Thursday, November 13, 2008

Class Reunions

by Tawny

Ahhhh, the glorious yonder days of high school. Did you love high school? Hate it? Count the days until it was over or mourn the loss on graduation day?

And would you attend a class reunion?

Here's why I ask. I'm currently working on my September 2009 Blaze (currently titleless, sigh) and it kicks off a fabulously fun mini-series (also currently titleless *g*) about a Costume Shop clerk who keeps sending out the wrong costume to our heroines. My story is written around the premise of a class reunion and the heroine has to show up in a costume that represents her current lifestyle. She'd have been happy with a Jane of all Trades, or even a Wonder Woman type costume, but instead gets a dominatrix one.

I think its going to be a fun story - super sexy and the characters are really coming to life for me. But here's the thing. When it comes to high school, I was in the category of unenthusiastic students. Most of my teen enthusiasm was focused elsewhere *g*. So the idea of attending a class reunion isn't on my top ten list of things to do. But I know plenty of people who loved school and adore the idea of attending a reunion. Some who'd go yearly if they could.

Sooo, in the name of unscientific research, I figured I'd bring the questions here and spend a fun Friday hearing about your high school expriences. Did you have those cliques that my school did? You know, the jocks, the nerds, the stoners, etc. Were you part of the in crowd or your own crowd? Did you love high school, loathe it or fall somewhere in between. Have you ever attended a reunion? How was it? Would you go again?

And last but not least, in the name of romance *g* I'd love to hear about high school romances. Was there one particular guy (or gal) you had a thing for? How's that worked out all these years later? Did they ever know about it, and if you had a chance to go back and see them now (lets pretend for the sake of my research that we're single heroines, okay) would you consider rekindling (or kindling *g*) something?


Helen said...

Is he coming to my place

Have Fun

Tawny said...

Heehee- congratulations, Helen. I hope you have fun plans for the bird today!

limecello said...

Congratulations on the GR, Helen!
Haha - class reunions... some friends have gone to a few recently - my class actually hasn't had one yet. Just heard our class prez - who is supposed to organize these things- moved to Alaska, so who knows :P

Natalie Hatch said...

you're soo quick helen

Tawny said...

Limecello - if your class prez returns from Alaska (shiver) would you attend a reunion?

Helen said...

The GR and I are going to have a restful day reading and yes of course I have some Tim Tams for him and maybe a couple for me

Great post Tawny I loved high school and was part of just a group of girls who were best mates I went to an all girls school and we had a ball and yes we have had one reunion about 9 years ago and it was fantastic and if another one was organized I would be there.
As for high school romances I had one and am still with him we started going out together when I was 15 and him 17 and we have been married for nearly 32 years and I wouldn't change it (or Him) he went to an all boys school but there were never any dances or anything I actually went to school with his sister and met him on the weekend at the ice skating rink way back in 1972 the 70's loved them years.
The new book sounds wonderful Tawny I love the idea of the wrong costume I am sure it is going to create some fun times with the dominatrix costume.

Have Fun

Tawny said...

Helen, it sounds like a fabulous day! That is so cool that you loved school and had such a great reunion! I know a couple people who, like you, rave about their experiences.

Now... AWwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww on your high school romance :-) I LOVE it. That is so awesome that you and your husband have had such a fabulous history together.

And thank you on the kind words about the book. I'm excited for it, but am battling this concern that my experience might color the story too much. So hopefully asking and getting a range of experiences will help make sure its well balanced :-)

Jane said...

Congrats on the GR, Helen.

I wasn't one of the popular kids, but I wasn't an outcast either. I was somewhere in between. I did know a lot of people in my grade, so it was nice to be able to call all them friends and acquaintances. I liked high school. It wasn't a torturous experience and I got good grades.

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I liked school but I was very shy so spent most of my time with my nose in a book. Definitely not part of the in crowd. I had a few friends but for the most part they were quiet like me. I had lots of crushes in school but to the best of my knowledge they didn't know it. I have gone to one high school reunion 17 years ago, I didn't care for it myself. One of my old crushes was there and let's just say he didn't age well.

