Friday, April 23, 2010

My Life in Sepia Tones

It’s time for another high school class reunion. The email chains are growing longer than I am old. Names spark memories and scenes from those days that I thought I buried long ago. Time has softened those harsh teenaged edges and after 35 years, they don’t seem so bad.

Geometry class. The teacher would draw chalk diagrams on the walls and into the corners so that we would be able to better visualize the 3D problems. Students loved him. The janitors hated him.

Physics class. My lab partner and I were stuck with broken equipment and as a result flunked a key project. My grousing earned me the label of “Senior Class Crab.” I remember being more upset because my lab partner flunked it than I was upset for myself. She was a good friend and a sweet girl who was also incredibly smart. I let her down.

Latin class. I admit it. I cheated my way through half of the first year and the entire second year and I bet the teacher knew it, too. Then there were the long class periods we spent in the tiny upstairs teachers’ lounge reading Julius Caesar’s The Gallic Wars aloud to each other and fighting to stay awake.

Social Studies/History classes. I watched hours of filmstrips and ancient brittle movies so the teacher could be an athletic coach instead of a teacher. Some of it was seen through the taped-together lenses of my glasses because my family could not afford to get them fixed.

There are more, too. They paraded through my head today as I watched my lunch slowly spin in the office microwave. Some scenes are better off reburied in the little grey cells. Oh yes they are.

I lost my senior yearbook ages ago in one of my many moves. It’s only now that I miss it. We were such dorks and nerds back in 1975, but judging by the emails, we’ve grown up and left it all behind. Huzzah! Unfortunately, a trip back “home” is not possible. To top it off, this is the first time I really felt like I wanted to go. Perhaps I’ll be able to make it to my 40th reunion.