Remember when growth stocks walked the face of the earth? It wasn't all that long ago, really. Just a decade ago, concepts like "momentum investing" and "CANSLIM" were all the rage. Bottom-line multiples yielded to top-line stories as the metrics of choice for a Wall Street crowd that was always willing to listen if you had a good tale to tell.

Well, the times seem to have changed. Hot foreign markets like China and India are winning over the speculative buck, while financial statement crunching has made investing an art that looks back more than it looks forward.

Where have all the growth stocks gone? Fossil fuels, perhaps? No, not really, but when a recent article on mutual funds that specialize in growth stocks refers to the practice as "a weird relic of the 1990s, like fanny packs and Spice Girls albums," maybe it's time for me to tell you what I want, what I really, really want.

Don't bring flowers to a premature burial
I am a growth investor. Please don't stare. No flash photography, if you don't mind. I refuse to have my portfolio bronzed and shipped off to the Smithsonian. I'm no dinosaur. I'm no relic. I sure as heck ain't no Posh Spice, either.

However, by the looks of you, I see that you've got a bit of an inner growth investor, too. Don't believe me? Sure, you may think that Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is overpriced at $500-ish these days, but you must still be kicking yourself for not getting in at $85 three summers ago. Touching Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) these days may seem dicey, but don't you wish that you could have bought in five years ago when the first generation of iPods were hitting the market?

See, you were never that far away, were you? Admitting it here -- and now -- may actually be beneficial to your financial health. If the consensus is that growth investing has gone Obit City, isn't this exactly where the value-hugging contrarians will eventually come to rest their hats? Exactly.

There's a bit of a riverboat gambler in all of us. The key is knowing where the lifeboats are.

Let's consider a company such as Conexant Systems (NASDAQ:CNXT). The chip maker is trading well off its all-time highs, but it's in better shape than you probably think for a stock now trading in the single digits. The company's broadband connectivity chips business is booming. Its long-term debt has trimmed down in recent years. You can knock the company for having accumulated more than $4 billion worth of losses since 2000, yet the future is profitable for a company with barely a $1 billion market cap.

Too risky for you? How about an online retailer like Blue Nile (NASDAQ:NILE)? The diamond specialist has clocked in ahead of Wall Street's profit estimates in nine of the past 10 quarters and generated more than $28 million in free cash flow over the trailing-12-month period. Also check out Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ:AKAM). The company behind speedy and secure online content delivery has made a habit of blowing past earnings projections.

Can growth stocks be dead if signature growth companies are humbling analysts with their earnings power?

Of course not. Later today, the Motley Fool Rule Breakers growth-stock newsletter service will send out its latest monthly issue to its growing base of subscribers. Naturally, I can't reveal the two upcoming recommendations. However, I will tell you that one of the picks is a company that has also zoomed past Wall Street's bottom-line targets every single quarter.

Bring out your dead, er, dread
Do you still think that growth investing is dead? It isn't. Your mind may even be reeling at the moment, trying to figure out the two new recommendations that will go out to subscribers later today. Yes, that's your inner growth investor, crying out to let you know that it's still alive.

Subscribers won't have to guess on the new selections, of course. And if you're not the riverboat gambler that I thought you were, you can always play it safe and go for a free trial pass for the next 30 days.

Growth investing isn't a relic. It's more than just a passing fashion statement. The real trick to trouncing the market is in singling out the companies that will surprise the market in the future, and that's where successful growth stocks cut their teeth every passing quarter.

Growth is dead? Long live growth!

Blue Nile and Akamai are Rule Breakers stock recommendations. Yes, that free trial offer will let you in on today's upcoming issue, as well as unlimited access to all of the past picks.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz actually does enjoy early-bird specials, as long as he's given enough time to analyze the menu. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. Blue Nile is also a Hidden Gems pick. The Fool has a disclosure policy.