Gillian Layne said...

Congrats, Helen!

I loved high school. I was involved in a bunch of clubs; no sports, but ran the newspaper and yearbook, key club, those sorts of things. We most definitely had the cliques, which had mostly been decided by late grade school and pretty much stuck. I was friends with everyone.

Oh, the romance. Once I had a crush on "Luke", a hunky raven haired football player a year older than me. I didn't think he knew I was alive until one homecoming dance. The football players always arrived late, of course, and there he was, all gorgeous in his jeans and Oxford shirt. For some bizarre reason, he asked me to dance--fast--and then when a slow song came on, he asked me to stay. I'll never forget the heat of his body through that shirt, or the smell of his hair, still damp from the shower. His friends wanted him to leave mid-dance--some critical high school male thing, I'm sure--but he stayed until the end.

And that was it. But it's a great memory. I met the dh my last year of high school, so that's a pretty great HEA high school memory, too. :)

Tiffany Chalmers said...

I think my ten year reunion is this year. I won't be attending. I hated HS. HATED it. I was, of course a band geek (first chair too---we didn't have strings) I can't even remember anyone's name from HS. Some first names, but no last names, lol.

helen congrats on the GH.

PJ said...

Congrats Helen! Sounds like a lovely day. So tell us, does the GR have a fav book? Does he cover his eyes during the juicy parts or give a little cock-a-doodle-do? :)

Caren Crane said...

Helen, enjoy the Return Of the Chook! *g*

Oh, Tawny, you had to ask about high school. I went to three different high schools. The one I graduated from I attended for one semester. That said, I was most attached to my first high school, since I had gone to school with some of those kids my whole life and others for several years.

In each school, I ended up with a little pod of brainy and/or orchestrally-inclined kids. The ones who took Latin and played know. I loved my geeky brethren! Also at all schools, there were pods of preppies, jocks and heads (I think they're called 'stoners' now) and LOTS of hangers-on and wannabes.

I attended the ten-year reunion of the school I graduated from ONLY because my single friend from the school was there. I attended the twenty-year reunion for my first high school and it was a hoot! It's funny to see people you went to kindergarten with fat and balding.

It's especially fun when everyone is nearing or past 40, because the people who aren't aging well really show it. Those who are...well...what can I say? We...I mean, they can smirk inside themselves and be glad they aren't that girl who was the cheerleader who now weighs 300 pounds. Me-ow!

Caren Crane said...

Oh, the romances! I generally didn't date guys I went to high school with, but all the extra-cute guys except one were NOT aging well. The one who is aging well is still the cutest thing going, with mile-deep dimples. He is also a UPS driver. Can't have everything!

Come to think of it, my husband worked for UPS for 10 years before he got his master's degree. There may be a bright future ahead for Dimples! *g*

PJ said...

I loved high school! I grew up in a small town - only 98 in my graduation class - and had known most of the kids in my class since early grade school. I was very involved and couldn't have asked for a better experience. Yes, there were cliques though they weren't the type to snub or be mean to others - at least I don't remember them being that way. Being in band wasn't a stigma. It was just "being in band". I went to my first reunion two years ago, 37 years after I had graduated, and had a blast. It was a four-class reunion and there were a couple hundred people there. We picked up like we hadn't seen each other in a couple months rather than 37 years. I'd go again in a heartbeat.

PJ said...

I dated guys both from my school and from surrounding towns. I had some steady boyfriends that I was crazy about but, underlying those relationships, there was one guy that I had crushed on starting in fifth grade. We both lived on the lake and hung out a lot over the summers. He considered me his "best friend" and would come to me for advice about girls he liked. I considered him the unrequited love of my life and suffered through every single advice session though his friendship was too important to me to ever let him know. One summer night when I was home from college we ran into each other and there were sparks...on both sides. Finally! He invited me to a party and we went out a few times and had great fun. I think it was about the 3rd date that he kissed me was like kissing my brother! lol! The crush bubble burst and we decided we were destined to be great friends but no more than that. We lost touch years ago and I regret that. I'd love to know how he's doing but the lingering crush is long gone.

