Saturday, July 17, 2010

Reunion Time

As I wandered around my 20th high school reunion picnic this afternoon, memories of the good parts of high school started to flood back. They may have indeed been primed by our voyage a few weekends ago into the center of Palisades Reservoir on a motorboat captained by Ralph Hunter, my high school Algebra II teacher. He's thinner than he was. I'm a bit stouter. He knows his maths. I do not.

I'm reminded I'm not a huggy person. Lots of hugs being tossed left and right at the reunion, but I was not among them. Not that I felt left out. Relieved, more likely. It's the Dutch in us, I think. That natural bit of reserve. Plus, probably buried deep within our DNA, a gene that runs around in a little circle muttering "fire fire fire fire fire" in social situations, and the rest of the body takes its cues from that.

Most embarrassing moment: Shouting "Amy! Amy!" at Ruth Ann Staiger, trying to get her attention. Until I realized Amy is her older sister, my wife's age.

Second most embarrassing moment: Steve Loertscher said he had a person come to him in Boise saying, "Hey, I was over in Rexburg and there was an article in the paper about you!" She had in hand a column I wrote for the Rexburg paper about trends, mentioning Steve's attempt in the sixth grade to start a new one by wearing a padlock on one of his belt loops. You know -- and this is a bizarre thing to come from a writer -- sometimes I just plain forget that the things I write are going to be distributed (sometimes) and read (sometimes) by people who know me and eventually might get back to me about what I wrote. Spent many hours this afternoon contemplating all the stuff I've written and how it might come back to haunt me.

Best moment: Seeing I have passed on that little "fire fire fire" gene to my oldest.

Second best moment: Seeing the gene skipped my daughter and youngest son. Especially the daughter, who lamented as we left that she would never see her new friend -- from Oklahoma -- again. Don't know who she was, but if anyone from the reunion lives in Oklahoma, my daughter would like to say thanks and would be thrilled to have an Oklahoma pen pal. Lexie's eight; your daughter would be about the same age. If you read this, let me know. We can swap addresses.

It's a pity, sometimes, that my wife and I are hermits. Some days, I'd like to be a social butterfly. Some days, however, I'm very content to be me -- something that didn't happen much in high school. Maybe that's the best reward that came out of the picnic today: I came home realizing I'm pretty happy to be who I am.

Now I'm psychoanalyzing. Time to conclude this post.

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