People Reveal The Most Surprising Thing That Happened At Their High School Reunion.
High school is one of those times in your life that for better or for worse, you will always remember. But it's hard to know what to respect when you revisit those old peers years later.
Here, people share the thing that surprised them most after attending their high school reunion.
1/24. Met my future wife. We hated each other in high school, but at the reunion everything clicked.
2/24. Not my high school reunion, but my dad's.
A couple years after my parents got divorced my dad goes to his high school reunion and runs into his prom date. They catch up, she'd been the one that got away and all, and it turns out she's also recently divorced from husband #2. Some things don't work out like you wish they would, you know?
They agree to meet for drinks and dinner again soon, and they do. And then more dating, and then next thing I know I'm spending every other weekend driving with my dad across the state to hang out with her. But it's not bad. She's friendlier than the other girls he'd tried dating, and she's getting my dad to be more relaxed and not drink as much.
I leave for college and they get married. He and his band mates decide to get the band back together for reunion "tour" at the next class reunion. The following summer reunion, the band show was a hit. It was like seeing my dad as a teenager; they caused trouble all weekend lighting off fireworks and drinking and my grandma covered for them ("No officer, haven't heard anything! Just playing solitaire on my computer"). They played all night long and decide it's going to be a yearly thing, so many of their old classmates stayed int he area and they love playing and hanging out.
My dad got the girl, got the band back together, and got his life back in line thanks to a couple class reunions. It wasn't a ten year reunion, mind you, sometimes you'll have to wait a little bit longer to get the happy ending you're hoping for.
3/24. There was a discussion brought up about how "you don't remember the nice things done to you in high school, but those mean, disgusting things/comments haunt you forever" one of the popular girls said "I'm glad I never made anyone mad in school, I was friends with everyone!"
One of the most quiet, shy girls from school slams her drink and then pounds the glass on the table as loud as shit. "Are you kidding me?!? You were the single most evil person in the entire school! You tortured me every single day with your snide comments about my looks and style!"
The popular girl looked around the room like, "Who's this girl talking to?" Every single person there stared back at her.
4/24. I had a very interesting and unexpected experience at my 10 year reunion.
To start, I was a little metal/goth kid that went to a high school in the midwest with the best football team in the state. You can accurately assume what I thought of my overall high school experience from that. When the 10 year reunion came around, I was very hesitant to go. I knew that none of my good friends would be there, and it would just be filled with the people I thought I loathed a decade prior, so what was the point? But for some reason I went anyway, and it was absolutely wonderful.
At no other point in your life can you walk into a huge bustling room, and instantly recognize the faces of hundreds of people all at once. These are people that like it or not, you grew up with and around, and seeing them again for the first time in a decade hits you like a wave of nostalgia. Memories of my youth came rushing back that I had completely forgotten about, and I felt a strange sense of being "home" again, for better or worse. It felt safe and peaceful. I had maybe one good friend show up, and I didn't necessarily connect with anybody else that was there, but I still loved seeing them all.
I also completely unanticipated how many people I had forgotten about. When you think about attending your HS reunion, you think of all the very animated characters in your history; the popular jock, the bully, the trouble maker, etc. What you forget about are all the quiet people in between, and how many of them you actually liked. People you might have had only one class with, or acquaintances you sat next to at lunch every now and then - I liked a lot more people than I remembered. These were the people that filled in the missing pieces, and added context to my history. Somehow this completely unexpected group ended up being the most special part of the reunion for me.
So if you're debating going to your reunion, I'd highly suggest it for the time-traveling sensation alone.
5/24. Nobody changed at all.
I left Ireland three days after my leaving certification, and happened to move back a month before the reunion party. I hadn't seen a single person in the 10 intervening years, and everyone was basically the exact same person as they had been in school. Better-dressed, more confident, less awkward - but essentially the exact same people.
I had been dreading it, because I was never a popular kid in school - but it actually felt wonderful to be among those people again. After high school, you never really get to know anyone that well again. Add that to me having spent 10 years being an immigrant in various places, and that made re-connecting with these people extra sweet. All of the people with massive chips on their shoulders - they didn't show up. So the only people who were there were the ones who were as excited as I was.
