High school reunion
November 2, 2004 12:04 PM   Subscribe

Did you go to your high school reunion?

I just got invited to my 5 year high school reunion, and I’m debating if I want to go or not. Part of me says that I want to leave it in the past; another part of me says I still have a few people I want to tell off…

What'd you experience at yours? Was it worth it?
posted by NotMyselfRightNow to Grab Bag (30 answers total)
5 years? Probably not worth it. People are still trying too hard to impress each other, and have not yet grown into the people they eventually be. This is similarly the case at the 10-year, but at least at that one, half of those people will have grown up a bit. Sociologically, 15 and 20 year reunions are much more interesting/hilarious/tragic.

I went to my 10-year reunion, it was just as if everyone had swelled. - Joan Cusack character, Grosse Pointe Blank.
posted by psmealey at 12:12 PM on November 2, 2004 [1 favorite]

It depends on your high school experience. I went to an all-girls Catholic school full of the most nasty, vapid, rich bitches around. I couldn't wait to get the hell out of that dump. And I never plan on going back. Ever. (Bitter? Maybe just a little.) YMMV.
posted by MsVader at 12:21 PM on November 2, 2004

my 20th was 2 yrs ago, and none of my HS friends were going, so i decided not to either (and see how things don't really change that much after all?). I think it'll be more interesting/funny after 40 or 50 years.
posted by amberglow at 12:21 PM on November 2, 2004

Pass on the five, especially if you have "a few people you want to tell off."
posted by sageleaf at 12:26 PM on November 2, 2004

Five year high school reunion is a mix between people who pretty much only went to college and haven't done anything else, and people who have worked for five years, got married, and have kids.

Ten year reunion smooths out that huge disconnect.
posted by smackfu at 12:26 PM on November 2, 2004

No. Hell no. I wrote this five years ago and don't regret it.

Shit, has it been almost five years since I wrote that post?!
posted by mathowie at 12:29 PM on November 2, 2004

I went to my 5th reunion. Even though I had mixed feelings about it, the curiousity got the best of me. There was lots of drinking, and a few strange developments in classmates, but over all it was amicable. I spent the night laughing with a girl I'd known since 4th grade, but hadn't kept in touch with. I recently found out she died less than two years later. I'm glad I went, and I'm looking forward to this year's tenth reunion, if they remember to send me an invitation.
posted by inky at 12:31 PM on November 2, 2004

My 5 year one, I went to. It was OK. I got drunk and I got to dance with a girl who had turned me down for a date in 10th grade. Also, some guys had already developed beer guts and receding hairlines, where I was skinny and hairy as ever.

I missed my tenth. This year will be 15, but I haven't heard anything yet. I guess I'll have to show up in 2009.
posted by jonmc at 12:34 PM on November 2, 2004

Yes (for five year). I might rank it as one of my top-ten all time weekends (it was a multi-day sort of thing). It was awesome.
posted by jeb at 12:34 PM on November 2, 2004

My tenth was great. Everyone was grown up, and acted like adults. Nobody had anything to prove. People who squabbled in high school got along fine. The nerdiest guy showed up married to an absolute knockout, and everyone was really happy for him.
posted by websavvy at 12:36 PM on November 2, 2004

We've only had a 10th and I skipped it. Personally I hated about 99% of the people I went to high school with and didn't feel the need to see what they were up to. Those from that time that I really cared about are a quick phone call or e-mail away.
posted by auzten at 12:38 PM on November 2, 2004

This question was asked here.
posted by orange swan at 12:39 PM on November 2, 2004

I've been to each of mine, 5 yr thru 25 yr, and have had a great time. You have to remember that people change, they grow up, the cliques dissapear. Ours have turned into all weekend affairs as well. Lots of laughs and booze have ensued.
posted by bawanaal at 12:41 PM on November 2, 2004

I didn't have a 5th, but I loved my 10th. I stayed out till 4 a.m. both nights. It was kind of a slap in the face for me--I'd changed too much. I then went through sort of an early mid-life crisis, and got my old personality back (which most who know me will agree was a good thing).

My 20th was fun, but nothing dramatic. I don't remember going to high school with a bunch of 40-year-olds. Monty was still a dweeb. The cheerleaders were still stuck up. I got to introduce an old girlfriend to my new wife, which was cool. We stayed until the party ended at midnight, then went home, happy to get back to our lives.

I say go. You don't have much to lose, and it might be fun.
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:43 PM on November 2, 2004

I went to my fifth, but not my tenth. The first was fine. Then again, it was in Detroit, and I live in NJ, so it was ok to see a few people. I guess it depends on how you left it.
posted by adampsyche at 12:49 PM on November 2, 2004

I skipped my 25th without regret. I didn't need to be reminded of how successful my classmates are compared to me.
posted by tommasz at 1:11 PM on November 2, 2004

I went to my 10th. (9 years ago) and was accosted by one of my high school tormentors at the buffet line in front of about 25 people. The conversation went exactly like this:

"Dean Paxton! You're still wearing those same glasses!"
"xxxxxx xxxxxxx! You're still an asshole!"

