Posts Tagged ‘high school’

The High School Reunion: Should I Stay or Should I Go Now? Did Facebook Already Kill The Need To?

April 13, 2010 16 comments

I’ve got to be careful about what I choose to write here, because I think I might inadvertently get myself de-invited. 

I while ago, I got the official (via Facebook) invitation for my 10 year high school reunion, set to go down this summer.  Good on the former students for organizing, apparently the school was ZERO help.  So with the class of 2000 set to ride again, I pose the following query for your dissection: The whole Facebook thing seems to have eliminated the need for high school reunions, hasn’t it? 

I mean, wasn’t the whole thing with the reunion to see and catch up with people you lost touch with over the last X amount of years, and catch up?  So, now with pretty well every human being on the planet having a Facebook profile, and certainly most of every grad class that ever, well, grad-ed (even those who took a little extra time)… well, haven’t we all been doing that very same catching up, and keeping IN touch with each other already, via Facebook, or email, or whatever?

For those who just wanted to see who got fat, who’s bald, who’s rich, who’s still on drugs, and/or who you think you have it better than, well, there’s an app for that all the magic of those mysteries can be solved with a few clicks on incriminating Facebook posts.  So that’s out.  Even if you just want to creep on pictures, and see every move everyone’s made over the last decade, well, that’s at your disposal too—as long as you’ve got that all important “Friend Request” approval.  You don’t even need to leave your house for that.      

And for those looking to show up and prove some point about what you made of yourself and how you’re back to extract revenge on all the people that picked on you by rubbing your accomplishments in everyone’s face, well, if you didn’t already know… YOU’RE THE REASON NO ONE WANTS TO GO TO THESE THINGS. 

Here’s a few direct quotes from people in the reunion group that I cut and paste from our reunion page; all examples of things I don’t want to deal with, nor conversations I want to become involved in, if I were to attend:

I think this past year was my best looking year”

“I’ll be at the grad reunion and be the shocker of it all”

“I neither got fat nor skinny. I got out of my Goth period and grew my hair long.”

“I wasn’t the smartest student…and some people may have thought I wouldn’t do much in my life… well I am happy to say I’m doing pretty good.”

So basically all the things that make you point out how late it is, or pretend you’re getting a call on your phone that didn’t ring, or remind yourself of what you left on the stove, or plugged in, or what’s burning down, or whatever else you can conjure up to exit that convo A-S-A-P.

Now, of course there are good, positive reasons to go.  There definitely is no replacement for seeing people in person when compared to online social networking.  There are a few good people that I would enjoy seeing, and hanging out with again.  Rekindle some old friendships, and re-connect with those who have managed to hermit themselves from technology.  Was there anyone that became famous in our class?  Hmm, might be interesting to find that out. 

Of course, there’s going to be people who’re only going to go if ______ goes, and then there’s a stalemate, and then no one goes.  And some people live really far away, and just can’t go.  I’ve been fortunate to stay good friends with the people of that group I care to keep in touch with most; and at times, I think that’s probably all I really need.

Look, high school wasn’t that bad for me, compared to some of the tortured stories I’ve heard from others.  I had some good times, and some good friends, tried to be a good dude, and also tried not to fail classes and get stuck there.  I think I learned a few things in class here and there, but math DID turn out to be useless just like we all contended; outside of calculating tips at restaurants of course.  I definitely had my insecurities, embarrassments, and jerks and idiots that I wish I never had to have dealt with; but I got out relatively unscathed.  Some stories I’ve heard are certainly of the kind of psychologically damaging material that has people paying shrinks to keep them from climbing to the top of a bell tower and opening fire.  I don’t recall crossing anyone in that manner, so I think my odds of getting shot are fairly low.  I can think of a few people whose odds are probably not in their favour though… remind again why we all want to get together with each other again?

So if we all know that eveyone’s got their issues buried somewhere down deep, can we just all agree that this thing’s not an opportunity to get revenge, or to continue being an idiot to people, or to take that last shot at love with the girl/guy you liked but were too shy to talk to, or whatever agenda you’ve been stewing in the crockpot for waaaay too long, and can we all just hang out like civilized adults that weren’t only brought together by the social bindings of a mandatory public education system?  Can we all just pretend that despite the social awkward life period of us all once being acceptance-seeking (just me?) adolescents that were forced to congregate in the same building for 5 consecutive years, that we actually want to be in the same place with each other this time for some reason?

 Or maybe should we all just go buckwild; have one side of the room for people who want to start fights, gloat, and get embarrassed by asking out the person you always wanted to date that still doesn’t want to date you roll the dice on a crack at romance, and the other side for all the people who are over themselves and their issues, and just wanna hang out and have a good time?      

Again, I hope I haven’t just lost my invitation.  I know I sound cynical, but surely I’m not the only one with these thoughts running through their heads. 

My invitation status is currently set as “Maybe Attending”.  Do you think I should go?  Why or why not?  Did you/are you going to yours?  Why or why not?  What’s your best high school reunion story?

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