Saturday, April 25, 2009

My High School Reunion

A few weeks ago I got an invitation in my mail for my High School Reunion. The 20th. Yes, I'm that old. I remember getting the invite for the 10th. It seems like it wasn't that long ago. It was, I think, just after I had gotten married. I looked at it then and thought about going. This time, I really didn't give it a second thought. I have no desire to go.

I mean, at least from what I can gather from watching various films and TV plots involving high school reunions, they seem to be about people either still feeling inadequate about high school or wanting to go back and gloat about how well they are doing (or at least pretend to be doing well). The thing is, I really don't care what anyone from my high school thinks of me. I mean, there were a few individuals I liked in school, I suppose, but those are also the people I'd expect not to go to a reunion. While I would be considered by many measures a solid middle-class success, I really don't care if any of the mostly forgotten people from my high school know about it. I mean, I never had many friends in high school. I don't think I've laid eyes on anyone who went to my high school since I moved out of the city it is in about 15 years ago.

Thus, there really is no point. I mean, I'd be mildly curious to see who shows up and frankly, if I'd even remember anyone from high school or recognize anyone. I could probably count on one hand the number of people I even remember I went to high school with. I'm terrible at remembering names to begin with. I'd be hopeless to remember 20 years later. I suppose I could cheat and look at my old yearbooks for a reminder. Maybe I ought to do that anyway, just to see if there is someone I may remember and might be curious to talk to. Then again, if I really wanted to get in touch with someone, I wouldn't need a reunion to do it.

Maybe five or six years ago, before I was a lawyer (but while I was in law school and still working in IT), I was at work, over in an area I didn't usually work in, and I ran into someone from my high school class. She apparently recognized me or recognized my name. I had no idea who she was, though she looked vaguely familiar or maybe her name did. (And now I can't remember what it was). She basically just asked me if I had gone to the high school and I said I had and that was about the extent of the conversation. (There were maybe a few random pleasantries beyond that.) From that, I wonder if going to my reunion would just be that same sort of encounter, times 20.

Mild curiosity is the only thing that would compel me to go. It wouldn't be hard to, since I live only about 80 miles away now, and my parents still live there. Eh, I guess I don't have to decide for a while anyway.

Looking back, I don't seem to have many friends from any point in my life. At least not from school. No one I went to school with in high school is a friend now. No one I was friends with in undergrad is really a friend - well, there are a few aquantances I may talk to every few years, but really, there's no one. On the other hand, when I was first in undergrad, some of the people I met through gaming (Dungeons and Dragons and other games) I am still friends with now and still play with.

Really the friends I have now I made through gaming or work. Or law school. Which just goes to show that perhaps high school (and earlier grammar school) really is not all that important in one's life.


Erin said...

Being on Facebook has been pretty much the same experience: remembering names but not faces, or faces but not names, making polite small talk to people who wouldn't give you the time of day in high school, pretending to care what other people have been up to while they do the same for you, seeing how little some people have changed, and how some people who were lame may actually be on their way to being OK people, but you still wouldn't want to go get drinks with them. My tenth reunion was last summer (I didn't go), and the pictures people put up more or less confirmed this.

Sunny Skeptic said...

I had an awful experience after High School. One of my best friends and I grew apart in a dramatic way, and I just didn't feel comfortable talking to her anymore. My mom tried to push the matter, and had us get together, which was a total disaster. We had nothing to talk about, and we just felt very awkward. I really did care about her, but I am just not like her now, and she's not like me...

All of our friends now are from our local atheist organization. I am very thankful for them, they've been really awesome people.

Oh, PS, I would NEVER go to my reunion. Just missed one myself, and I don't feel bad at all.

DBB said...

One of these years I may get on facebook, but probably not. I guess I just don't feel any particular need to get on there. Maybe I'm just OLD. Or something.

I kinda figure if there was anyone I wanted to be in touch with from high school, I already would be. I suppose one could be pleasantly surprised, but it seems a stretch to think that the mere coincidence of sharing a school 20 years ago means enough to base a friendship on.

I probably simply won't have time to go in any case, but I won't miss it.

armagh444 said...

A few weeks ago I got an invitation in my mail for my High School Reunion. The 20th. Yes, I'm that old. Um, no, you are not that old. Of course, I say that purely out of self-interest, because if you are that old then I have to actually admit to my daughter that her Momma is old, and I ain't about to do that.

Though I do agree with your point about the pointlessness of high school reunions. My 20th is coming up in a couple of years, and I have no desire to go as I am already maintaining contact with anyone I gave a rat's patoot for from that era of my life.

A rider's report said...

dungeons and dragons?