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Turning The Page: A 20th Year Reunion Story

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by forever_town, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    As some of you on my Facebook may or may not know, this year is the year for my 20th year high school reunions. Since I went to two different high schools my senior year, I go to both reunions, even though I only graduated from one of the schools.

    The first reunion this year, and the first reunion back when we had our 10-year reunions, was at the school I graduated from. In each case, the reunion was special because it was the first time I went to a reunion for either of the schools I went to. Ten years ago, I was unemployed then, as I was recently. This time, I had a much better story to tell: Before I'd even hit nine months on my current job, I was promoted, and I'm enjoying the job I have now and the manager I work for.

    However, I just got back late last night from my 20th year reunion at my other school. That reunion and the 10-year before it were special for different reasons. Since I left abruptly about the halfway point of my senior year, the 10-year reunion was about closing a chapter in my life that remained unfinished. It was essentially an opportunity to do the things I didn't get to do back then.

    Since I had that experience already, it was now time for me to simply have fun and enjoy the company of classmates, many of whom I hadn't seen in at least 10 years, and perhaps some I hadn't seen in 20 years. It was also a chance to once again thumb my nose at an article that said Facebook ruined the high school reunion because it took away the mystery of reunions. During both reunions, Facebook was actually a springboard to follow up on items I noticed in Facebook.

    One woman who was there brought along her beau. When I saw her, after the usual pleasantries, I asked if she brought Dee along. She'd mentioned him enough times that I knew exactly who he was and we both were able to follow up on things we'd seen in each other's Facebooks. Later on in the night, another woman (whom was rumored to be my crush in high school) asked me when I would settle down. It was a conversation I dreaded because of the old thing of trying to broach that subject. However, I had a feeling things would be different when she used the term "partner" instead of woman, and then when she suggested I find a nice guy to settle down with.

    We then talked about my being gay. She asked me when I realized it and she was very supportive. It was definitely not the sort of conversation I expected to have at my reunion, but it was a conversation that likely would never have happened if it hadn't been for Facebook. Now that I knew I could totally be myself around my classmates now that I knew at least a few of them already know that bit of information about me, I could just set my mind toward having a great time.

    I titled this story Turning The Page for a reason that had nothing to do with Bob Seger. Ten years ago, my mother and I had a strained relationship with scarcely any communication. Now, she and I not only have a good relationship once again, she and I are planning to go to lunch together tomorrow. It will be the first time this year that I'll be able to see her before her trip down to Maryland in a couple of weeks.

    Another example of turning the page? My high school archrival (who also had the reputation back then of being the class bitch) was not only nice to everybody, which she also was at the 10-year reunion, but she bought me a beer. To me, it wasn't just about expressing appreciation for my working the door for a short while. It was also a chance to put the old rivalry in its appropriate place once and for all.

    And now, I'll enjoy the two days I have left in Maine before my journey back home begins.
     
  2. schiezainc

    schiezainc Well-Known Member

    Cool story dude. And I agree that, if anything, Facebook has enhanced the high school reunion. I've got my 10-year reunion coming up soon and I can't wait to go. Sure, I want to see how everyone I lost contact with is doing but, more than anything, I want to reconnect with people I've only interacted with over the last decade via Facebook.

    And I feel you on the whole "archrival" thing. One of the nicest aspects of growing up, I've found, is it seems as if all those bitter feelings about high school fade away as you mature. So far, every person I've run into from high school that I hated while there (Mostly because they were snobbish a-holes or just douches in general) has come across as much nicer, much more mature and I'm eager to see if that's true across the whole group of people that show up.

    And congrats on coming out and getting to actually enjoy life as you were meant to. I'm willing to bet that must not have been easy but, as long as you're happy now, that's all that matters.
     
  3. accguy

    accguy Member

    I think that FB helps the class reunion. When I went to my 20 yr, I had learned enough about people on FB that it was like we started out from a place of having some idea of what the other person was up to.

    But it didn't keep me from staying away from the mean girls in my class. I still have no interest in them.
     
  4. JackReacher

    JackReacher Well-Known Member

    My 10 year reunion next month is being set up on Facebook. Only instead of it being for members of the Class of 96, it's open to just members of the Classes of, say, 1993 to like 1999 or something. Doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Then again, there were only about 60 people in my class. I think 300+ invites went out. Should be a debacle. Looking forward to it.
     
  5. SoCalDude

    SoCalDude Active Member

    I honestly doubt I would have ever joined Facebook. But ahead of my 40-year reunion (which was last September), our reunion coordinator told everybody to get on Facebook because that is where all the updated information would be.
    The guy created a page for our class, has lots of photos on it, including a remembrance link page for those who have died.
    It's been great and I'm happy I got Facebook. I have absolutely enhanced relationships with long lost friends. Without the daily or weekly communications via Facebook, it would probably just have been a five-minute "How are you" at the actual reunion and "See you in 10 years" sort of thing.
     
  6. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    Thanks, guys.
     
  7. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    25th H.S. Reunion in October. Someone e-mailed me two days ago, since I am not on Facebook anymore and that is apparently where the plans were being made. It doesn't get any more convenient. They decided to have it in virtually my backyard, rather than where I grew up. I am still not all that keen on going. I loved high school; more than most people. But there is a reason why I haven't kept up with 99 percent of the people I grew up with the last 25 years.
     
  8. qtlaw

    qtlaw Well-Known Member

    Congrats on settling a few issues on you coming out; I will not pretend to know what it feels like but only know that it is not easy.
     
  9. westcoastvol

    westcoastvol Active Member

    I hated high school-the location, the teachers, the students. Lo and behold, someone put in my high school class' facebook group. That is, until a discussion came up about exactly where to have the reunion. I suggested just having it inside Wal-Mart so everyone could do their shopping and the classmates who worked there would simply just clock out and catch up.

    I knew it would sail over their heads to the point they wouldn't know they were insulted. I was wrong. I was kicked out of the group after that one. Mission accomplished.
     
  10. qtlaw

    qtlaw Well-Known Member

    That's funny. Guess they don't appreciate TIC humor (or was it merely reality?).
     
  11. westcoastvol

    westcoastvol Active Member

    I was just holding up a mirror to the situation. My high school class was about 325 strong. I was one of about 20 who tried any sort of post-high school schoolin'. And that's including college, community college, trade school, beauty school, one guy even went to taxidermy school.

    Ambition—and shitty dentistry—were in short supply in my neck of the woods.
     
  12. Sam Mills 51

    Sam Mills 51 Active Member

    F_T, good to know your reunions went well.

    At my 10-year reunion, there were people who had no clue it was I. I was still going through puberty at the time of graduation (seriously ... and sadly ... ), and I was working for the hometown paper.

    Worse, I'm not on Facebook, so I doubt they have the first clue of how to find me. While I was fond of some of my classmates - am still really good friends with one - I was never a big deal at my school or among my classmates. If I don't make the reunion, life will go on.
     
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