It's summer and time for alumni gatherings and class reunions. Many can't wait to renew old high school relationships and find out what other classmates have been doing with their lives. Reunions are intended to be happy social occasions, yet sometimes bitter-sweet memories seem to flood the gatherings.
As a graduating class ages, more and more classmates are lost. And, as the class size dwindles over the years, class reunions represent a time for recollections of people forever gone. Of course, most remember the good times and avoid dwelling upon sad realities. But attendees should be prepared to shed a tear or two.
Of course, the homecomings stimulate human minds ripe to recapture old experiences and strong emotions. Many times, people, giddy and nervous, just bumble conversations as their overstimulated brains send unintended words to their loose mouths. Classmates can fall victim to memories of old vendettas, hopes of renewing personal connections, and inexplicable comments that may be greatly misconstrued.
I thought the post today may be helpful to those who are attending alumni events and class reunions this year. Remember, emotions and memories and alcohol provide a cocktail that breaks down inhibitions. Caution should rule the day. Above all, people must remember how greatly things change.
Here are the Top Ten Things you should never say to someone at your reunion:
10. "So what exactly qualifies as “good behavior” in prison?"
9. "Great! You're a Doctor! Would you mind looking at this rash on my behind?"
8. "Does that grey hair in your ears constrict your hearing?"
7. "Whoa! what happened? You were really hot in school!"
6. "So...like after the reunion....could I crash on your couch?"
5. "OK, really! Your husband/wife never told you about me?"
4. "How sweet of you to bring your dad/mom!"
3. "Really?? That's your real hair?"
2. "My husband/wife is out of town! How about dinner and breakfast!"
1. "Your daughter/son is sooooooo smokin' hot! Did you say she/he is over eighteen?"
Here are the Top Ten Definite Don'ts for the reunion:
10. Don't eat beans before or during the banquet unless you intend on causing a “big stink.”
9. Don't stand next to the drunk guy/girl who lusted over you in high school unless you want a brutal butt massage.
8. Ladies, never attend without wearing a pushup bra so it doesn't look as if life has weighed you down.
7. Show your classmates only 1 or 2 pictures of your kids because after that, they start to drink.
6. Don't ask the principal you called Mr. Dingleberry to write you a letter for your prison probation board.
5. Don't stuff your 40 year old body into the outfit you wore on your first formal high school date. An exploding button can be a missile that puts a person's eye out.
4. Don't think your old boyfriend/girlfriend still craves your body because he/she told you at the 9th Grade Dance, “Let's make like fabric softener and Snuggle.”
3. Never, ever, ask your circle of friends “Where is our little homecoming queen?” because she is the frumpy little lady standing in earshot right beside you.
2. Don't pole dance, lap dance, streak, or strip unless you want to be arrested for indecent exposure and creating a panic.
1. Don't tell raunchy jokes about sex changes or transvestites even if you've met everyone at the reunion. Looks can be deceiving, and everyone will look better to you after you've had a few drinks.
I think class reunions can be great fun; however, my experience is that they have very little to do about the past and everything to do about the present. Fighting temptations to dwell on times long ago, a wise attendee shares details of his/her life today. The old photos and old memories are good for a laugh but they represent so many different things to different people. We all are guilty of holding some judgments about “the good old days.” But, let's face it, we all change, so chances are who we were in high school is not who we are today. Accepting all changes, we should attend with one guiding purpose -- to show each other love.
A Laugh Is Good
My wife and I were sitting at a table at my 30th high school reunion, and I kept staring at a drunken lady swigging her drink as she sat alone at a nearby table. My wife asked, "Do you know her?"
"Yes," I sighed. "She's my old girlfriend. I understand she took to drinking right after we split up those many years ago and I hear she hasn't been sober since."
"Oh my goodness!" said my wife. "Who'd think a person could go on celebrating that long?"...see, there really are two ways to look at everything!"