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Blasts from the Past

December 10, 2008

Its strange when your past suddenly comes up and hits you in the face, especially when you weren’t expecting it. But that’s exactly what’s happened to me over the past 24 hours when a former classmate posted a bunch of old photos online. Yes indeed. Thanks to the marvels of scanners and Facebook, my youth – as well as the those of the people I grew up with – are available online for everyone to see.

It’s not that I really mind, as these are just class photos – mostly from our elemenatary school days – and I only appear once. What’s more interesting – and potentially troubling – is how few of my fellow classmates I can readily identify in the photos. I mean, my school – and my town, for that matter – weren’t that big, and I spent hours and years with these people. Sure, I may not have been friendly with everyone I grew up with, but I expected to remember a lot more of them by sight than I do. Maybe it’s because some of these people moved away when they were young or we just never really spent any time together throughout our youth. I don’t know.

What’s even more interesting about these photos than the pictures themselves (trust me, the 70s were an ugly time in America), is reading the threads of my fellow classmates as they go about trying to identify every one and hearing stories about those people I’ve lost track of over time. Some seem to have moved on to successful careers while others apparently died too young. There have been marriages, children and divorces. All the things we expect from modern life, except that they’ve happened to people you’ve know since you were five. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised – I’ve been though my own share of ups and downs over the years, but still, it catches you off guard when you hear some unexpected fact about a former friend.

Anyway – it’s been an interesting trip down memory lane over the past day, but it’s a road I don’t feel a need to travel again for awhile.

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