I am a long-time fan of Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion (I mean the scene where they attempt to sing Footloose), and as luck would have it, it was playing on a lazy Sunday afternoon…so I naturally dropped all my non-plans to watch. (If you haven’t watched it, you should).
Basically, while in high school in the late 1980’s, the duo, bffs, get made fun of by the awesomely-nasty A-team (they put magnets on Michelle’s her scoliosis back brace – not cool). Since high school, they have moved away and are scrapping by in dead-end jobs. Flash forward to 1997 – reunion time. No one has seen them in years, so they devise a plan to become the envy of everyone (by lying of course)…
While watching the movie, I was instantly reminded of my high school days – my super awkwardness and complete inability to talk. (Classmates still tell my mom that I was so shy — ha, ha — if they only knew how much I can talk) I was also reminded of all the things I miss about high school…acquaintances (because since I was so shy, I had just a few, close friends)…my skinny figure…a time when I could eat whatever I wanted and never gain a pound…ok..so I don’t really miss the high school part at all…
Anyway, one major thing stood out. All the “surprises” that Romy and Michelle experience will probably never be experienced by the current generation and generations to come. Why, you ask? Because we have a front row seat to everyone’s life using technology and social media, so there are no surprises — (which makes it really hard to lie)…
(Here is where I could let my inner mass comm geek come out and go on a major tangent about how technology and social media have changed our entire way of life, how awesome that can be, and the dangers — but to avoid putting you in a coma, I won’t)
Below are just a few surprises that Romy and Michelle that they encounter when returning to high school in the non-Facebook age.
“You married Billy Christianson?”
Romy went back to the reunion hoping to catch the eye of her high school love, Billy Christianson only to find that he married the “A Team” leader and arch-nemesis, Christy. Unfortunately for Romy, she suffers a major palm to face moment — and all because she graduated in the 1980’s. Now, we all know who married who, who divorced who, and who is hooking up with who. Facebook has eliminated the mystery.
“I invented Post-Its”
In their eyes, Romy and Michelle felt like like they hadn’t done anything with their lives since high school, so they planned to return to their Alma Mater as successful business women. They forgot one important detail in their elaborate plan: what they actually do.
In Romy’s infinite wisdom, she decides that the duo invented post-it notes — obviously!. Of course, this lie is discovered when Heather Mooney, the girl who actually knows what they are doing, reveals the truth. Today, most people already know what you do — unless, in my case, a ton of people think you are a school teacher (why? no clue). If not, a quick Google search would reveal the truth and deets on your not-so-exciting life.
“I hope your kids look like monkeys”
Way to go, Romy! Awesome comeback. Romy finds out that Billy and Christy have a brood of children with another on the way. Facebook gives you a front row seat to the entire pregnancy, labor, and everything that follows. With little to no effort (and I mean no effort), you know everything about your classmates’ mini-mes: names, birthdays, favorites foods, and the first time they took a poopy in the potty (because I simply must know).
Needless to say, the element of surprise is so 1990’s. I don’t mourn the loss of surprise. In fact, I embrace social networking with open arms. Ya, when we run into a blast from our past, we may find ourselves saying “Ya, I saw that on Facebook.” But, ultimately, we have the awesome ability to easily stay connected with classmates – near and far. We can create a new friendship from an old acquaintanceship — no matter where they live. Also, sorry future generations, lying about your mediocre life will not work for you. Period. Unless you somehow manage to stay off the grid.
Food for thought: Will class reunions become extinct as we become more interconnected?
In the end, (the reason I love this movie) despite many, many mishaps, Romy and Michelle learned to speak up for themselves — and boy, did they. A-team beware. They also pursue their dreams (they own a boutique) and remain bffs. Most importantly, they realized that they are and always were awesome — (I know me and my high school bestie were and are still awesome!) — something they had to learn the hard way.
Good bye, surprise…we will…so not miss you!
Just for your viewing pleasure and for sticking with me this long, here is picture of my bff and I sporting our oh-so flattering cap and gown for picture day (2004): (p.s. Sorry this is grainy…it was taken with a disposable camera — and it was 10 years ago)