Is it that mercury is in retrograde? Maybe that’s why I feel paralyzed by memories lately. Or maybe it’s that I’m nearing the twentieth anniversary of my high school graduation. I have images burned in the recesses of my mind and these days they are drifting to my conscious thoughts as I build a train track with my son or sit and crochet his trail blanket. I believe that they are photos from my high school year book and yet I haven’t seen that thing in years. It’s somewhere in my mother’s Michigan basement. Recently, when I realized that I was remembering a particular image, it slowly dawned on me that I had no idea where it came from, I thought to look through my photo albums and track it down, but had no luck. It must be in that yearbook… As far as I know, my graduating class was the first to receive an email account when we entered university in the fall of 1994. Which is to say that my memories exist in a book and in my mind, and cannot be tracked down on the internet. That’s sort of strange to me, that the thing that I use daily to find information of all kinds yields no access to my personal history. The only way to my past is through personal contact.
And I sort of like that idea. I like to think about the people that I remember from high school. I like to hope that they are doing well. I like to remember them with fondness for perhaps no other reason than they were my companions during a particular period in my life, albeit not one that I would like to revisit or enjoyed all too much. I pretty much endured high school. I could see that it was something of a stepping stone and I made the most of it. And those people that I knew then, they kept me company. They made me curious. They entertained me. And so I think that it would be nice to see them. For some strange reason, I think that it would be nice to see them. Because I’m pretty sure that it will mostly be awkward, I mean the truth is that there’s probably a good reason that we haven’t kept in touch. And yet, I’m still curious. I’d still like a little entertainment. And I have all these feelings of fondness toward the folks that I went to high school with. A few individuals sure, but the whole lot of my graduating class really. I’d like to give them a hug and say, keep up the good work, whatever it may be.
I’d also like to offer a friendly piece of advice to the current high schoolers out there who are electing their class officials: elect the ones that are good at planning a party. Yes, I know that this is nearly impossible to predict twenty years into the future, but I gotta say that it sure would be fun if it worked out that way. Is there some sort of inverse relationship between the chances of being an elected class official and the chances of having it together enough as a twenty year high school grad to be able to put together a reunion? I’m sorry, I know that sounds a bit insulting, but frankly our class officers are surprisingly lame in this department and I find it something of a disappointment. The sad fact is that there may very well not be a reunion for me to attend and that bums me out.
All these sentimental feelings that I’m having are giving me the notion that I ought to attempt to throw the ten-percent-of-us-that-would-actually-attend a party and yet that seems rather far fetched for a lot of reasons. But there’s one that looms big in my mind – strangely it’s not the part about it being a whole lot of time consuming work – and that is that the people that I think about the most probably wouldn’t come. Isn’t that always the way? Especially with high school. We were essentially a bunch of strangers who happened to be the same age and more often than not the ones that we found interesting didn’t reciprocate. A whole bunch of flying arrows missing targets. But one never knows, maybe that bowstring will grow tense enough to propel that sort of grandiose idea into flight and actually hit something. Or maybe I’ll just write a few letters and invite a few folks out to California. The sunshine sure feels nice in February.
Anyway, Mercury will soon be right. And I hope that my head will follow. It’s a strange kind of thing thinking vaguely about people that I barely knew twenty years ago over and over again. A strange thing indeed.