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Emily Jones COLUMN: Why should I attend my class reunion?

August 3, 2010

My high school class reunion is this weekend. I think it’s the 30th, no wait, maybe its the 45th. Who cares, or who really wants to know those gory details.
I’ll be there with bells on, since I still can’t zip up the skinny jeans I’d planned to wear for the Friday evening “ice breaker.”
Nor was I able to pull off my transformation into a Victoria Principal look-alike, despite purchasing her complete line of skin care products from an infomercial.
What a rip. Victoria GUARANTEED I would look younger in 14 days. It’s been 42 days and I still can’t tell any difference. Thankfully, most of my classmates see dimly these days. I wish we had recommended that no one wear their glasses to the reunion so those tell tale lines and sags cannot be detected.
Our previous get-togethers have always featured an outdoor picnic in the broad daylight. Never again. We will be meeting in a cavernous theatre with the lights cut to the lowest wattage allowed.
Instead of dancing the night away doing The Twist, the Wahtusi, the Alligator or the Mashed Potatoes, we’ll be eating the mashed potatoes and nodding off in our plates about 10 p.m.
I remember my 10th reunion. We went out and bought new cars, huge fake diamond rings and arrived coiffured, buffed and tanned by months of soaking up the sun. This year, we’ll likely be a whiter shade of pale and stuck with age spots as a result of preparations for earlier reunions.
Instead of bragging about the accomplishments of our children, we’ll be discussing the medications we are taking. And we don’t need to brag about our career coups because most of us don’t have one anymore.
We are waaay past caring about all the trappings of success we all expected to arrive on a silver platter. That platter is tarnished, and I still haven’t written the Great American Novel. It’s stuck in my brain and can’t get out.
My classmates and I are simply looking forward to renewing old friendships and reliving our experiences of growing up in small town America where all the women were strong, all the men were good-looking, and all the children (in the class of ‘65) were above average.
Oh dear, did I just plagiarize? No matter, it’s true. I wouldn’t miss this reunion for the world because I just want to feel 17 again.

Emily Jones is a retired journalist who lives in Starkville, Mississippi. She edits a website for bouncing baby boomers facing retirement. She welcomes comments at www.deludeddiva.com.

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