Sunday, August 12, 2012

Class of 1972

Photo courtesy of RBC website.

This coming weekend I will be attending my 40th high school reunion. ha ha ha ha  That is REEE-DICULOUS!! There is no way it has been FORTY YEARS since I graduated from Red Bank Catholic High School. Why, that would make me fifty seven years old.

Oh, wait. I AM fifty seven years old. How did that happen?!?!

In the past forty years I have gone through four years of college, married, learned to drive, had four children, moved nine times, traveled, graduated from nursing school, buried my husband, got my Master’s degree, built a successful career, lost my beloved grandparents, my best friend and my mother, fell in love and had my heart broken, converted from Catholicism to the Episcopal Church, bought my dream home, became disabled by multiple sclerosis, became estranged from almost all of my family and, finally, have focused once again on writing, which I have known since childhood I was meant to do.

I guess that is a way to make forty years go by quickly.

Those are just the most momentous occurrences in my personal life. That summary does not reflect all the wonderful friends I have made along the way and still have. It doesn’t include all the quiet, lovely moments that bring true joy to our lives: my children’s, and, now, my grandchildren’s laughter, good books, perfect cups of tea, impeccable martinis, shared confidences, spontaneous expressions of affection, bonds of understanding and empathy. There have been so, so many of these over forty years as well.

The classmates I will gather with are a big-hearted, kind, generous group of people. Some have been close for all these years, some of us have rarely seen each other, but the welcome is warm for everyone. There is no teenage angst, insecurity or need to be cool. That is, thank heaven, all in the past. Now we meet on common ground, veterans of forty additional years of struggles and accomplishments, with an appreciation of how short life is and what is truly important. I think it is safe to say that for all of us, it has been quite a ride.

Hooray that we’re still here to celebrate surviving and thriving.

In 1972:

The French Connection won the Best Movie of the Year.

The Candy Man by Sammy Davis was the number one song the week we graduated.

Gas averaged 55 cents a gallon.

Average new home cost $27, 550.00.

Average income was $11,000.

Wrangler jeans cost $12.00.

There was no Monmouth Mall, it was still the Monmouth Shopping Center.

Unemployment was 5.9%.

The Newark Evening News and the Red Bank Register were still being published.

Carole King swept the Grammy’s and won Record (It’s too Late), Album (Tapestry) and Song of the Year (You’ve Got a Friend).

First class stamps cost 10 cents.

Gallon of milk was $1.10.

All in the Family was the number one TV show.

And the Casey’s Class of 1972 entered history.


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brokenteepee said...

It's 35 years for me this year so we are not so far apart in age.

Have fun!

Muffie said...

Enjoy your reunion -- those were the days!!

Marie said...

Patty - Ah, you're just a baby!! lol Are you going to yours? Did you have a good time in high school?

Muffie - they certainly were, but I don't know if I'd want to repeat them!

Anji said...

I was class of 72 too. Never been to a reunion - I wonder what they are all doing now.

I'm coming up to 57, there are so many advantages to being older.

Have a great weekend!

ExposeYourBlog! Joining up bloggers for over two years.

Alice Seidel said...

Wow Marie I really like your blog. I will be married 40 yrs in October and don't feel old enough for that. I saw your post from 2 yrs ago about being married in the Mansion Chapel; I celebrated 25 yrs with a mass there. So beautiful that chapel, like a jewel hidden away.
Funny how everythings ebb and flow, but writing never seems to wane.

Jane Turley said...

I've never been to a school reunion - pride would force me to go on a diet which is far too much effort! I did get some feedback on one a few years back - apparently the guy who was the school heart throb looked like a washed out dishcloth and the equivalent girl had so much botox she was almost unrecognisable. These are the sort of astute observations I like:)))

Marie said...

Alice - Hi! Thanks for stopping by and for leaving your comment! Congratulations on being married for forty years! That is quite an accomplishment these days. It is nice to hear from someone who has actually been to the place I described. The Mansion Chapel is truly unique.

Jane - I think I have no pride any more! lol That is too funny about your two class icons! The really funny thing is in another 15 years or so, that doesn't matter any more, you're all glad to see each other. Probably we are all just so happy we're still alive!! lol

Pat Voetsch said...

I too have never been to a class reunion, although I heard through the grapevine that one was held in 1990. They did not have Facebook then to be able to track down people. I am not offended by not being invited. I have since then found some classmates, also through Facebook. For me, it is now 45 years. I graduated at 16. It felt so young to be 16 and have to become an adult. It has been interesting ride! See you at your reunion tonight. Hope the weather improves.

Barbara By The Book said...

40 Years??? Wait, isn't the prom coming up? Admittedly, RBC was a big bad part of my life. It was hard to fit in because I didn't come from St. James or any other Catholic grade school. Hard because we didn't go to a beach club. Yet joyous because I ended those years with not one but two lifelong friends.
Last night was hard again. I buried my husband 3 weeks ago. Did I want people looking at me...pitying me? I'm such a sham as the grieving widow. Would they see through me? But it was easy because I brought my security blanket-one of those lifeling friends.
You're right Marie. The years have made our group great, generous, and certainly gregarious. They're not shy to share their joys about children and grandchildren. They weren't afraid to share their pain over losing spouses. Who knew there were so many of us in the 50 or so there? Some are battling illnesses that shake me to my bones.
I look forward to todays activities, The tour, the mass, and catching up with more of our fellow Caseys. And I hope ten years from now to be sharing a cup of tea, or a beer, or maybe my walker with all of them!

Kathy Ruhl said...

Marie, I was thrilled to see you on Friday night. Despite your ups and downs you continue to be upbeat and a joy to be with. (Is it okay to end a sentence with a preposition?....Sr. Francesca would probably have a fit) I am sure that as the years go on we will continue to be the close class that we are, and find the time and means to get together. Stay well, my friend. Next reunion - wheelchair races down the boardwalk!!

Marie said...

Pat - Sixteen is TOO young to become an adult. You were just a baby. But apparently a smart one to graduate so young!! I am looking forward to properly getting together soon so we can really talk. :)

Barbara - Everyone was looking at you with affection and pride, not pity, that you are holding your head up high and LIVING. You are not a sham, your grief is real, how could it not be after so long, no matter what the circumstances.

Our class is amazing in the tragedies they have suffered, but they ENDURE. They live life to the fullest while they have it. A truly remarkable group of people. And you are one of them. I am proud to know you.

Kathy - you are so, so sweet!! Thanks for the lovely compliments. When you are saying such nice things, you can end a sentence with any kind of word you want!! lol I'll tell you, I am bummed by having MS, I hate it and what it has cost me with every cell of my being, but I am humbled by what others in our class are struggling with. I was so happy to be there Friday, I couldn't have been anything but joyful and grateful. With the welcome and help I received, how could I have been anything less than that? I am so lucky in so many ways. Not the least of which is knowing you! xoxo

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