A friend of mine recently mentioned she was contacted by our high school alma mater regarding her reunion. Damn, I hadn't thought of that place in years! I was last contacted by the tenth reunion committee some years back. I was graduating with my MBA and was desperate to get moved out of my apartment by the end of the month. I had a raging sinus infection, no money, and soon, no place to live. I laughed at how very much that was the least of my concerns at the moment.
I look back now and realize that I feel even more distanced from those days as time goes on. Perhaps the tenth reunion was the last moment in time that I had any concern whatsoever with revisiting high school. I remember for a moment I actually considered squeezing the event into my plans, such as they were. Even though I was 2,500 miles away at the time, I was planning to be in the area at some point. That thought was fleeting, however, and I continued to focus on what really mattered – getting my life in order.
I realized the best time for me to take part in a high school reunion was probably the fifth. At that point I still had some connection with the place. I was still in contact with many of the friends I made there, and we all still lived nearby. As time went on, I lost contact with many of these people; I made friends elsewhere and my interests and priorities changed.
I guess it is healthy to feel a distance from those high school days. Perhaps I have simply grown up and moved on. Yet, my mind wanders back to that place.
Who, then would be at the reunion, I pondered? I could imagine the people I would see there: I would definitely see Molly and Veronica, who could never get enough attention with all the photos of them and their gang making human pyramids or flirtatious poses for the school paper or yearbook (what is disturbing to me is that I went to an all-girl Catholic high school; whoever they were appealing to with the coquettish poses is beyond me).
I can imagine who might show up:
Glory Days – Could be Molly or one of her friends. Her parents donated big money to the school, so the administration treated her like she could do no wrong. She now works in Human Resources for a small law office, where she wonders why she can't motivate fellow co-workers with morale boosting activities like hall decorating with construction paper or choosing an office mascot. She gets together with her fellow alum and wonders when people stopped caring about organizational "spirit".
Arrested Development – Caught in a time warp. Still thinks Duran Duran is the coolest band ever. Wears tight fitting acid washed jeans and hairsprays her bangs into a wave. She doesn't yet realize that she has graduated.
Unresolved Issues – The quiet kid who sat in the back of class and who nobody remembers. She can't manage to hold onto a job or a relationship and blames it all on the mental abuse she suffered in high school. She sees the reunion as an opportunity to confront her demons and make some progress in therapy.
Nerd Redemption – Dressed like a male transvestite in high school. Her failure to bathe regularly and her penchant for staring at others made even the teaching staff uncomfortable in her presence. She made it big as a clothing designer with her own fashion line. She is hoping to receive the acknowledgement at the reunion that she missed in high school.
Single and No Plans that Night – Not a "joiner" when it came to extracurricular activities in high school. Her claim to fame was uniform violations and being intoxicated during 4<sup>th</sup> period English class. She wasn't otherwise particularly memorable in high school. She regarded those years as "doing time". She is always up for a good time, or a good laugh, at least. With nothing better planned, why not?
Needs Ego Reinforcement – Was a good student in high school, but continually overlooked for the top nods. She achieved a moderate amount of success as a CPA in a small accounting firm. She has a good marriage with three children. For the reunion, she is mentally preparing key points from her resume to emphasize any chance she gets.
Baby Factory – Former yearbook editor who only remembers those affiliated with her clique. She is hospitality chair for the reunion festivities, in addition to PTA president and perfect mother of five children. She comes prepared with endless photos and stories about her brood.
Morbidly Curious – Could be anybody from high school. She was never very invested in the campus scene. She wonders for a moment, like me, what folks are up to and actually acts on the impulse to go to the reunion. She doubts any one will remember her, anyway, which makes for more discreet observation.
I guess the only difference between the Morbidly Curious and myself is my laziness and the assurance that I can find colorful humanity right here on Gather. I think I'll just stay at home and listen to some Duran Duran and wonder why I wasn't more popular in high school.