How to survive your 10-year high school reunion

imageBY ALEX RUSSELL

I just got invited to my ten year high school reunion. I’ve thought about preparing for this for almost two full days, so I’m clearly ready to tell you everything you need to know to prepare for your next one. Let’s go back to school.

The best thing about a ten year reunion is that you know exactly when it will happen, so long as you remember when you graduated from high school. This may be the first tough question you have to ask yourself: when did you graduate? You may remember it as one of the last close-to-sober major celebrations of your life. Or maybe you were cool or thin or whatever, I don’t know, the point is you were different. You weren’t, well, this.

You had your shit together. You were at your best, in some ways. You were full of hope and promise! You had either a better haircut or at the very least a different terrible one.

You’ve spent the ten years since then making questionable decisions that have had less-than-surprising results. This is no time to change those methods drastically. It’s too late to become a decent person, but you have enough time left to patch together a project that will get you a blessed C-.

First off, don’t bother planning to lose weight. Have you lost a lot of weight in the last few years? Let me ask it another way: when is the last time you had onion rings? That should not be a question you can answer, but if you’re like me then it just makes you want some damn onion rings. There are 87 restaurants open right now that will bring me some in the city of Chicago. Losing weight is a sucker’s game.

If you’re not going to lose weight, what can you do to make a good impression on everyone you kinda hated some of the time in the town you left? Just don’t gain more weight! It’s the same as “doing something,” kinda! Not going up or down is an accomplishment. You can apply this same thought to other areas of your life, this tip is free. You’ll be surprised what it does to mundane tasks like “doing the dishes” or “feeding pets.” Wait. Not that one.

Second, unfriend everyone on Facebook. This is just a good life tip. The trouble with reunions now is that everyone knows everything about everyone. You’re not even going to get small talk with that guy you had three classes with because you already know he sells tractors in a state you wouldn’t be in if not for layovers. If you unfriend everyone, you’ll get hours of conversation back in your life. Small talk is the absolute worst, but this is a great survival tip if you’ve accidentally kept in touch with the people whose parents had sex in the same town as yours.

Third, change your Brita filter. You just should do this more often, it won’t help with the reunion.

Fourth, you’re going to want to get divorced or married. It doesn’t really matter which. If you’re married now, you can get divorced. If you’re divorced, you can get married. If you’re neither, do both! You just need your life to have a recent major change in it. Without that, people will think you’re stagnant. You want to appear dynamic. You want to seem shifty and dangerous. Both sexes, whichever you’re interested in, like people who seem chaotic and in flux. Be ever changing! Quit your job and someone else’s job for them. No one marries anyone who stays the same, because then how would they get married it’s foolproof!

Lastly, you need to make a big financial purchase you can’t afford or justify. Ask yourself what you want to tell someone over drinks in a few months, and I’m certain you’ll find the answer is very similar to “I bought the biggest TV the government will allow.” Your life, odds are, isn’t interesting enough to make your former classmates jealous. But things? People freaking love things. Really rub their nose in the success of your last ten years, even if you need to destroy your next ten to do it.

No one goes to the 20th one, anyway. Those are for losers.

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