By Erica Noonan
Not that we look old enough for this, but high school reunion season has rolled around, and this year is a biggie.
Over the next few months, thousands of erstwhile kids from across the region will be flocking home to the nest like overgrown chicks for the ultimate almost-midlife milestone: the 20th high school reunion.
But there is a surprising number of thirtysomethings who insist on missing this incredible chance to face ó and laugh at ó the past.
Why? This is what weíre hearing, and why we think they should change their minds.
The Top 10 list of excuses for avoiding the reunion, class of 1988 edition:
I am not rich yet. Or, my job is not high-powered enough.
When will you be successful enough to face everyone? In 2028, at our 40th reunion? Please donít wait that long, life is too short to miss a chance to connect. Check your ego, and show up anyway.
Iím 38 and have not yet married, had kids, bought a house, written a book, sold my screenplay, ... (fill in your favorite personal disappointment here).
You have been doing something during these past 20 years. Come and tell everyone about it.
Iím too fat/going bald/have an embarrassing skin condition.
You arenít alone. Not a good excuse. Pull on your Spanx, comb it over, slather on the Eucerin, and forget about it for the night.
I hated everyone from high school.
Everyone? Not one single person you can remember with fondness? Check your e-mail contacts list, I bet there is at least one faithful high school pal there. Message them and see if they are going. Ask if they would like to see you there.
Everyone from high school hated me. Or, I havenít been in touch in 20 years, so if they didnít hate me then, they hate me now.
And ignoring this problem will make it go away? Time to make amends. Show up at your reunion, make peace, and enjoy a special bonus ó you wonít spend the next 20 years being hated.
I canít remember anyoneís name.
Thatís why God invented name tags and an open bar.
Iím afraid to see the one who broke my heart/whose heart I broke. Or, Iím afraid I wonít see them.
Suck it up, they probably donít remember you anyway.
I donít want my spouse to know what a loser I was in high school.
They already know. They love you anyway.
I hate í80s music. I refuse to go anywhere where I might be trapped in a room listening to Duran Duran or Frankie Goes to Hollywood.
Maybe your reunion has hired a sadistic DJ, but my Wellesley High reunion has made its playlist negotiable.
I canít go because I (or someone very close to me) is having a baby, is living more than 3,000 miles away, has just declared bankruptcy ....
OK, in those very special cases, you get a free get-out-of-reunion card, and we wish you well.
But seriously folks, even though some of us lived in Wellesley before bloggers started calling it ĎĎSwellesleyíí ó in fact, before bloggers even existed ó there is something to celebrate about where we came from, and how far weíve come. Even if some of you are afraid itís not far enough.
See you there.
Erica Noonan is the bureau chief of Globe West, and a member of Wellesley High Schoolís class of 1988, which is holding its reunion Oct. 11.
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