Monday, September 15, 2008

10 Years Later

It started innocuously enough. "It" started with medium sized card from "The Alumni Foundation" sent to my address, encased in a rather harmless looking white envelope. I very nearly threw it away, assuming it was either junk mail or a standard circular from the university I attended asking for donations. As I opened it, however, I realized the card was sent to remind me that this summer will be my tenth high school reunion.

How did they manage to find me?

I was, you must understand, not exactly someone who participated in school functions. Thankfully I was not I alone in that sentiment. The school administrators, being wise to this, provided us two options come pep rally day: go to the gym and cheer rah rah rah, or sit in the lunchroom and visit with friends. I almost always chose the latter. Having hit adolescent rebellion stage early I vocally and conspicuously boycotted just about everything. I never went to prom. I never went to a single school-sponsored dance. I never signed any pledges requiring good conduct. Instead, I frequently cut class when I could get away with it, particularly the days where we'd be forced to listen to another in a series of rambling motivational speakers.

I suppose what mostly gets to me is not that attending this function would mean that I was conforming and going against my ethos for the first time ever, it's mostly that I'd be around people who I had little to nothing in common with all of the four years I was there. People here are rather vanilla. Birmingham, though it has changed a little, is still a pretty conservative place and while it doesn't necessarily penalize the creatively inclined, neither does it particularly reward them, either. Most get married early here, dress up for church on Sunday, go to the meat and three for lunch after the service, then go home to take a nap. That's never really been my thing.

Attending would also provide some disconcerting revelations. Namely, not only have many of my classmates started to marry, as I mentioned above, they also have begun to procreate. If you knew many of these people in their teens you might seriously consider demanding that our government adopt a program of forced sterilization. I'm aware that in speaking in this manner I am assuming that no one reforms themselves with time and no one changes for the better. Maybe I'm just skeptical. Their children might turn out decently, but they'll likely be identical to their parents. Bland, conservative, inoffensive, and completely uninteresting.

So no, I don't think I'm going.

3 comments:

Karlo said...

I attended such an event and to tell you the truth, I couldn't remember anybody. I had people come and remind me that we'd been friends for years and I couldn't have distinguished them from a person I crossed on the street.

Mauigirl said...

I hear you - high school was not my thing either and I never went to a prom. I did get involved in the drama club and plays but only backstage. I really didn't have any real friends in my own school year (had more friends in the younger class behind mine). But I did go to my tenth H.S. reunion - don't really know why - and actually had a pleasant time. The jerks that I wouldn't have wanted to see didn't attend, and the other people were people I remembered and were OK to me when I was in school. I basically felt afterward that they all turned out to be pretty nice people and I might have been able to be friends with them now, if they still lived nearby. But most of them had moved far away!

I haven't gone to another reunion, and probably won't. I had to go the once and see if I could deal with it, because high school was not my favorite time of my life.

Liberality said...

I hated my high school class. Well not everyone, but the snobs and jocks I sure did. Somehow I got stuck taking all my classes with them in the college bound course so I had to deal with them more than I cared to.
I got into a small geek crowd and the only things school wise I did was yearbook and school newspaper. I got the lead part to a high school play but I was looking for a small bit part so I refused it. I didn't go to prom either. Nor I did not attend my 10th reunion either so I can definitely relate. I tagged you for a music post btw.