It's no secret that my ten year reunion is coming up fast (fall 2011 -- class of '01, baby!). And well, that's pretty gnarly I guess, but, like anyone else, I can't help myself from assessing my overall life ten years later as compared to when I was a wee chap of just 17-years-old.
So, anyway, here's my list of things I didn't think I would ever need a lot of, that I need a lot of now. Maybe you'd like to add some items, too?
1. Dollars. Yep, like most of us twenty-somethings, I'm discovering that college costs continue to rise and the opportunities for making as much or more money as our parents, aren't really there anymore. Add onto that a bleak economic outlook and reality, and well, damn -- I really miss those cheap school meals (yum... cafeteria cheese). I'm staying in college so I never have to pay back my loans. That's a good idea, right?
Flashback: anyone else remember when premium gas cost a buck fifty? Gee-bus. Now we get excited about $3.68 regular gas.
2. 15. As in 15 hours of exercise a week -- and that's not even enough to actually lose weight. I just ran a half marathon and I'm still about 20 pounds above my ideal weight(which is 45 pounds over my high school weight!). I miss not doing anything physical for several weeks and only having to do a sit up or two in the morning for a few days to get back in shape. I also miss eating an entire pot of macaroni a day.
Flashback: Gym class. I wish an hour of activity was still mandatory in my day.
3. 23.04 gigabytes of music on my I-tunes. I remember when I used to get high and just go to the Double T Diner and listen to the same three songs over and over again. Not that I ever used drugs much or do at all now, I'm just saying. Moreover, I used to have one mix cassette tape -- the Best of Allman Bros, Skynyrd, and ol' Led Zeppelin -- that I listened to in my '73 Ford Maverick all summer long. Some of you used to make fun of me I bet. I still have the Mav :-) (And no, it doesn't work. Weren't you listening? I'm broke, san. Need an engine. Donations?)
Flashback: Remember finally being able to park in the senior lot instead of Ebenezer?
4. 21, or the average number of gifts I have to buy a year for weddings, house-warming parties, nieces and nephews, other people's kids, master's graduations, etc. I like helping people out and being generous when I can, but my part-time adjunct position that I was rewarded with in exchange for my 60,000 dollars worth of college education, only pays about 14K a year (not complaining, simply stating facts). I don't know how many more crappy poems I can write, frame, and disguise as gifts.
Roses are red. Please stop having kids.
Violets are blue. Divorce is expensive; don't get married.
Flashback: When buying your friend some cookies or an ice cream bar from the vending machines meant more than a gift card to Home Depot or a toaster oven.
5. 1,000,000 seconds. The number of seconds thus far I've been doubled-over in laughter when remembering that I graduated from high school with a 1.88 GPA, but now I teach college. Ha ha, suckers. Well, maybe I'm the sucker. I bet you all had fun vacations while I was sitting in summer school.
And here's a photo of my going away party for the Marines in May 2001!!!
(Perry Hall High School Alumni, all.)