Monthly Archives: July 2009

Freaks, Geeks and Class Reunions.

Lesson One. High school sucks. If you are in high school and you are reading this I want you to know something: High School is not the best time in your life. People that say so are liars or they are delusional or perhaps they are the person that made high school unbearable for others.

I am quickly approaching thirty and most people I’ve met along the way do not think high school was the best time of their life. They rank it among the worst. My husband is one of the few exceptions to that rule, but he he went to a private school in Northern Va with a graduating class of 12. His experience was not the norm. He is also one of those rare people who is so self assured and easy going that there is little that effects him in a negative way. Maybe this is because his high school experience was not normal. Whatever it is, I envy him.

Why is someone 10 years removed from her high school years writing about high school? You guessed it. Ten year class reunion. I’ve agonized over this for years. I’ve pushed it to the back of my mind because it is a source of great anxiety. Serious anxiety. It’s practically clinical and perhaps I should’ve had my head examined years ago. Year five can only be described as a midlife crisis. The solution is simple you say? Just don’t go…

Not so simple. Ten years ago I made a fatal error in judgment. I ran for senior class president. Big mistake. I’m suppose to plan our class reunions until the day I die. To this day I’m not sure why I did it. I guess I felt like I had something to prove. Lesson Two. There is no reason to prove yourself to mean people. They are inconsequential and will be easy to ignore/avoid later in life.

No thanks to me, our 10 year reunion is being planned. It’s turning into the train wreck I feared. I procrastinated so long that what I hoped all along would happen, happened. Other people are planning it. In fact, there’s not one, but two separate events being planned. A”booze cruise” was organized after public outcry that plan one (getting together at the bowling alley in our hometown) was lame, not classy, expensive, on the wrong day (Life lesson 3. You can’t make everyone happy. Don’t try). Raise your hand if being stuck in the middle of a lake with some of the people you went to high school with sounds like your definition of hell. Exactly.

Still reading? Thanks. I promise to spare you my list of ¬†jerks, as I’m sure you have your own. My lament comes with a recommendation. If you are in high school (better yet, junior high), this is not a recommendation. Consider it mandatory. Netflix, rent, borrow, buy or steal the show “Freaks and Geeks.” I wish it had been made before I hit puberty. It’s brilliant.

As far as the television-set-in-high-school-genre goes it is the most realist. My husband (then friend) was the first to expose me to these 18 episodes of pure genius post bachelors degree. Watching it I wish I would’ve been more like the geeks from the show. Specifically Millie. She always seemed so uninhibited and was completely unconcerned with being cool. She was just herself .

Instead I waffled in the Lindsey Weir category, not knowing who I was and trying to force my square self into a round hole. It’s a sort of self inflicted misery. Unlike Lindsey I did not become friends with my tormentor (in her case, Kim Kelly).

Most¬†folks I’ve talked to that are fans of the show (everyone that has seen it) say Bill Haverchuck is their favorite character. Bill is also my favorite character. I find it ironic because Bill is definitely the kid that would’ve been picked on or mocked the most by bullies. We all had that kid at our school. Maybe you are that kid. And while I didn’t participate in any sort of mocking or social torture I’m ashamed to say I wasn’t tough enough to say something or try to stop it. Perhaps that’s just karma. When the shoe was on the other foot my friends were meek as well. To be fair, it’s hard to stand up to the Allan’s of the world when your 14.

Just watch it. It’s enjoyable even if you liked high school, i.e. my husband (freak). But I’d imagine it’s even better if you loathed high school. And if you are currently trying to survive your high school years just remember lesson one. High School sucks. It will be over before you know it. And ten years down the road you’ll look back and laugh for taking it so seriously. You may even attend your class reunion… or maybe not.


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