Friday, March 03, 2006

The Year of the Reunion

I'm not really a big fan of interacting with people outside of my cozy little group of buddies.

I tend to opt out of the "Oh, let's take the new guy out to lunch with us" thing. And I typically don't go for mixing otherwise unrelated groups of friends (been there, done that, still trying to convince one friend that the other friend is no longer a stuck up bitch...and that was 20 years ago). I typically have no interest in reuniting with anyone I may have known anytime before now, hence the stealth settings I apply to every people-meeting website I join. Yes, I know that seems like an oxymoron, but when I'm spending my money (or time or energy), I think I have the right to decide who I'm going to interact with. It started with Caller ID and now that whole "Right To Choose" thing has overtaken me.

So anyhoo...

The first day of 2006 I was sitting on my green couch, minding my own business, scrolling through my Caller ID to see who had been trying (in vain) to reach out and touch me. Much to my surprise, among the myriad calls from "Out of Area", "1-800-this-is-not-a-solicitation-call", and The Plain Dealer, there was a familiar name listed on the screen. It was the husband of a former friend. So after 60 seconds of staring at the phone, I decided that it was a freakish coincidence and kept it moving. (Well, I guess moving would be a stretch, since I was technically laying down on my green couch, as always.)

By now you may have deduced that this call was, in fact, not a freakish coincidence, and that in fact this former friend was trying to get in touch with me. You would be correct. Lo and behold the next day I was standing next to the phone when it rang and there was that name again.

(A brief history of this "friendship" might be appropriate here. This young lady & I had a pretty on-again-off-again relationship that started our Junior year of high school and ended in approximately 1998. She was always the person that decided that we were in the "off again" part of the friendship. Her various reasons included her distaste with my daily consumption of malt liquor, my decision to quit a job I was unhappy at, you know, the types of things that make or break most friendships. Now that I think about it, she was also the person that decided when we were in the "on again" part, too. And it always came as quite a surprise to me after being royally cussed out and told what a horrible person I was!)

So I listened to the voicemail message (which went on for at least 4 minutes) while making the face many of my friends have come to know and love. (The face usually indicates when my inner monologue is "Are you fucking kidding me?") I laughed. I probably said the previously referenced inner monologue out loud. I laughed some more. And I got back to the business of being lazy. A few days later I got an "urgent" call from my mother indicating that this same young lady had tracked her down also & left a similar message. "I'm trying to get in touch with her and I don't know if I have the right number so can you give her mine because I would really like to talk to her and we lost touch and blah, blah, blah." I laughed.

I didn't know it yet, but that set of voicemails kicked off THE YEAR OF THE REUNION (known to some as 2006).

Now at this point, you might be thinking to yourself, "Self, that PisceanPrincess sure seems neurotic - who would waste precious work hours blogging about one missed phone call?" But, no, dear reader, it gets worse.

From time to time I like to throw money up a wild goose's ass (often referred to as Internet Dating). So around Thanksgiving, I decided to try a new site. Much to my delight, this new site offered a "Stealth" privacy setting! (My description, not theirs.) Basically, what that means is that no one could IM, email, wink at, or otherwise communicate with me unless I approved them. That means I had to initiate contact with any of the dudes that looked reasonable. (Reasonable, in this case, means black, no kids, lives alone, and bachelor's degree.) That also means that, for the first time in my Internet Dating (I.D) experience, I had to...
(insert dramatic, foreshadowing music here)
Yes, this was a fine example of me "walking on the wild side." My worst I.D. nightmare involves some guy seeing my photo, knowing all of my turn ons/turn offs, and running into me in the grocery store, thinking "That's that girl from the I.D. site - I know all about her. She's a thespian, a CPA, a food snob, a........". The horror. But I did it. I went out on a limb. I threw caution to the wind.
And I ran across a guy that seemed pretty cool. According to his profile, he seemed to have some of the same interests and dislikes as me, he had no children, lived alone, gave off an employed vibe. So I contacted him. I went on and on about myself and how much it seemed that we had in common. He emailed me back to politely let me know that although his I.D. membership was still active, he had started dating someone and wanted to see where it went. He went on to say, "Hey, by the way, you look like someone I know. Did you go to (insert name of high school here)?"
I will spare you the background music, the panicked look on my face, the scurrying around to compare this dude's photo with yearbook photos from the late 80's. He was in my class and quite frankly, we weren't really friends. I had known his entire family since I was about 10 years old, but still not really friends. Well, I think we both immediately knew that this was not a love connection and we started the whole "So what have you been up to" thing that I hate so much. He proceeded to tell me that I had packed on quite a few pounds since high school and that I was getting pretty old. We never did go have that coffee.
Within minutes, my membership to said I.D. website was cancelled. "High-School-Dude" was by far the best available option on this site and none of the other people ever responded to me so I figured I might as well cut my losses and move on. (Maybe I should have used the picture on this site with the girl covered in chocolate! Next time.)
So fast forward to last week. My good buddy suggested that I become a member of When I asked her why on earth I would do that, she starting going on and on about reuniting with people you've lost touch with and "networking" and things like that. Naturally, I reminded my good buddy (from now on, I'll refer to her as Emerald. my good buddy takes way too long to type) that I had no interest in reuniting with anyone. We were all set to move on to a new conversation when I said "Can you have a blog on there?". "Why, yes" she replied, "you can".
I had heard of this website in news articles that cautioned parents that on this site, their children are sitting ducks for child predators. Well since that's not applicable to me, I went for it. Of course, within the first 24 hours, I found the "Settings" features that made me virtually invisible to anyone that I didn't invite into my private little web of madness. And the blogging began. It didn't take long for me to realize that the website was not really cut out for stealth-types like myself. It was obviously designed for people who want to be in touch with other people. Most importantly, it was way too hard for my friends to get on the damn site to read my stupid posts. And when they did, they could never get far without some stranger wanting to be their "friend". So I packed up my blog & moved it here. I left the other stuff out there in case anyone was a little late catching up to me.
I went back there this afternoon to tidy up a bit & leave the keys for the landlord and lo & behold, I had someone asking me if they could be my "friend". Now, I must admit, in a moment of silly curiosity, I did in fact do a search on my high school to see who was out there. I saw, I had 30 seconds of fond memories and then I logged off. Turns out, that whole high school searching thing goes both ways & my new "friend" was actually an old friend (no quotes) that I haven't talked to since approximately February of 1991.
It would be absolutely silly for me to rehash the reason why she & I lost contact. I mean really, that was a very very long time ago. And I'm positive that if she and I discussed it now, there would be much laughing and wondering why we waited so long to squash it.
However, this 3rd occurence has left me no choice. I must officially declare this T.Y.O.T.R. I am quite curious to see who I will reunite with next. And I'm hoping that 2007 (or even the last 3 quarters of 2006) will be The Year of The Mega Millions Jackpot, or The Year of The Appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show, or The Year of The Meeting of The Man Of My Dreams.
I'll keep you posted...


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