I’ve been thinking about high school a lot lately as I’ll be attending two 20th reunions next month. First I went to public school, and many of the people at that reunions will be (the grownup version of) kids I went to school with starting in Kindergarten; some I even went to nursery school with. Then I went to boarding school, and those are the people I graduated with. Either way I’m excited to see everyone all grown up but hopefully not too much.
One of the classics on most high school reading lists is Lord of the Flies. It is the kind of book that most people read because it’s required, but continue to reference because it contains so many universally relatable elements. The book is about having good intentions, but lacking execution in a plan; about being an individual versus going along with the herd; about kicking sand and throwing stones; about physical vulnerability, social convention and metamorphosis. It’s about regression, savagery and friendship.
I think I’d be hard pressed to find a person who doesn’t remember the conch.
It will be my turn to speak tomorrow night, and to be honest: I’m terrified. I’ll be telling a story that is dear to me and that I’ve told dozens of times, but I won’t have notes and I’ll have to trust that I’ll be able to stand on a stage in front of people and tell a story without losing my place. I’ll have to trust that I’ll remember to include the funny parts, that I won’t get bogged down in the minutiae, and that I won’t be boring.
Terrified seems so dramatic, and I know that usually we’re just afraid of what we don’t know, but I’ve never done this before, so….there you have it. William Golding infused so much wisdom into Lord of the Flies including this gem that is perfect for right now:
Fear can’t hurt you any more than a dream.
It makes me smile just thinking about it. Maybe I’ll sharpie it onto my arm tomorrow as a temporary tattoo.
The theme for the event Tell Us Something (http://www.tellussomething.org/) is different every time, but this quarter it’s I GOT LUCKY. I thought it might be too silly, but just couldn’t resist asking for a time slot to tell the story of how I GOT LUCKY. I can really think of no easier (or better) story to tell than the one of meeting the guy who’d change my life. And guess who’ll be making a guest appearance (in a bar) tomorrow night?
Here’s us just after I brought him home: