Despite their persistent passion for the Y2K resurgence, low-rise jeans, the Juicy Couture tracksuit and dad sunglasses, the Zoomers recently discovered that much like 9/11, mail anthrax, and the Bush family’s political presence, some things are better left in the 2000s — namely,  the original version of “Let’s Get It Started” by the Black Eyed Peas.

Yep, after nearly two decades of hearing the song at sporting events, school dances and probably on some oldies stations tbh, TikTok has discovered that “Let’s Get It Started” originally went by a *much* different moniker — one involving a certain slur that starts with “r”  …  that aptly describes those who continue to use it.

So how, exactly, did we get to know the current version of the song — one it seems we can agree is far superior to its predecessor? Thank none other than the NBA.

@thefirstshade When I first heard the other one I thought it was a parody #fyp #fypシ ♬ original sound - Christian Gray

The year was 2004. Normal Sweet Baby Rays consumer Mark Zuckerberg launched TheFacebook. The world was first introduced to the absolute banger that is
“Mr. Brightside” former President Ronald Reagan finally did us all a favor and died, and the NBA was searching for the perfect song to score that year’s playoffs.

Not wanting to blast the r-word on national television, the Black Eyed Peas re-recorded the track with the much more wholesome lyrics we’ve come to know and love today for the slot. The de-slurred song’s success was so resounding that the band ultimately decided to give the track another go, releasing the clean version as a single before retroactively swapping out the original on their 2003 album, Elephunk.

Yet amid the revelations, one that has left Gen Z wholly baffled as to what the actual hell was going on in the mid-2000s, it seems a handful of fans are still bitter, longing for the whole 30 seconds that song existed on it own.

While we aren’t the biggest fans of nostalgia, there is a special place in our hearts for younger generations discovering how insane our past is.