Facebook is really making me wonder if I need to reevaluate my entire high school experience.
I did not like high school. I spent as little time there as possible, but it was still far too much. If I had to do it over again, I’d drop out the day I turned sixteen, take some college classes, read a lot, and get a GED.
But then, you see, I joined Facebook. And then I started getting friend requests from people I knew in high school. A few are people I was at least friendly with, but there are plenty of others I can scarcely remember, and some I remember actively disliking me.
Of course, Facebook is in part about gathering “friends,” and some people are heavily invested in getting their numbers up, and that may account for part of it. And I have observed that people you know who haven’t seen you in a long time invariably treat you as a long-lost friend, regardless of how little they liked you back when.
A few weeks ago I got a message from a long-lost high school acquaintance in which said acquaintance mentioned that he’d always had a crush on me. I did not date in high school. I did not even come close. I certainly didn’t think anyone came even close to harboring an affection for me. But apparently I was wrong — and knowing that has made me start to wonder how many other impressions I had that were incorrect. And that in turn leads me to wonder if I had a whole other possible high school existence, a sort of parallel track that I never found a way to hop on. It’s almost enough to make me wish I could go back and do it again — but not quite enough. I think I’d still hate gym class, lockers, bells, the smell of the cafeteria, and my AP English teacher.