My high school reunion: diplomacy after a decade

10 years later.

What was I expecting from my ten-year reunion? A chant? A tear? A fight? An apology? Closure? A paper plate award? I don’t know; I just know that whatever I was expecting didn’t happen.

In my defense, everything I know about high school reunions comes from TV shows and movies, where classmates are forever changing sexual preferences, changing sexes, and gaining or loosing 300 pounds. At my reunion, everybody looked the same; nobody changed that much.

Or maybe it’s that Facebook tipped me off.

The big difference between the reunion and school was this: At the reunion, everybody was on their best behavior the whole time. Smiles, hugs, polite conversations, toasts—that sort of thing, for three hours, and then polite goodbyes. I wish the reunion could have lasted a week. Based on what I’ve seen on reality TV, real personalities emerge after a couple days.

Funny, S., I don’t remember you shaking my hand in 8th grade; I remember you threatening to beat me up. Come to think of it, that was the last time we talked.

So has everybody matured, or just learned to act mature when the time calls for it? I’m tempted to believe the latter, but maybe that’s only because I haven’t fully matured, only learned to act that way.

Seeing how little my classmates cared about anything that went down a decade ago should chill me out. But I don’t know if it will. Part of me wonders if everybody at the reunion was just playing it cool. (If so, bravo!) Part of me wonders if classmates just don’t remember things the way that I do. If we had a long chat about the past, they’d probably call me oversensitive; I’d probably call them revisionists.

Or, yeah, maybe I just need to chill out.

I’m confident that there are a lot of other people in my graduating class who still think about the sad stuff and the bad stuff that went down…but, for the most part, these are the people who didn’t attend the reunion. And they’re the ones I really want to hear from. Maybe some will show in 2020.

Lee: Congrats on your wild success. Not like it’s a surprise, but still.

Jo: STWFTBGAOA, obviously. Rolls right of the tongue.

Marin, Vivek, Rajiv: I passed your message on.

Ben: The lesser of two evils.

Steve: Good call in the end, right?

Neil: Mission unaccomplished.

Brad: Good chat, sir. Let’s check back in with each other in 2020.

Big thanks to Angela and Rob Mardigian for footing the bill. Lovely gesture! Thanks, too, to Krystal Hermiz for setting it all up. Congrats to all of you who have kids and families and engagements and jobs and passions. Godspeed to those of you who are gearing up to brave the Michigan December. I’ve only been out west for two years, and I’ve already forgotten how incredibly fucking cold it gets out here. How do you people live like this? ;)


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