Reunion News Update - February 8, 2002 - There are some new classmates links and pictures on the Links page on the web site. Go to: http://edmullen.net/abington/ahs_reunion_links.php
Also, a few more updates have been made to the Attendees list. Check it out at:
The total number of reservations to date is 93. That does not include spouses or guests. The grand total is approximately 135 people for our reunion at this point. We really want everyone who can attend to be there.
We've negotiated a slight extension of the deadline with the venue so you now have a little extra time to send in your reservation. But not much! And you have also been granted a bit of extra time to send in your biographical data for inclusion in the Reunion Directory.
I was preparing this update and I got to musing about this whole reunion thing. I personally think that 93 classmates confirming reservations is pretty good. Still, I'd like to see a lot more of you on that Saturday night.
Oh, make no mistake about it, I'll have a good time. And I'll enjoy visiting with everyone who attends. I've been lucky in participating in the organizing of this reunion because I've actually made new friends. I know that some of them have zero memory of me from 1968. And for a few of them I've had to use our yearbook to coax long-dormant memories out of hiding in my head. So, on both sides, there are delights in stirring old memories but, also, delight in discovering so many of my peers turned out to be so interesting and normal. Hey, it was the 60s, ok? Sometimes I wonder how any of us survived it.
One big reason why I am attracted to, even eager for, this event is to meet people who are strangers. Strangers with whom I share a history. Think about that. Oh, sure. There will be people there of whom I have vivid memories. Others whose faces and names I remember but didn't really know, other than to smile and say hi. Still others who, to the best of my knowledge, I may never have even met. But we all share a time, a social and cultural era, and all the ensuing years. And a current time in life. A generation, if you will. It's a unique opportunity.
Am I trying to convince you to come to the reunion? Nope. That's for you to decide. But I do know that there are some of you who are on the fence. Some who can't quite figure out the allure. Who can't understand why it might be a good thing, a necessary thing, or, perhaps, just a lot of fun. So, allow me my self-indulgence for a minute or two more.
I am, for those of you who know me not at all, into reflection, analysis, and pondering the wherefore and why of things. I also enjoy serendipity. I am not, however, given to regrets. In fact, I have made a point in my life to abhor regrets. I see little point in it. Life happens. That has been my way since I can remember. Until my philosophy changed, at least a little bit.
30 years had gone by since 1968, 30 years in which I had virtually no contact with anyone from the Abington High School Class of 1968. I won't go into the details (I promised someone I would make this a short Ed Mullen story). Funny stuff has always happened to me. Maybe it's because I'm open to funny stuff happening to me, maybe it's fate, maybe well, never mind. Some stuff happened in the mid 90s that led me to send my address in to the Alumni Association. And then, in 1998, I saw a little item in the Alumni Association newsletter that caught my eye. One thing, well, actually, one email, led to another. And now I have as a best friend someone who had been lost to me for 30 years. And that taught me to regret. I'm capable of making huge mistakes but one thing I'm pretty good at is not making the same huge mistake twice. Or, as my personal motto goes: "I may be slow, but I get there!"
My point is this. After luck led me there, I made the effort, I took a chance. And after that one incredibly fortunate success I got involved in the reunion efforts. In that effort I have conversed with close to two hundred of our classmates. Some briefly, even perfunctorily, some just cordially or humorously, others at length and with great gratification. Those last, well, as Robert Frost said in The Road Not Taken: and that has made all the difference.
Because I chose to take a little detour down that divergent path, I've had the privilege to:
So. Why come to a 34th Reunion of the Abington High School Class of 1968? Well, the flippant answer is: Why not?
Another answer is that, hey, you might get lucky too and experience some of the magic that I've been blessed with in this whole adventure. But, having already gotten more out of this than I ever deserved or could have expected, why am I going? I mean, haven't I already been struck by the lightning? Might not the actual event turn out to be sort of anti-climactic for me?
Ok, here's the deal. Here's my take on it, for me. And as Dennis Miller says: Hey, that's just my opinion, I could be wrong. The bottom line on this.
On March 16th in Pennsylvania I will spend an evening with at least 92 of my high school classmates. For the most part, strangers. People who I would pass, or who would pass me, on the street without a flicker of recognition. People with whom I may have no known common interests or beliefs. And people with whom I share some part of my foundation and past. I cannot think of a more unique and fascinating opportunity to have fun. That is what I intend to do. Take one evening out of my life and go have fun. Spend one evening meeting a bunch of strangers with whom I can connect on some basic level that I, verbose as I am, cannot adequately enunciate to make much sense of it to anyone else. In fact, my wife and some of my best friends really don't get it at all. They think it's just another one of those funny things that Ed gets all worked up about.
So, don't get worked up. Think of it as one night out of your life, one night with possibility. Think of it as a once-in-a-lifetime chance for a unique evening of fun. Afterwards, if you decide you don't like them, you don't ever have to see them again. Or, if you're lucky, you just might make a new best friend. Maybe you just have a little fun and a weekend away from all the mundane issues of your life.
Such a deal! And it's only $55.00 per person!!! ;-)
All the best,
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