Marisa O'Neill said...

Tawny the book sounds great. I have to say my high school experience was both great and tragic. I went to the Performing Arts High School in Manhattan - just like the old movie FAME. And it was that crazy. You spent half your day in your art form (for me that was dance). You spent the rest of the day in your academics, my favorites were typing and English (go figure). There were no clubs or after school activities. No cafeteria to hang out in. We all ate our lunch in a big hallway. Everyone left school and went straight to rehearsals, auditions or more classes in music, theatre or dance. We had no prom, no after school clubs, no kissing in the hallways - it was all about working on your craft. I missed all the boy/girl thing that happens in high school. BUT, I did meet some very good friends.

Now college? Well that I made up for all of that during those four years.

Joan said...

Congratulations, Helen! You and the GR are having your very own reunion.

I was hot and cold about high school. There were cliques of all kinds and I was patently excluded from one that included my friends from elementary school called the gang.

I can still remember being told by one of the "leaders" on the way home from the bus stop that I couldn't belong because I didn't have a ten speed bike.


Funny thing was, I still was on the periphery and esp. after high school played bunco with them and various other activities (mainly cause my BFF now was one).

I spent those years silently listening to them re-hash all the fun times they had and smiling through gritted teeth.

And to this day...though I've worked through it....I still can get a pang of "Darn it...I wish I'd been there" if they reminiece (sp?)

I've gone to a few reunions but the last one was it though it was the better one because man...those other classmates are starting to look raggedy when I do not!

Louisa Cornell said...

Congrats, Helen! Don't give the GR too many Tim Tams. He must be getting a bit chunky at this point. And we all know what happens to fat chickens!

Tawny I love the premise of your new series! Too funny and SO many possibilities!

I was a musician in high school and in the drama club. And I was a straight A student which tends to annoy people. The band and choral people were sort of our own clique so high school wasn't too dreadful.

I tended to date guys from outside my high school. My senior year boyfriend was a couple of years older and actually wanted to marry me so long as I didn't go on to college. That didn't happen.

The funny thing is everyone always thought the quarterback and I were a big thing because we rode to school together for years in his little MG. He and I had been friends since junior high and were close all the way through high school. It was hard for us because we were the smart kids when that was definitely NOT cool. And it was doubly hard for him because he was also this big jock.

I probably did think about him romantically from time to time. He was tall, dark, handsome, smart and sweet. And at the ten year reunion there was this moment when we saw each other across the room for the first time and he gave me this sexy little smile and said my name. Everyone was watching us. Too funny! And I introduced him to my husband and he introduced me to his wife. It was great and she was an absolute doll.

Donna MacMeans said...

You know - it's tough to go to a high school reunion when the high school has disappeared (sigh).

I never was in the in-crowd, but I knew them all. I was with the group of smart geeky girls, most of whom (like me) didn't grow up in the school's sleepy suburb and met in the library before classes started. I never went to a reunion but now I wish I had. I'd love to catch up with everyone.

I had crushes but nothing ever developed (their loss - snicker). If I wsa single and discovered there was a little chemistry still brewing (and not the academic kind), yeah - I'd be all over it. I believe in love, whereever one finds it.

MsHellion said...

1.) Yes, all cliques. I belonged to the "outcasts" one or the "those who don't really fall into any other group" group.

2.) LOATHED it. LOATHED it with the fire of a thousand hells.

3.) I would not attend a class reunion if I became President of the United States and could rub all their noses in it. Because I know dang well it wouldn't matter--they'd immediately start up with the most humiliating stories they could remember. Because to them, those stories are funny...

