Sunday, November 21, 2010

At the Top of the Stretch

As of right now, the long-range forecast for the long (indicative of both the number of days that comprise it and how a lot of folks feel after spending time in closer-than-usual contact with various members of one's family) Thanksgiving weekend for us here 'NTSG is cold and clear. Was my sigh of relief audible just now? I am going to be doing a fair amount of running over the weekend - trotting like a turkey in Princeton on Thanksgiving morning, wishing that I had in fact been born to run in Freehold on Friday and channeling my inner Brian Fallon on Sunday and being nothing short of a sissified ninny I prefer not to run in the rain. Cold? Not a problem. Rain? Not so much.

Actually, however, in what I know will be classified as an upset, my principal reason for keeping my fingers crossed (thus excusing any typos) is that my bride has quite a shindig scheduled for Friday night. Margaret is Middlesex High School Class of 1980 (Go Blue Jays!) and has organized this year's reunion: the Big 3-0. Honoring our mutual commitment to not attend one another's reunions I shall be accompanied by Ian Anderson on the flute as I sit this one out. Besides, I already know two of Margaret's classmates and am very fond of both of them. I would hate to ruin my spotless record with the Class of '80, which I could very well do if required to encounter them en masse. Thank you but no.

Apparently when people put together reunions they form committees. For the 25th reunion my class just had in October, the laboring oar was manned (or womanned as it were) by Karen with a hearty assist by Lee. The rest of us? We paid our money and showed up where Karen and Lee told us to show up.

For Margaret's class, the "committee" looks quite a lot like the beautiful woman to whom I am married. I have a very distinct recollection of way back when in the Spring she first agreed to get involved in this being told that there was going to be some sort of collaborative effort undertaken. It has not shaken out that way at all. Instead she has knocked herself out arranging for the location - including the menu, the entertainment, the decorations and even some gifts/prizes for her fellow alums. It has turned out to be quite a massive undertaking. Apparently my understanding that 98.7% of all people born here 'NTSG live here until death has been erroneous. Who knew? Quite a few of her classmates have busted out and moved away - and by that I mean to points further away on the horizon line than the Brooks (Green or Bound). Margaret has channeled her inner Brenda Lee Johnson to locate people all over the state, the country and - in the case of at least two of her fellow '80 Jays - overseas.

She awakens this morning staring squarely at the home stretch. By this time next weekend, all of this will be a memory.....and if history is any guide so shall 98.7% of her classmates until six months prior to their 35th reunion. While I suppose a better person would root for one and all to have a good time, unless this is your first visit to this particular rodeo you are painfully aware of the fact that a better person does not receive his mail at this address. I am both selfish and biased. My principal rooting interest for Friday night is that Margaret has a great time. She has most certainly earned it. Free piece of unsolicited advice to any of her former school mates who attends and who has a bone to pick about any part of the evening's festivities: forward your gripes to me. I can assure you that they will get my full and undivided attention. Keeping in the spirit of the "holiday season", feel free to file that under, "Be Careful For What You Wish".

I am sure that all will come off without a hitch. My wife is simply not programmed to fail. She is most assuredly my favorite human being. She is more than that however. She is amazing. She cannot help it. It is just the way she is.

-AK

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