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It's common knowledge that when you leave high school all the various characters that fill your yearbook will remain frozen in time until you thaw them out either via email or the unintentional encounter when you look your worst and least expect it.

The first game of the football season in 2003 was horrible. First, I am overweight by too many pounds and thus am much heavier than the last time my college or high school compadres saw me. Second, sitting in right behind us in the stadium is my ex-boyfriend. He looked dorky, but that doesn't make up for the fact that I looked sweaty and fat. The sun laughed at my plight and shown brighter than it had any right to and so, hot and tired, I fled for the cool shade of the concession area of the football stadium. As I sat sweating and bemoaning my luck at running into my ex while looking so heinous, a peppy voice shouted, "Shelley?" and a bouncing blonde rushed cutely to my side. "It's Katie. I went to Pelham." I wanted to say that I knew who she was and I was only being quiet in the desperate hope that she would not see me if I stood still enough. That only works with bears, I think, but I try it with all types of species, including popular kids from high school. So far, no luck. We chatted about the upcoming high school reunion, which she was SO excited about and had already joined a gym in anticipation! "Isn't that a hoot?" She really was very nice, even if I sound bitter.

The high school reunion came and went without me or my two friends that I managed to keep up with over the years. Fast forward to January of this year (yes, BOTH weeks that have passed!)...I receive a random email from saying that a girl from my high school is trying to reach me. Intrigued, I emailed her and found out that one of our old friends, Reese, is trying to reach all the kids that he was friends with in 10th grade (he moved away in 11th grade). I have now emailed with three of my old friends.

All of that set up is for this one point...

They asked, "What have you been doing with your life?"

Did you hear that? That's me sighing.

No, the dog isn't passing gas. I mean, seriously, that's me sighing...again.

What have I been doing with my life?

I will tell you what I've been doing for about four and a half years. I've been working my fucking ass off. I've been slaving away at a fucking job that I fucking hate and I fucking want to quit but...guess what...I'm not qualified (no "fucking" needed that time) for anything else. What can I do but write and I can't do that professionally because I don't have the balls. I don't believe in myself. I'm scared. Most of all, though, most of fucking all, I am too damn tired when I get home to think of anything but eating and sleeping. I am exhausted mentally and physically. I am sick of this fucking rat race. All I want is to win the lottery or, better yet, write a book. Yes, I could make time. Yes, I could find a job that is better. I'm not asking for advice (but thanks for your thoughts and prayers). I just want this stupid waiting to be over. I want my husband to get a job (he graduates school in MAY and he will hopefully have a job shortly thereafter). These high school people want to get together and have lunch. Thank God that I live in another city. I want to walk into a dinner with all those old friends and blow them away with how pretty and successful I am, which I am currently not. And I know that's superficial and blah blah blah. It's what I want, okay?!

So, that's my whiney baby, stupid story for today.

"What have you done with your life?" Bite me.

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The following comments are for "Freakin' High School"
by Shel

Great sarcastic humor.

Also, the brutal honesty of the last long paragraph can't be found in many places

"...I was only being quiet in the desperate hope that she would not see me if I stood still enough. That only works with bears, I think, but I try it with all types of species, including popular kids from high school."

I really like that line and the last line in the story really brings it all together. Nice style.

( Posted by: Lingering [Member] On: January 14, 2005 )

Shel, I freakin' love it!
I CAN relate! As my hubby would say, I think we went to different schools together.

After being named "Most Artistic" in the high school yearbook, I ended up with a degree in Mass Communication. Never got a job in broadcasting. Got a Master of Science in Teaching. Never got a full-time teaching job. Now, twenty years after high school, I'm the administrative assistant at my old teachers' credit union. The gulping sound you hear is me repeatedly swallowing my pride. I'm getting better at keeping it down.

The good news is that most of the time, I'm actually happy! My job's not so bad - leaves me time & energy to write & otherwise try to be creative. And the rest of my life is pretty cool. Don't despair! "Our life is more than our work, and our work is more than our jobs." (From a t-shirt belonging to my magnificent mother-in-law. Original source unknown to me. Anyone know it?)

Delightful rant! And go ahead - blame the dog! I always do! ; )


( Posted by: LinnieRed [Member] On: January 15, 2005 )

freakin A!

( Posted by: drsoos [Member] On: January 16, 2005 )

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