4.) Yes. I was totally in love with the basketball center on the boys' basketball team. I was a no-name; and he was a descendant of great local basketball greats, the sort of Prince William of the School. Or at least a Prince Harry. There was another guy in the class who was cuter and of similar lineage. *LOL* Nope, nothing ever came of it because boys of that age always see better than they can think. And us hooking up would have made as much sense as hooking up a fish and a bird. But we were friends of a sort--we were both poets and die-hard romantics. Both of us were notorious for loving people who were completely unavailable. *LOL* And no, I wouldn't try to rekindle anything (I'm laughing at thought there was something to kindle at all)--I'm better where I am. And he's better where he is.

Kate Carlisle said...

Tawny, your new Blaze mini-series sounds adorable! Funny and fabulous!! Can't wait to read this one!

I went to two high schools, first a small girls' school I loved, then a massive big city school that I loathed. I was coerced by a friend into going to a class reunion and had a dreadful time and wouldn't repeat it. Everyone was still hanging out with the same groups they hung with in school. It was annoying and pathetic! Ooh, do I sound bitter?? LOL

Helen, have a lovely day with the Tim Tam fiend!!

terrio said...

Congrats on the chook, Helen!

This story sounds like such fun. Can't wait to read how you play with that costume. ;)

I would not go back to HS for anything. My class had two cliques, my dozen or so friends (the geeks) and everyone else (rich, preppy, jocks) I did go to my 10 yr HS reunion though now don't know why I bothered. Not one person from my group of friends attended. The funny thing was that the guys were so different when the girls were exactly the same. Still catty and looking down their noses while the guys were kissing me on the cheek and asking what I'd been up to. So didn't expect that.

There was one guy I liked Sr year and I think he liked me but all we did all year was stare at each other and then look away. He was in the "in" crowd you see. The really funny part is that on the rare occassions I've seen him around town on visits home, we still stare then look away. Sometimes you can't shake that insecure teen locked inside. LOL!

jo robertson said...

Ah, Tawny, the premise for that story sounds great -- and too, too funny!

I was in the "smart" crowd, but it's been my experience that class reunions are most enjoyed by people who were more social than academic during their high school days.

I went to my 25th class reunion, sans kids and husband, and while it was fun, it's not something I'd repeat as I haven't kept connections with the kids I graduated with. Much stronger ties to the people I went to college with.

Still, it's interesting to find out what happened to those kids all those years ago. We lost a number of classmates to Vietnam.

Tawny said...

Jane, it sounds like you had a pretty mellow high school life :-) If you went to a reunion, you'd have plenty of people to hang out with and talk to, huh?

Tawny said...

LOL Dianna - lets hear it for those books to cover our noses, huh? I wasn't shy, but I spent a LOT of time in the library or reading. Its an early addiction thats never faded.

Thanks for sharing the not-so-well-aged reunion crush. I'm playing with that in the story, as well as a couple characters who change for the hotter... I mean better *g*

Tawny said...

Oooooh, Gillian! Luke sounds hot :-)

Your high school experience sounds wonderful, too. In continuing my very unscientific research *g* I'd wonder if the combination of being in a school with kids you'd been with most of your life, as well as being really involved in activities played in to how much fun you had?

Tawny said...

Psst, Tiffany, come on over here with me. I wasn't in the band but I'm in the 'didn't love high school' group :-)

Tawny said...

Caren, of course I had to talk about high school *g*. What better place to hear a variety of experiences ;-)

It sounds like you had a fab-o time, though! That had to be hard, moving all the time and always bouncing to schools. But you've got such a great personality, you must have made your niche at each one!

Tawny said...

PJ, your high school sounds lovely. I think the idea of going to school with the same people has to be so comforting. I'm slack-jawed though. Your 4 class reuinion was smaller than my graduating class. *g* That had to be so cool in getting to know everyone else and being tight with your classmates.

