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Panic at the school reunion

OPINION

November 14, 2012|By Jason Steele, @cbqsteele | For RedEye

It started innocently enough, when the mailman dropped off an envelope. At first I thought it was junk mail, but then I realized it had that distinct look of an invitation.

I racked my brain trying to remember if any friends were getting married or any gay couples having babies. I silently prayed to myself, "Please don't let it be a wedding invite. Or, worse, a gayby shower."

Then as I opened it I realized what it was: an invitation to my high school reunion. I got flush. I had heart palpitations. I had to sit down.

Was it already time for a reunion? I was panicking, but then something occurred to me: It wasn't the event itself or the time that has passed that was stressing me out, it was the fact that I need to study up on my former classmates.

Since I am Facebook friends with a lot people from my high school, you'd think I would know everything about them. But I don't. I pay attention to three things on Facebook: funny status updates, "Words With Friends" and shirtless photos of Ben Cohen.

I don't know who Tom married, or if Kim has kids, or if James ever came out of the closet. But now I need to cram for a social exam or I am going to look like an idiot!

I have to know everyone's relationship status, and their spouses' and kids' names—or at least what trips they have recently taken for some talking points. Not to mention the fact that I should brush up on what subjects to avoid in conversation.

It's like high school all over again, except instead of memorizing WWII details or all the counties in Pennsylvania, I am memorizing trivia and gossip. In theory, this should be more fun than high school class, but in reality it's quite stressful. I may end up making note cards or writing important details on the back of my hand.

But of course, just like in high school, the thought of studying leaves me cold. So I have been procrastinating, and here I am just days away from the event and I still haven't learned anything, which is really pathetic considering I am on Facebook about 20 hours a day.

Here's my solution: I am going to post a status update asking who's going. That way anyone who isn't attending can skip past this hot mess. Even with this research, it still seems like I'll get the facts and people mixed up.

"Tina, where's your husband tonight? ... Oh, he was killed in a tragic gambling accident? I thought that was Mary's husband? Oh, hers is in jail?"

It's too much to remember. Maybe I'll just tell everyone I was hit on the head and have temporary amnesia. Let's just hope they don't pay attention to Facebook either, or else they'll know I'm full of it.

Wow, this really is high school all over again!

Jason Steele is a RedEye special contributor.

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