The class of ‘ 64
a chair from under a table so as to make the noise a chair being pulled from under a table will inevitably make.
(Once, a fat girl, who was stronger than I, punched me in the belly in the library because I wouldn’t give her the sports section of the newspaper. I grunted from the punch and attempted to flee for fear of further blows.
(In my haste, I pulled my chair from under the table and it made a noise. I had to stay after school every day for a week and my stomach hurt for a month. The fat girl’s name was “Mean Mama,” incidentally.)
Irregardless — which isn’t a word but was used a hundred times a day by one of the coaches — I still look back on my high school years with favor.
I was on the baseball team and the basketball team, and I was in the Key Club and I had a steady girlfriend, which is another reason I wasn’t particularly disturbed when we had no tenth year reunion.
The last time I saw my steady girlfriend, who later became much more than that, she was loading our living room furniture, my stereo, the bed, and the washer and dryer into the back of a truck.
Who knows what she might still have been in the market for?
Frankly, I am puzzled as to what to write witty and clever for the invitation.
I can say we’ll all drink a few beers, likely, and we won’t have to hide behind Robert’s and Alf’s drive-in to do it.
We’ll take a look at one another and say things like, “You haven’t changed a bit” when what we really mean is, “I wouldn’t have known you in a million years because the last time I saw you, you had hair.”
We’ll see who is fat now who didn’t used to be, and who lost weight and who is still obnoxious and who got rich who wouldn’t kiss you good night for the love nor money in school but has been pregnant practically every day since graduation. And who has retained all his hair and his slim, boyish figure. Like me.
We’ll listen to the old songs and tell a lie or two.
And maybe for old time’s sake, I’ll even have a dance with my steady girlfriend who later became much more than that while somebody sings, “In the Still of the Night.”
Come to think of it, fifteen years later is a perfect time to have a high school reunion. It’s a short enough period for the good memories to be fresh and for the ravages of age to gave taken only a soft toll.
And long enough to have forgiven an overdue library book, a punch in the belly, and even the night I walked into an empty house and found out for the first time adulthood isn’t all it was cracked up to be.