And your crush story :-( My romance readers heart was speeding up - yes, the unrequited best friend finally steps up - yes, a date! Yes a kiss. Booom, no sparks *ggg*

That is so NOT a cliched friends-to-lovers story LOL

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Helen, he obviously is enjoying the Oz experience!

Tawny, great post! Sadly I was one of those people who loathed school. I think boarding for five years didn't help!

The new books sound fabulous - what a great premise! Now get writing, gal! I want me some Tawny Weber to read!

Helen, I love your love story. It's so romantic! Congratulations on your long and successful life together with your husband!

PJ, loved your story about the crush that didn't quite work out. Sometimes those things are timing, aren't they? Something similar happened to me once.

Hey, Marisa, I always find your high school experiences amazing. I think part of my problem with high school is that I was bored rigid for most of it. All these kids just locked away and no activities to keep them busy. I read a lot of books, which was good, and practised the piano a lot, especially in my later years where I'd kidded myself I had some talent and might have a career. But I suppose at least it filled up some time! And as you say, once I hit uni, I discovered there really was a world out there!

Tawny said...

Marisa, that had to be an intense experience. I can't imagine being that dedicated and disciplined at such a young age! And the story of eating in the hallway - wow.

I'm so glad you made up the fun in college :-)

flchen1 said...

Ugh, Tawny! I'm sorry, but high school was not my most favorite time :) I did attend my 10 year reunion with my poor husband in tow, but bailed on the 20. Our graduating class was pretty big, so I ended up spending most of the evening feeling as if I ought to remember who all these people were, but I didn't, and making small talk all around. Ack! I was one of the slightly nerdy people who weren't particularly popular or particularly anything ;p I'm not feeling particularly motivated to attend any more reunions--the few people I want to keep in touch with, I can probably catch up with in person or on Facebook or something ;)

As for romances, I had massive unrequited crushes through most of high school on guys who probably didn't know I existed, or who pretended they didn't see me slinking about pseudo-stalking them ;) My senior year, I did start dating a guy who was my best friend's boyfriend's best friend (still with me? ;)) My parents were underwhelmed, to put it mildly, and I broke it off under pressure toward the end of the school year. (We did run into him at the reunion, and uh, I think he was still bitter.) On a happier note, that best friend's and her guy have been happily married since college :)

More than you wanted to know, Tawny? ;) Can't wait to read your story, btw!

Congrats on the GR, Helen!

Tawny said...

Awww Joanie T, that makes me sad and angry. The arbitrary criteria to be "in" is so mean. Hugs on the hurt it caused, and YAY that your last reunion paid off *g*

Tawny said...

Thanks, Louisa :-) I'm excited about this series and the authors I'm working with!

Um... your bf would have married you IF you didn't go to college? Was that his condition? Wow.

Thats cool that you were involved in so much. I'm seeing a trend here :-) And your football friend sounds wonderful. Isn't it funny how rumors start, though. Rides to school become hot affairs, homework sessions are suddenly big news, etc. I think Hollywood has nothing on high school gossip *g*

Tawny said...

Donna - your high school disappeared? Like, ::poof:: gone? Do tell...

and hey, I loved the library! Next to the parking lot exit, it was my favorite place to visit in school.

Tawny said...

*g* MsHellion, I hear ya! Although I have to say I didn't actually HATE school. I was bored, for the most part. I didn't fit in and kids that age are rarely known for embracing 'different' unless its the same different they are.

Prince Harry sounds adorable, though. Like a really good friend to have :-)

Tawny said...

Thanks, Kate :-) I'm excited about this story. I'm just wanting to make sure I don't tilt it too far to the side of MY high school experiences.

And NO that wasn't bitter sounding LOL. It fits perfectly for the direction *I* was thinking a reunion would go. If groups hung together in school, they'd hang together 10/20 years later. If people didn't fit, would they be welcomed or fit later?

Tawny said...

Terrio, ugh on the divide in school, but I am giggling over you and that guy still doing the 'stare/look away' gig years later. You're right, we really do keep our teen issues, don't we?!