6/24. The popular cheerleader showed up at my 10 year reunion. She's an expensive yoga instructor in Miami now. Schadenfreude: denied.
7/24. People who couldn't have cared less about me in high school were excited to see me again. I still don't know why.
That one girl I almost lost my virginity to? She got really hot.
The one guy who was always kind of a prick because he came from a wealthy family? Nearly-full male pattern baldness. Yes, at 28 years old.
Everyone who is gay isn't afraid to say so anymore.
Very few people showed up with their spouses/partners.
8/24. I work for a company that puts together high school reunions and have worked at over 50 of them in my time there.
10 year: High school all over again. You can tell who was popular, and you can see most people fall back into their cliques. There is always someone who knows no one and feels awkward trying to find someone to talk to.
20 year: People have kids. Its mostly popular kids now and ones that were really involved in school activities meeting their old friends. Theres less people awkwardly walking around alone.
30 year: Its whittled down to popular kids and student government kids now. Women desperately trying to reclaim their youth and show how young they 'still' look. If you didn't know everyone was in the same age range, you would think there was a 20 year range of ages.
40 year: Some of the ladies try to age gracefully and still look good, while others just try to look as 'young' as possible. Men showing off new younger wives, and talking about all the people who have died. Still student government and popular people.
9/24. How mellow and normal most people became. People I thought were jerks or enemies turned out to be surprisingly nice and awesome.
Except for the loud preppy kids. Most of them stayed obnoxious.
10/24. My brother went to high school with someone who eventually became a Major League Baseball player. He told me that this guy was a douche in high school, and then at the 10 year he flew in by helicopter to show off.
11/24. I went from someone in HS who felt he always had to hide, afraid I'd be embarrassed or made fun of, to someone in my adult life who was successful and confident... Yet at my HS reunion I still felt like I didn't belong. Honestly it was a bit jolting because I felt I had changed so much but yet it didn't matter a bit. You always think "if I could go back and re-live those days..." but my conclusions was that I'd still hate HS and the mentality of kids that age.
12/24. My dad went to his 30 year high school reunion. A woman he had had a one night stand with right after graduation approached. Her: "Hey, remember me?" Him: "Oh, yeah! How's it going?" Her: "Good. We have a 29 year old daughter. I have her phone number if you want to call her."
They had slept together right after graduation, he then moved away. She got pregnant, put the girl up for adoption and never told him. The daughter had just found her birth mother right before the reunion, so she figured that was as good a time as any to let him know. She brought a photo album of her growing up and gave it to my dad. The girl looked EXACTLY like my dad when she was a teenager, and EXACTLY like my dad's sister as an adult, so there was no question it was his kid.
His next question: "Oh my gosh, am I a grandfather?" Her: "No, she's a lesbian." Him: "Oh thank goodness!"
It was hard on my family at first. It all happened before my mom and dad had met, but it was still difficult coming to terms with it. We decided to meet her and see what was up. She is AWESOME. Like really one of the coolest people I know. Great sense of humor. She is now a part of our family.
13/24. People just went to their lunch tables they sat at during high school. Odd.
14/24. Skinny nerdy guy got busted for selling a couple hundred thousand dollars worth of Adobe software in college and spent 15 months in prison. He came out super buff.
15/24. One of my neighbors growing up was that super motivated Type A do everything types. Co-valedictorian, captain of the hockey team, gifted musician...just always working.
10 year reunion, went just how we all expected. Full ride to Yale, Harvard MBA, six figure Wall Street job, gorgeous fiance... and he seemed utterly miserable.
10 years later, 20th reunion. He got sick of it all, quit his job, sold his house, got divorced, and got out of town. He now owns a pig farm in Upstate New York, spends his days working the farm, brewing beer, and hiking in the forest... and I've never met a happier, more satisfied person in my life.
16/24. One girl who sat next to me in english class in junior and senior year. Thick coke bottle glasses, a bird's nest of thick curly hair. She was always very nice and very smart, but super quiet and introverted.
I was an extroverted, outgoing jerk so I used to ask her to read parts when we studied shakespeare, invited her into my group for group projects and made her take speaking roles, that kind of thing. She was never really comfortable talking about herself and we never hung out outside of class, so I left school not knowing much about her except that she was smart, quick to grin at a joke, and had strong feelings about "The Crucible".
