My husband’s fifteen year high school reunion is coming up this next weekend. I am still undecided as to whether or not I wish to accompany him. I skipped my own fifteenth, despite the fact I had volunteered to help plan this event (I was drunk when I did that). I did still offer to make buttons. No one wanted buttons, so I stayed at home with my weird collection of craft supplies like the noted button maker and my bedazzler.
A little bedazzling, some glitter, or even some balloons might each have made my ten-year reunion better. That event was just awful (Sorry, Tim). There was no music, the meal was sub-par, and worst of all … we fucking ran out of beer. I suppose our class president could claim that he attempted to entertain us. He did put together a photo slideshow. However, the large majority of the highlighted photos were not even of our graduating class. There were photos from his sister’s wedding, his boastful hunting moments, and even his surgery. I am completely serious. This is why I later offered to create the slide show for a future reunion, sharing with our class president “… and it will feature lots of pictures of my vagina.” Yeah, I always keep it classy folks.
Whenever a reunion or homecoming of any sort becomes the subject of conversation, I return to the question of how I may be remembered. A former student once told me, after his mother met me at parent teacher conferences and realized we had gone to school together, “My mom said you use to do a lot of drugs – like you were a total burn-out. I didn’t want to tell you that right away though because I really wanted to be selected for debate team captain.”
If you have been following me, however, you know this is not true. I never touched a drug in my adolescence. Most of my classmates, and probably my teachers, just assumed I was smoking or snorting something because I dressed like a damn weirdo, and I also once brought some imposter pot to school. (You’ll have to check out the back catalogue of blog posts for more on that.) I used to wear dark sunglasses and lots of hats with big, bright flowers on them; I must have wanted to be like Blossom Russo (random Mayim Bialik reference).
These days, whenever a friend begins a story like, “Do you remember Jakob from Algebra? Well, I ran into him at Wal-Mart and …,” I find myself replying with the general response of, “Oh yeah. Isn’t that the kid who …?” and I am usually able to recall only one random and bizarre memory of that individual. You guessed it – here come a few of those random recollections.
There was a kid named Brandon in my graduating class. As rumor would have it, one afternoon he crapped himself on the indoor track because he was afraid to ask his coach for a bathroom break. This must have been the crowning achievement of his adolescence for once, in the middle of our psychology class without having been prompted in any way whatsoever, he announced, “Does everyone remember when I shit my pants on the track?”
In that same class, on a different day, a student named Bill erupted into maniacal laughter and became completely flushed and red-faced during a lecture that briefly mentioned cock fighting. Our teacher calmly and simply said, “Well … I see someone just woke up and heard the word cock.” My dear friend Melissa, always so kind and considerate, patted Bill on the back and said, “Settle down there, buddy, settle down.”
I once overheard a kid named Joe (I think – maybe Kevin) bragging to his friends by the water fountain. What was he bragging about? – you ask. Fucking his horse. He was honestly boasting about a claim that he fucked his horse. So, here’s how a conversation about Joe would go:
Melissa: Did you know Joe (or Kevin – whatever) is living in the twin cities now?
Me: Joe who?
Melissa: We graduated with him. He was in our geography class.
Me: I think I might remember him …. (brain silently scurrying)
Melissa: Well, he has three beautiful children now and he ….
Me: Gross! I remember! That kid fucked his horse!
With individuals I don’t know as well, I frequently have to refrain from sharing my one strange memory aloud. For example, one of my former co-workers was once talking to me about a teacher recently hired in a neighboring school district. She said, “Actually, I think you might know him. He probably graduated a few years after you.” When she told me his name, I bit my tongue to avoid replying, “Oh yeah, that’s Backdoor Brian.” Rumor with this one was that he frequently convinced his girlfriends to have anal sex.
Then, of course, one must not forget the girl who stuck a hot dog in her “biscuit” (actual meat product, slang vagina – thank you Honey Boo Boo) and had to get it removed by a doctor after it broke in half. For the life of me, I cannot remember that girl’s name, despite the fact that I also worked with her during high school and she once told me she wished her boyfriend cleaned his ass better because he always left shit streaks on the sheets when she was on the top during intercourse. I promptly placed that bit of information in my shit I didn’t really need to know file.
Given such awful associations, I often wonder – what is that one random thing I am remembered for? So, if you’re a former classmate that I probably spoke all of thirty words to in real life and am now virtual friends with, please leave your comments! You can also let us know if you recall any of these same special individuals mentioned here. It might be best if no one lets Brandon know, all these years later, that he is still the kid who shit his pants. Oh yes, we remember Brandon; we remember.
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(Above image circa 1994. It's no surprise everyone thought I was high.)