The whole bunch of folks exploded in laughter. So, I don't have to go to one of those again 'cause I won forever.
posted by Dean_Paxton at 1:20 PM on November 2, 2004

I'm with mathowie - No way, no how. I'm done with that - as in finished. I moved on after graduation, and never looked back.
posted by kokogiak at 1:25 PM on November 2, 2004

i had fun at my 10th - ms. frogs and i both went to the same school (yes, i married my high school girlfriend) and we enjoyed seeing some old friends who we hadn't seen in forever.

lots of the guys who were dicks to me back in the day were now fat, bald, or had ugly spouses. i was amused by that. my wife is still as cute as ever.

as much as i thought it would be stressful, given my lack of social standing in high school, it was actually fun. there were people who i enjoyed talking to, even though we'd never been close; there were a surprising number of folks who still had the same (awful) hairstyles. and some with the same jobs. that was sort of sad.

we ended up crashing a local bar the night before and the evening after the reunion... small town, too, so it was mostly just us. aside from the excess of country music, and the surprising number of people who were into bull riding and nascar, it seemed fairly normal... the same l;ittle cliques that were present in high school were still obvious but weren't so rigid, mostly based on familiarity these days rather than exclusion as it was back then, so nobody really felt ostracized, near as i could tell.

all in all, things were fun and i'd do it again.

(but that might be because i was secretly thinking "damn, i'm better than all of you, and i knew it all along" the whole time. still a little bitter i guess.)
posted by caution live frogs at 1:30 PM on November 2, 2004

Went to my 10th, skipped my 20th. All I wanted to know about my classmates is who ended up gay, since I was the only one in the entire school to come out of the closet while still in high school. Keep in mind that my graduating class only had 80 people in it. Still that number x4=320 so there should have been anywhere from 3.2 to 32 fellow queers in that school, and none of 'em came out til college.

The entire girls basketball team seems to have fulfilled the quota, though, at least according to those that showed up at the reunion. Interestingly enough, neither the male drum major nor the male cheerleader turned out queer. But the track and field star did.
posted by WolfDaddy at 1:47 PM on November 2, 2004

Oh, and I had a blast at the thing by the way, and I would recommend going to at least one class reunion to anyone. Cliques of the past will vanish, people are adults, and there's usually both family-friendly activities and those for adults-only if the thing's well organized.
posted by WolfDaddy at 1:48 PM on November 2, 2004

Fuck no. Hell no. Not a snowball's chance in hell. You couldn't pay me enough to see those bastards again.

My ten-year reunion just happened, so I guess high school was bad enough to piss me off for at least a decade. Whenever I trek back to my hometown, I still drive out of my way to even avoid laying eyes on my old school.
posted by stet at 1:59 PM on November 2, 2004

Went to my 10th, over 20 years ago. I went to 3 different high schools and graduated from an all-girls Catholic school - our wasn't the rich bitch all-girls school but the other one that had girls of all income levels, races, etc.
I was one of two there who were pregnant, stay-at-home moms, and of our graduating class of 93 there were 2 doctors, 7 lawyers, various fitness trainers, folks who owned their own businesses, etc. Although it was a 3-day event with a dinner, family picnic, party, etc., it took me all of about an hour to see that I had even less in common with my classmates 10 years later than I did in high school, so I never went to another one, although they've had them at every milestone since.
posted by Lynsey at 2:30 PM on November 2, 2004


I hated the arseholes I went to school with then, I wouldn't waste an evening with them now. The people I really liked, I mostly kept in touch with (and are also the sort of people unlikely to go).

From what I heard, my 10-year reunion was poorly attended.
posted by krisjohn at 2:42 PM on November 2, 2004

We had (just this summer) a 20th. I didn't go, even though I currently reside in my high school home town. The pictures posted on the reunion website told me most of what I wanted to know - most of the groups still solidly in force, camera whores still worked their way into all the pics just like they did for the yearbook, the folks who were interesting in HS still looked interesting.

I did enjoy HS for the most part, but it's so far off my radar now that I just couldn't imagine devoting a whole weekend to remembering it.
posted by donnagirl at 3:02 PM on November 2, 2004

I didn't want to exit from my shame spiral long enough to see my former classmates. Twenty nine hundred miles is a long way to travel just for that.
posted by TomSophieIvy at 10:45 PM on November 2, 2004

I utterly hated everyone in my high school (equivalent), but for some reason I decided to go to our 10 years reunion. (note, we were a small class, only 27 graduates).

Strangely everybody told me how cool and smart they thought I'd been and still was. Two of the guys told me -after copious amounts of cognac- that they'd had a crush on me and one even asked me out on a date. I turned him down and went home feeling like a winner.

So, yes go, you can be surprised!
posted by mummimamma at 5:30 AM on November 3, 2004

As others have said, not just no but HELL no.
posted by rushmc at 7:42 AM on November 3, 2004

I went to my 10 year this summer and it was a truly mixed experience. I feel somewhat bad and guilty about how much I enjoyed seeing how much the lives of most the purty, popular people suck now. At the same time I did, you know, enjoy that, a lot. The bad and guilt comes from the fact that while they still suffer some of the same character flaws, they're not the snobby elitist bastards they were in high school anymore, none of them (none of us, even, since I should include myself in this statement) are perfect, but we're better, more whole people than we were in high school.

But even more than seeing my "enemies" brought down by their own character flaws was a great deal of joy at seeing how successful and happy all the little geeks seem to have become. Good, stable jobs, happy family lives (or happy no family lives, as they prefer), good education.

It was worth it, as an experience to go. They're talking about 12 year and 15 year reunions, and such, and I can't imagine flying half way across the country to visit these people every couple of years, but I'll probably go back for 20 and see how much more people have changed again.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:03 AM on November 3, 2004

haven't been to one yet
posted by kamylyon at 9:49 AM on November 3, 2004

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