My 45th high school reunion is scheduled for the last weekend of October. Aside from the irony of holding it so close to the Day of the Dead, I find the thought of attending somewhat daunting. The last reunion I attended was the tenth.
I’m glad I went to that reunion. Most of the Ugly Ducklings had turned into lovely swans, whereas most of the Popular Kids looked like they’d been drinking heavily for the past ten years. Hmmm. There’s probably a lesson in there somewhere.
I attended Alamo Heights High School in San Antonio, the old Blue and Gold, home of the fighting Mules. Cheering for four years for that mascot was equaled only by my next four years when I tried to ignore the TCU Horned Frogs.
I don’t have the kind of high school memories that trigger wistful smiles. My life started at college, and high school was just a prerequisite purgatory. The people I’ve stayed in touch with from that time in my life can be counted on one hand, and still have enough fingers left over to crochet.
There are three factors pushing me to attend. Firstly, the pictures of alumni I’ve seen show benign-looking grandparent-types. How scary can a roomful of senior citizens be, assuming you don’t favor cutting Social Security and Medicare? Secondly, I’ve reached that precarious perch in life where the certainty of being around for the next one is a bit more uncertain. And finally, I won’t get any better-looking from here on out, so I need to let them see me while I’m riding this crest of disintegration.
Sure, I have a few good memories, such as: transforming Dairy Queen slushies into daiquiris by adding ill-gotten rum; getting an invitation to attend Georgetown University, even though I was too afraid to go that far from home; scraping together all the snow deposited in my front yard by a rare snowfall to make a two-foot-tall snow lady, and taking pictures of white-white snow on my very-red Malibu SS.
For the most part, however, I was nerdy and unpopular. I was in some sort of larval stage, waiting for the fun to start. Do I really want to revisit those days? On the other hand, I may go this year and never again. I definitely need to put those years into perspective, deposit those bones in an ossuary and inter them forever in the past.
Now all I have to do is decide whether to ask my long-suffering husband to attend, too. On the one hand, I’d be much less likely to find a comfy corner and stay there. On the other hand, going to someone else’s reunion is second only to watching whale poop settle to the bottom of the Marianas Trench on the Scale of Fascination.
I’ll have to let you know how this turns out.