9/14/12 - Stephanie Schroeder
Great press about my memoir, Beautiful Wreck: Sex, Lies & Suicide, launched 9/10/12, from Publishers Weekly: http://bit.ly/PPv6YH; Advocate: http://bit.ly/T6nce4; PrettyQueer: http://bit.ly/O5povE ; 14KaratLiving: http://bit.ly/O5pUKn; SheWired:http://bit.ly/UkMgvQ; and GO!: http://bit.ly/OOlXKv
From Today's Kenosha News August 11, 2011 - Liz Snyder Article
Reunion Survival Tip: 'You Look Great'
If I don’t lose my nerve at the last minute, I am doing something Friday that few people will attempt.
I am attending my 30th high school class reunion — without having lost “that last 20 (or 40) pounds.”
The truth is, however, that no one will be shocked to see me as a frumpy, middle-aged woman. I wasn’t exactly a “looker” in high school — Bradford, class of 1981, go Red Devils! — which, at the time, seemed like a horrible fate. In retrospect, being average-looking is a blessing; you have less to lose as the years take their toll.
My biggest fear is that no one will talk to me, and I can only hover over the buffet table and stuff my face with cheese for so long before people start to talk.
If by chance someone does wander over to say hello, there’s fear No. 2: Not remembering his or her name.
Name tags take care of that problem — provided you can read them without your glasses — but if all else fails, just laugh and say “Oh, hello you! So great to see you!” Then pray someone else comes by and blurts out a name.
Here are some more High School Reunion Survival Tips:
- Repeat this phrase early and often: “You look great!” No matter how invisible you were back in the day, this will make you very popular
- Use this comment carefully — “You haven’t changed at all” — in case the person in question is a late bloomer who would rather not be reminded that she spent all three years of high school with a retainer plastered across her face.
- Go easy on an old nickname. If your buddy from chem lab introduces himself as Dennis, don’t call him “Stinky.” It’s likely a moniker he buried the day he left high school.
- Unless you’re talking to your old offensive line, can it with the “glory days” talk of the “big game.” Go with the Packers chances of repeating as Super Bowl champs instead; it will make you sound less like a guy who peaked in high school.
- Don’t wear incredibly high heels — this goes for men and women. Seeing people you haven’t come across in three decades is not the time to be tottering around on new shoes, risking injury — and embarrassment. Ditto for tight clothing and anything that risks a “wardrobe malfunction.”
- Don’t lie about your job, your family or that backpacking trip around Europe you never got around to doing. Keeping a false story straight is too difficult, and this is Kenosha; someone there is bound to know you’re not a NASA research scientist.
- But don’t be TOO honest, either. Just because you’re an overweight, borderline hoarder precariously clinging to middle-class status (totally hypothetical of course) doesn’t mean you should lead with that.
- Go easy on the booze. As fun as it looks in “The Hangover” to wake up in a strange room minus your underwear, a 48-year-old doing so in Kenosha is just sad.
- Resist the urge to finally tell off that jerk who was so mean to you 30 years ago. Your eloquent speech will never come out sounding like you rehearsed it in your head. And, chances are, he/she won’t remember it now anyway; bringing it up will just make you look petty.
- Finally, try to relax and enjoy yourself. There are a lot worse things than showing up at a reunion looking somewhat worse for wear. I went to a memorial service last week for a 39-year-old man. He’ll never get to attend his 30th high school reunion, no matter how good he looked.