Isn't it interesting that the girls were exactly the same, but the guys were warmer at your reunion?!

Tawny said...

Jo, I'm sorry to hear of your lost classmates :-( Thats heartbreaking. I love your take on class reunions -yes, they are definitely a social thing and would appeal to the more social students/graduates. I hadn't though of that distinction, but love it :-)

Buffie said...

Lovin' this post Tawny!! And the book sounds deliciously fun!

I absolutely loved high school. I am still in contact with my small core group of friends. I had such a great time. Yes, we did have groups. I was just on the fringes of the "in" crowd. I was pretty much classified as a "preppy". One of those kids who studied hard, was in all kinds of clubs (computer, french, national honor society), and showed tons of school spirit. We are the Raiders. Mighty Mighty Raiders! LOL! It was a wonderful time in my life.

And as far as high school romances go, I think all of you know that my hubby and I were high school sweethearts. We met the week after my 16th birthday and kissed before we even knew each other's name. LOL! Girl, those were the days :)

catslady said...

I met my husband in high school and we're coming up on 40 years. We went to his 30th and then mine (a year apart). His was fantastic and mine sucked big time. I guess it depends on who is in charge. In hindsight we probably should have gone to the 25th because I think more people attended.

Virginia said...

My 35 reunion is this month, but I am not going. I went to my 5 reunion but never attended any more of them. Most of the people I went to school with I have forgotten there names and faces. I don't think I will be missing much.

Beth said...

I didn't hate high school but I wouldn't go back either *g* I went to one reunion and was at such a different place in my life compared to most of my classmates that I didn't have much fun. I'm not sure I'd attend another one.

I had...I wouldn't call it a crush...but I thought a guy on the basketball team was really cute. I never even talked to him! Weird that in a small high school we didn't have any classes together or I probably would have :-)

Luckily, I found the perfect guy for me a year after I graduated.

Fun post, Tawny!

Tawny said...

Foanna, we were obviously seperated at birth.

And ick on boarding for 5 years. I'd have gone nuts. Actually, I'd have probably run away *g* but I'm bratty like that. I don't know how you managed it!

Tawny said...

Fedora, isn't it amazing -Facebook has replaced the need to go to a reunion :-D I love it!!! Especially when a reunion sounds as underwhelming as your swas :-(

Isn't it funny how cool it sounds to have best friends dating best friends (did I get that right?) but in reality its just not? I mean, double dates only go so far.

And definitely not more than I wanted to know! Thanks for sharing :-D

Tawny said...

LOL Buffie - I love how enthusiastic you are about high school :-D Thats so cool to see such excitement. I love even more that you and your hubby have been together since your sweet sixteen. Thats just sooo romantic.

Tawny said...

WOW Catslady - Happy almost Anniversary! 40 years rocks!!!

How intersting that his reunion was good and yous bad. But reading your note, it sounds like it was the event itself that was good/bad? Not the people you were reuniting with?

Tawny said...

Virginia, it doesn't sound like a big loss, no :)

I can remember a few names/faces from school, and see people every once in awhile, but for the most part, my life is very very far removed and I'm happy this way LOL.

Tawny said...

Beth, I was in such a different place than my classmates while I was *in* school :-D So I totally get what you're saying.

I think your guy is awesome - even if you did have to go outside school to get him :-D

Pat Cochran said...

Hey, Tawny,

There was a special guy in high school, he was on the football team. He was a BMOC with a posse,
I was a shy and bashful drill team member! Our "romance" lasted for one football season, I guess I wasn't as forward a female as he was looking for! He broke my heart! I wasn't allowed to use the words
I wanted give expression to, so
I coined my own. "Football player"
became my own personal epithet!

Reunions: I've attended every one
of our class's reunions. I joined
the Committee for the 20th and
served through the 50th in 2004.
I chaired the Committee for about
20 of those years. I'm looking
forward to attending but not
working the 2009 gathering!

Pat Cochran