July 18th, 2010


High School

Just got back from the reunion. It was awesome.

It was very crowded, and very loud. The upper register of my voice is totally thrashed, so I can only speak in my Teddy Pendergrass voice, baby.

Reconnected with my two best friends from elementary school. Got to meet the one's partner of 10 years. The other lives right off the street I drive every day to get to work, and works from home, so we'll do lunch together sometime.

It's amazing to see all the people who look just the same as they did 20 years ago (well, generally with a lot less hair -- gone, thinned or receding on the men, and simply not all poufed out on the women) and all the people who look *TOTALLY* different. Some of the guys have turned into decent eye candy - guys in their late 30s are much more my speed than 18-year-olds ever were.

It was a really wonderful atmosphere. At the 10-year reunion, there was a feeling of pressure to measure up, this wondering how you'll compare to everyone else. Now? We're all 38. Nobody gives a damn anymore. We are who we are, good or bad, and everyone seemed to be comfortable with it.

But also, there was always something weird about our class. We never had the cliques; the honors students all hung out with the burnouts and the jocks all hung out with the band geeks, and in quite a few cases they were all the same people. And everybody just... got along. Like maybe there were people you weren't particularly friends with, per se, but there wasn't anybody that just HATED anybody else. One guy I was talking to remarked that nobody there was making themselves out to be important, we were all just being who we were.

Nobody asked me in so many words "So are you single?", which I was a little disappointed with, because I really wanted to answer "I would bet you money that I am the least single person here," but I did tell people, whenever it came up -- which was pretty often -- that I had recently bought a house and was living there with my three boyfriends and our two cats. And nobody -- not one person -- reacted negatively. Most people took it in stride, and just said "good for you!" (which may well be code for "I'm not really sure what to make of that, but it seems to make you happy, so... okay!"). A few were sort of "wait, what? Tell me more about this! I am fascinated!" But everybody was happy for me.

And that's... I don't want to say "special", because that sounds too self-congratulatory. So I'll just say it's unusual. There was something really different about my high school class (and I know it was just class of '90, because I know the years above and below us weren't like this), and I was really lucky -- blessed, even -- to have that kind of an environment for those tricky late teen years. Twenty years later, I still like these folks. Honestly, I'm proud and impressed how many of them seem to be solid, upstanding contributors to society.

I don't know what it was. Maybe something in the water. I just wish it weren't unusual. I think everybody deserves to have had something like whatever it was that was there, and still seems to linger on.