Monday, August 20, 2007


Well, I survived my much anticipated / dreaded 20th year class reunion. I feel a bit like McKay did last week when we finally had his birthday party (after two years of being out of town on his birthday and making do with be-candled angel food cake in campgrounds, he got to have a big friend party so we went all out with the Harry Potter theme). The night after McKay’s party, when found him crying in bed, I asked him: “Hey buddy, what’s wrong? Didn’t you have a good time?” And he said, “I had a great time. But now what?”

So here I am, on the other side of three reunion parties (two of which I helped plan and one of which I was in charge of) and I’m thinking now what? I had a great time catching up with old friends (the emphasis being on the OLD part – we’re a bunch of dinosaurs) and as I truly have fond memories of High School, the walk down memory lane took me past some pleasant recollections. But at the end of the lane, there is nothing looming - no big events, no destinations, just my ordinary, somewhat boring life.

I was tempted to invent myself a better life for bragging purposes at the reunion dinner. Moi? I’m a freelance writer with a 7-figure contract in the works….Oh, I just have 8 children, all of whom are Olympic hopefuls in various sports, but how about yourself?... Yes, my husband produces feature films, but lately he’s far too busy with his humanitarian missions to Bangladesh and composing those pesky Nobel Prize acceptance speeches.

At the dinner, they gave away door prizes to the alumni with the most children, the most years of post-High School education, the most visited countries under their belts, etc. I, of course, won nothing. Had they given prizes in the following categories, I would have walked away with my arms full:
  • Most recent Lasik surgery (Monday) and thus the most hideous broken blood vessels in her eyes and the fewest intact eyelashes and the blotchiest makeup and most frequent trips out into the hall for another hit of eyedrops.
  • Best impersonation of a drug addict (see above).
  • Most national parks under her belt (17).
  • Most pounds lost for the reunion (15, which was far less than I had hoped to lose, but at least I didn’t have to wear maternity clothes. Oh, wait, my skirt was actually one I bought at Motherhood. Drat. But, hey, it was really stretchy material).
  • Most likely to show up spouse-less to the reunion (Ken argued that he would be bored and he might as well stay home so we could save the $50 and the cost of a babysitter).
  • Best adult re-enactment of her teenage wallflower days. People kept telling me that I haven’t changed a bit since graduation, but while I’m clinging like a barnacle to my far more attractive and popular friend Kathy and her husband Rick as they navigated the crowd, I'm thinking: yeah, I remember feeling exactly this insecure at every gymnasium dance I ever attended. Good grief!
  • Most overdue library fines paid in the last 20 years.
  • Largest collection of mustard bottles past their expiration dates in her fridge.
Gee, talk about your exotic life. I could have put all those doctors and professional musicians in my class to shame. But instead, I chose not to hog the limelight because that’s just the kind of selfless person I am. I can’t guarantee such modesty at the 40th reunion so watch out. Which reminds me, I’d better get busy because I only have 240 months to lose a few more pounds…


Dedee said...

So funny. I get the award for the most projects started and not finished.

Also, while you get the mustard bottles, I get the expired salad dressing bottles award.

And perhaps the most zuchinni not grown by me.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed seeing you and all the other fabulous people we went to school with. It was great to see you. In fact, I'm sure that I was one of the people who said you look the same. Not only are you physically similar to what I remember, but you are doing exactly what I pictured you doing twenty years ago. You are wonderfully competent and grounded in the most important things of life. On the other hand, I would disagree with the wall flower description. You always impressed me with your quiet confidence.

Thanks for the update on your life and thoughts as a mother, professor, individual, and friend. I'll try to read more of these and check back later to see more.

Shalee said...

But you went! That counts for something. And you know you had a good time seeing everyone...

I too will most likely get the comment about looking the same.

This isn't necessarily a good thing: I'm still small, flat-chested and have unruly hair. Throw in the fact that I'm still as nutty and outgoing as ever (in a weird way) and I can easily say that no one will want to sit at the table or dance with me. Much like it was in HS. Something never change.

Maybe I can get the extra desserts...

Lucky for me, I have 2 more years til my 20th reunion.

Radioactive Jam said...

Now it's time to think like a Calvinist and say, "Glad that's over with."

Hey, it works for falling down a flight of stairs.

Luisa Perkins said...

Oh, poor McKay! Julie, you just made me laugh out loud in a public place. Yes, onlookers, I'm as crazy as I look.

The key thing about the reunion is that you made it through. And congratulations on the lasik! Very cool.

Candace Salima (LDS Nora Roberts) said...

You'll be happy do did the Lasiks. Reunions just aren't all they are cracked up to be. Mine pretty much revolve around a nice dinner and then everyone in my class of '81 gets drunk. I don't drink . . . not a lot of fun for me.

So I skip the reunions and spend time with my way cool husband (best man in the world), my amazing friends and my wonderful family. Who needs school reunions?

Jenna said...

You're cooler than you give yourself credit for. But thanks for confirming for me why I avoid reunions. And congrats on the Lasik!

bubandpie said...

I've got an award for you!

Scribbit said...

Well maybe you should have had a t-shirt made up that said, "No, really, I'm funny on my blog" and left your URL.