Saturday, December 22, 2007


HOT CHICKS, COOL GUYS


I received a link in my email the other day, via my account at Classmates, to some fotos of my high school class reunion that had been posted by a classmate whom I remember as a very cool guy. I went to see, and was gutrocked to realize that it's been nearly 50 years since we all graduated.

The fotos were ones he'd taken at the Cardinal McCloskey Memorial High School Class of 1958 reunion, held somewhere back in the old home town that I haven't visited in over 15 years, and only a couple of times in the last 40 years. I left and never went back, essentially, though I took a mindful of fond memories with me.

The Class of '58 had had 132 grads in it as I recall-- a few straight arrows, but mostly troublemakers in one way or another - that was the '50s after all - and we were all rebels with or without causes, the oh-so-hot chicks with the tight skirts, come-hither makeup and wannatouch hairdos, and the cool guys with the greased-up rat tail hair, pegged pants and cordovan ducks, movin' and shakin' to Little Richard, Elvis, Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, the Coasters, among dozens of others there in the background on the way to our own places in the big world out there, where the bond of all we'd we shared would link us always, no matter what...

But at the near 50th reunion, according to the fotos only a few of those rebels showed up, about a dozen of each sex, and the hot chicks are grandmas now, with comfortable slacks, little makeup and practical hairdos, a new kind of 'hot' we teens hadn't foreseen at all, and the rat-tailed guys are grandpas now, bald or wearing hats and soft shoes in a new kind of cool...

Amazing though, how the mind remembers faces and the memories associated with them, even after 50 years and countless worlds, the pranks we played, the trouble we got into, the juvenilities we talked about with such earnestness, we bubbling cauldrons of adolescence-- and then to realize that all the things that were so heartfully important back then turned out to be mere wisps of dreams of ephemera relative to what the future was actually made of and actually spelled out for us after all, that got us here to what it all became, as it always does in its ceaseless ways, and if we had known back then what our futures would be, would we have been willing to go there?

In my case, the answer is a resounding YES! And judging by the smiling faces in those fotos, the answer was the same for my classmates... It turned out to be true: that bond we shared was still there and holding, even after nearly 50 years of future, traveled in our separate ways.

The Class of '58 for life. Cool.

5 comments:

Winston said...

Aaahhh... fond memories and forever ties...

I was Class of '60 which had only 65 of us to "walk the stage." So many are now gone, and on the rare occasions that I get back "home" and run into one of the remaining few, it is like we graduated just yesterday, even though we have moved through the metamorphosis you described. Tonight, Roomie and I have the pleasure of joining with two other couples, including two from my class and one a few years behind. Should be like old homeweek...

As wondrous and rewarding as life has been, there is nothing that rivals those high school days and the relationships that developed there. The formative years may be in childhood, but the teen years provide the real coming of age that determines what we're going to make of ourselves as we build on those earlier foundations.

Bob Brady said...

Would that we could know at the time what the time will one day mean to us...

Mary Lou said...

58? Man you ARE an old fart aren't you?

I am always amazed when I see a class mate and see how OLD they have gotten. I was the youngest in my class, but I dont think I am NEARLY as old as they are. COuld be because all my mirrors are broken?

Bob Brady said...

Yep, the 50th reunion is next year; they had their amazingly hasty 25th reunion only a year or two ago...

And of course you're not nearly as old as they are, but even so, you've got to get mirrors that can withstand the repeated impact of your beauty...

tracy said...

Lovely tribute to your memories! And, a most excellent comment, "Would that we could know at the time what the time will one day mean to us.." So very well stated, indeed.
I am glad to be back here and catching up a bit...refreshing and peaceful place to be. Thank you, Robert!