Ten years later, this gorgeous woman shows up to our reunion. Smoking hot redhead and sparkling blue eyes. That goofy teenage grin had turned into a confident, knowing smile. She was jaw-droppingly stunning.
We talked for a good hour. She was just a late bloomer. I apologized for always volunteering her for public speaking and she said it was one of the things that made her start to confront her shyness. She ended up going to an Ivy league school and became a journalist, of all things.
I was happily engaged by my 10 year reunion and well settled into my career. She lived in Africa on assignment from a wire service. We were in very different places in our lives and I was and am happy to count her as a friend.
We still chat from time to time.
17/24. We didn't have a 10 year but we did have a 22 year. The year we all turned 40. It was so much fun. We rented the summer camp we all went to growing up for the whole weekend. People brought their kids. We got wasted and told stories all night. We were all older and fatter, but nobody had changed a bit.
18/24. The kid who was stealing motorcycles and selling them for parts is now a police officer. He was never accused or convicted of course but I knew that for a fact. Let's hope people sometimes do change.
19/24. Hardly anyone showed up. We had a class of 500, there were 25 people there. We all just sort of sat there, got pissed, then went home.
20/24. I was friendly with this guy K freshman/sophomore year, I think. He was super quiet, shy, incredibly studious, chubby kid. Even some teachers would be like 'lighten up, relax.' He came out of his shell senior year and we kind of stopped being friends because he was hanging out with the 'cool' kids and having parties where people could drink, etc, and I was super square and uninterested.
So at my reunion, he was this x20. He is now a 'hotshot' kind of guy in DC working for a 'strategies' company. (Just googled it, no idea what they do). Anyway, at the reunion he was mostly okay UNTIL he chugged a ton of beers. Some folks had left, but the rest of left at the reunion had gathered around while he picked up a yearbook. He proceeded to crap talk about EVERY PERSON in our year whether they were there to defend themselves or not. This was a super uncool kid freshman year (who nobody really disliked or made fun of, actually) just bashing everyone for weight, being weird, being uncool, being too cool, etc. My boyfriend was with me (he did not go to HS with me) and was so uncomfortable the entire time.
21/24. It's only been 5 years since I graduated and one of the girls in my class is a freaking rocket engineer. Interning for NASA.
Like what!? She used to cry about that douchebag she was dating. We did yoga in PE and talked about stupid high school girl things.
And to think if I'd actually seriously applied myself it would have been possible for me too. Good on her.
22/24. Had my 10 year last November. A lot of the guys looked a lot older, a lot of the girls looked the same. There were a few girls that no one remembered from high school that got really hot, and there were some cool guys in high school that didn't look so good.
23/24. One kid was fairly small, quiet and goofy. Nice kid, but nothing too special about him. We hung out a few times at speech/drama tournaments.
I had wondered what happened to him. Turns out he grew quite a lot and became quite popular. His acting career took him far. He's been in several huge films, including X-Men.
We knew him as Jimmy. Today he goes by a more mature name of James - James Marsden.
I hope he's still a cool, goofy guy deep down that I remember from the few times we hung out.
24/24. This one guy used to be kind a of a bully, seemed not to care about school, had bad grades, skipped class and did some drugs in school. I wasn't bothered by him and didn't interact with the guy that much as I wasn't a target of his antics.
If you asked me how I thought he turned out, I would've guess and was now doing some kind of manual work and had no education.
Turns out he co-created one of the most recognizable clothing brand in my country and has multiple brick and mortar locations. His brand is worn by some big names. He's a successful businessman and he's probably worth millions.
I think it's pretty cool he turned out that way!
You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar, or so the saying goes.
The same can be said for your interactions with cops, most of whom are perfectly happy to let minor infractions slide––When was the last time you were actually ticketed for jaywalking?––provided you're not a total Karen should you interact them.
Your local police officer likely doesn't care about jaywalking or the fact that you went five miles over the speed limit unless you give him a reason to, as we learned when Redditor Takdel asked police officers: "What stupid law have you enforced just because someone was an a-hole?"