It was neither the best of times nor was it the worst of times, it was definitely not the age of wisdom though the age of foolishness seems apropos. It was the epoch of Pegged Pants, the season of Eyebrows, the spring of wine coolers, the winter of doobies pinched and spittled at the end. We had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to graduation, we were all going in a direction that turned out not to be direct whatsoever. We were the class of 1990, a year that once sounded so forward yet now reminds me of baby doll dresses, Bush Sr., dried roses and Bust a Move.
My 20 year high school reunion is coming up, further evidence of a gaping hole in the space/time continuum. Somewhere I am still 17, drawing bad southwestern geckos on my binder during chemistry class while wearing a men's vest, my lips dark with Wet-n-Wild lipliner #666. At the same time I am here, my jeans boot cut, my mouth all cherry flavored Chapstick. I am afraid if I go to my reunion the coordinate system of physics will fold upon itself and my eyebrows will explode into a thousand furry caterpillars of what they once were. Perhaps this loose grasp on science and the gecko is why I got a D in chemistry.
I was talking to a friend of mine this weekend who made the very valid point that Facebook has ruined reunions. Why pay for a bad dinner and suck in my gut for the night when I can just go online in my bathrobe and view Memorial Day bbq photos of that guy who was in my ceramics class?
And yet--I want to go. I think, you know, maybe. Like if I don't get any good movies from Netflix that weekend. I don't know. (There might be people I graduated with reading this post since I cross-publish on Facebook, so, um, hi there. You going?) The thing is we are 37 now, 38. We are not supposed to think about being cool and yet there it is--20 years later and we're still wondering who's going to be at the party and saying that we don't care.
I don't care. It was 4 years, 20 years ago. A few hundred people who knew me back when I tucked in my shirt. Some of them I have stayed close friends with, most I have not. But this time I don't care in the sense that yes, I want to go. Now I just need to convince Bryan.
I cannot for the life of me remember the name of my English teacher freshman year, but I do remember he always excused the redheads first because he said his wife had red hair and he loved her. He also assigned us Dickens. "It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known." There was a boy in that class who told me I had a face as round as a pancake and I cried. One day a girl farted in class and I laughed. I got a B and the comment that I did not work to my potential. It was a story about Resurrection, that much I know, though I don't expect much more from my reunion than just a night out drinking with people I once knew who knew me at 17.