“Martin Q. Blank: Did you go to your reunion?
..Marcella: Yes, I did. It was just as if everyone had swelled.”
- Grosse Point Blank (1997)
Official Rhodes Reunions are as much fun as partying with your Dad. I’ve been to one. Only once, and never again. It was fun like an insurance seminar. None of the interesting people I’d really want to catch up wouldn’t be seen dead at a Rhodes-sponsored reunion anyway.
Laugh ‘til Beer Squirts Out Your Nose
As a rule, I usually hand-pick who I want to see, and meet them in a cosy bar in London, or at a skanky Jo’burg pub. Some old friends’ company has no shelf life. Conversation's easy like an old well-worn mix tape, where you both know what song’s coming next. In a heartbeat you’re finishing each other’s sentences, swapping obscure jokes and giggling at them like school kids passing notes under the desk in the in class. Those are nights are glorious fun, we always laugh ‘til we cry, and our stomachs hurt. Seeing the cherished old friends that helped shaped the sum of your soul is gloriously life affirming.
Exes That Haven’t Got Fat
Some exes should not be seen nor heard, particularly if they dumped me, and haven’t got fat. In an ideal world, those ones will be bigger than my postcode, with jowels and thick ankles. In an ideal world, I’d just walk up and say;’ Wow. It’s been ages. What have you been doing all this time... APART FROM EATING?!’ Seeing the old girlfriends that spurned you, and are now fat, is gloriously life affirming.
The Ones That Got Away...
... Are the ones you’ll never forget. I guess once a relationship starts, on some plane it never ends. It just carries on. Maybe you got married, maybe you broke up earlier than you did, maybe you shagged her sister. Whatever. Somewhere someplace else, those feelings never stop, they keep just going on an on, like a million flickering TV shows bouncing off the satellites, beaming into space.
Reunions bring on a heady mix a nostalgia and introspection. Some good, some bad. Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices have been half chance. So have everyone else's. We all muddle through somehow.
Amid the rigours of adulthood; the small work triumphs, shallower new friendships, and sane, pragmatic relationships of now hold up like a faded photocopy compared to those bright, shining times, idealised in recollection. Rhodes was heaven and hell, but sometimes I brood, and wonder if I was at my best in those years, with you people, in that place.