Sunday, July 11, 2004


Sunday, just after midnight. Can't sleep, so I figured I'd get up and either write or watch TV. Fortunately, the pen was closer. Unfortunately, I then felt compelled to go to the computer and type this up. So now the TV's playing in the background. Anyhoo, I had spent some time before bedtime reading the book of strangers. The class of '79 from my high school celebrated their 25th reunion this summer and had included the classes of '77 through '81. I didn't attend, but today, in the mail, I received the reunion booklet. Being in the aforementioned class of '81, I had never even met those from '77. Nor had I hung out much with my elders from the other classes. Even amongst my own, I knew these kids for a mere four years--a mere tenth of my life. Of those listed in the booklet, the only one i was in contact with, the only one I knew, was Jelly. And now she's dead, her funeral having been yesterday.

Even though most of those folks were just names to me, I appreciated the chance to peek in their lives. It's fascinating how many of us have migrated away from Chicagoland and what a variety of accomplishments and lifestyles we've had. It's better than watching one of the Seven Up documentaries, since I can relate to some of those high school memories. (It's also interesting to see the different style of responses to the questionnaire, but that's another rambling.) But I'm kind of schizo on the whole thing. In one sense, high school was just one leg of the journey. Even at the time I never got caught up in my school, holding the institution and peopl at arms length. (The fact that school was a half hour's drive from home helped.) Not counting my siblings, I'm in touch with exactly three--oh crap, two-- of my high school friends. For some dumb reason, however, I find that a tad depressing. Why, I don't know. Maybe it's regret that I let some of the real relationships I had back in high school lapse. Or maybe it's just jealousy of those who seemed to make better connections in those high school days. Or maybe 'tis just the realization that you can't keep everything, that life is a continual loss of things, moments and relationships. I dunno. All I know is that the ghosts of a quarter century ago are running amok in my mind, and I gotta get up in the morning.