five examples of potential Fast Forward Friday posts:

(1) you’re hoping to get a promotion at work: take a picture behind the desk of a corner office

(2) doing a vegan cleanse is on your bucket list: get all artsy with your camera in the produce aisle

(3) you’ve always wanted to learn how to cook: go for a selfie with an apron on

(4) Jay-Z is on tour and you’re saving up to buy tickets: tweet your favorite lyrics

(5) backpacking through Europe is your dream: pose with a beret, a pair of wooden clogs, an Manchester soccer jersey, or whatever else floats your Venitian gondola

(Disclaimer: I have one #tbt post. It’s a picture of Moses from Prince of Egypt captioned “Throwback to when my ancestors interned in Egypt. #freelabor)

Now what would yours be? It is Friday, after all.

Photo by Steven Klein for Vogue, September 2013.

Get more Humor ?
  • CDJ

    Wow, I think I may like this better than my #tbt replacement, take a selfie with your dog Thursday (#TASWYDT). Hmmm, mine would probably be similar to Gisele’s “multitasking” instagram, except I would be breastfeeding my own child, and not her and Tom’s… Although, I could breastfeed Tom, too. SORRY TOO FAR, TOO FAR. My other choice would be me hanging out with a bunch of penguins and pandas.

  • Very Wise post! 😉 And beautiful picture too!

  • Been trying to memorize “madlob” (“madlob, madlob, madlob …”) from today on – should repeat it every few weeks, so a blog post could help. I could add some other useful expressions later.
    It’s because we might spend a few days in Georgia later this year.
    (Georgia on my mind being the one in the Caucasus 🙂

  • zhanna

    Great post, but I think past experiences are the crucial point for the present to be able to take whatever decision with regards to the future. Don’t you think? I have always been optimistic, even when my life situation was a total can of worms with no glimpse of the light at the end of tunnel, bla bla bla….. And from time to time I do recollect on my past, but only for two mere reasons: 1) to appreciate a better present …& 2) believe that future will be even much better. Liked the glossy hair 🙂

  • I give myself goals of places I want to visit. Last year I decided I had to go to Spain and/or Portugal. And I will soon be booking a trip to Spain in June! Next on my list of places I HAVE to go before I have babies and my life is officially over: Greece and Egypt.

  • Ana González

    I love this post, this phrase is so true: “Inspiration is so much more interesting than nostalgia.”


  • RowenHope

    This is a great proposition. It was just yesterday when I posted my first #tbt and I felt it to be weird and completely unproductive. I’m all for #fff 🙂

  • Liv


  • Brooke W

    Forget throwback thursday, the next hottest thing is Tummy Bagel Tuesday (#tbt). It’s that thing when you make a circle with your hands and then put it around your belly button and make a bagel with your tummy. Its weird. Try it. And then post it on insta on Tuesday.

  • Hilary Grossman