You Can't Go Home Again - (and probably shouldn't)

During the three years I attended North Miami Senior High School (1966Ė1968), I was not (what one would consider part of the in-crowd, a.k.a the "cool kids."  I wasn't a football player; so I was never able to "date" any of the hot looking cheerleaders. My dad wasn't a lawyer so I wasn't able to run in the same circles as the kids with the nice clothes and new cars. I was just an average kid who was preoccupied with finding South Florida's perfect  wave.  

But in June 1968, I bid adios to those hallowed halls of hell to enter the real world.  Its pretty obvious by reading this story, you can tell I was not really one of the "movers and shakers" at my school. I (kinda sorta) marched to the beat of a different drummer (probably John Bonham*) and I didn't give a ratís ass about participating in any insipid high school activities.

So answer me this loyal readers... Why am I spending big money and squandering valuable vacation time just to attend my 30th high school reunion?  Am I an idiot, a masochist or just a glutton for punishment?  I really donít know.

* For those of you, who are musically challenged, John Bonham played drums for Led Zeppelin

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The LATE - Rick Shaw

On Friday night, I attended a cocktail party reception hosted by an old (thought to be dead) local radio DJ legend Rick Shaw. Shaw, circulated throughout the crowd of 200+ all night long, shaking the hands of men and hugging the large breasted women. The skinny one's were all but ignored.  With each shake of the hand or crunch of the bosom, all the demented DJ said was Ö "Hey - Iím Rick Shaw and Iím 68 years old!"  

And when the old fart wasn't shaking and crunching, he sequestered himself in a dark corner, stuffing his face with cold hors d'oeuvres.

I too spent most of that evening sucking down $5.00 domestic beer and circulating the crowd in search of old friends.  But as luck would have it, every time I turned around I kept bumping into more and more of them; the god damn "cool kids."   I tried real hard that evening to put aside my prejudices and complete disdain for these egotistical pukes.  I made a point of reintroducing myself to a few of them with whom I share some history - some as far back as second grade.

Without exception, in every case, these rude assholes acted as if I was a panhandler in search of spare change. I have to admit that it was somewhat gratifying to see how some of these (once hot babes) have aged. One in particular, an ex-cheerleader, looked like the poster child for Anorexia.  This womanís face was pulled so tight from numerous plastic surgeries that her smile literally stretched from ear to ear.  

I have come to the conclusion that they were assholes in '68 and they're still assholes 30 years later.  One of the few exceptions... my friend George Butticaz... (far right) 

But Wait... There's More >>>

Having been absent from those hallowed halls of hell for 30 years, I decided to pay the old place a visit.  Aside from barbed wire and graffiti, it's just way I remembered it - or so I thought.  Consumed with this burning desire to return, just inside the huge double entry doors I was greeted by this very large woman, armed with a chemical deterrent and what appeared to be a Louisville Slugger baseball bat.  I explained to her that I graduated from here 30 years ago and was interested in walking around the grounds... for old times sake.  She stretched out the huge bat and pointed me to the Principals Office.  She then muttered something about getting a hall pass.  It seemed rather odd that NOW I was getting a hall pass but I was a student... I NEVER had a hall pass.

Having secured the hall pass, I meandered the corridors in utter amazement.  I had actually NO RECOLLECTION of having attended this school.  Nothing looked familiar.   I seemed to be constantly looking over my shoulders.   With every step I took, there were eyes watching my every move.  Thoughts of a modern day "Blackboard Jungle" ran through my mind.    I just thank goodness that I didn't have to send my kids to my old alma mater

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But there was some good stuff along the way...
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Don't assume that just because I am spewing forth with such a venomous diatribe that I didn't have a good time.

Leaving Fran back in Charlotte...

I set out a week before the reunion in a hot little convertible roadster on a one-man odyssey to reclaim, my youth.  Yeah right!  I had all these visions of buxom blondes in distress all along Interstate 95 just waiting for some cool dude like me to come along in a hot sports car and lend a hand.

Hell, the only person I saw in distress pushed a shopping cart and would apparently work for food.  So I threw him a half-eaten Whopper and said "Take the day off... it's on me"

For the most part I had a wonderful time.  I managed to play some golf, did a little deep sea fishing got a god-awful sunburn and saw lots of old friends and relatives along the way.  Fran did finally catch up with me in Ft. Lauderdale and we drove back together.  And as luck would have it, the only hitchhikers out on the interstate were babes...  young, blond, buxom babes!