How Facebook Helped Me Dodge a Bullet

Facebook Dodge a BulletSo then…my sister Della urges me for the 52nd time to look up people from the past on Facebook so I can catch up with all my old friends from high school and college.

I tell her that I prefer to think of those people as perennially young, vital, and attractive – rather than glimpse them as their current wrinkled, paunchy, older selves. Like me.

To prove my point, I share with her some emails I recently exchanged with one of my high school friends Liz.

TO: Della (my sister)
FROM: Darcy
Subject: Why It’s Better Not To Know

Della, here’s a good example why I don’t wanna participate in Facebook and School Reunions in general. My high school friend Liz sent me this email:
“The other night there was a happy hour thing for alums of our girls’ high school and the boys’ high school because a guy named Tim “Mac” MacIntyre* was coming into town from Nebraska or somewhere up north. I went, and it was fun and all, but am I supposed to remember this guy? He said he remembered me, and I feel horrible for not knowing him. He was a football player all 4 years & graduated the same time we did. Anyway, do you know him? He has a pic on Facebook if you wanna look him up. Catch me up if you know this guy. –Liz”

So I replied:
Omigosh, Liz, you don’t remember that you lost your virginity to Mac?
And he tattoo-ed your name on his inner thigh!
And you signed a contract that if he ever needed a kidney, you would be first in line to donate.
How could you not remember this guy?
(OK, I don’t remember him at all either. Sorry. I even looked him up on Facebook and didn’t recognize him.)
The only football player I remember was Kevin Riley* who I thought was pretty dreamy — but he was very shy. I asked him to a Sadie Hawkins dance and he declined! I prefer to think he objected to dancing in general, and not to me in particular. But I will never know!
— Darcy

Then Liz sent me this response:
Thanks, and I’m glad I don’t have total amnesia for my high school days! I do have some further scoop on Kevin Riley*. He married a friend of mine and they had 5 kids and then a few years ago, he had some kind of midlife crisis and divorced her and moved in with a younger woman in Texas, last I heard. So, be glad he refused your dance invitation; that could have been you! — Liz

So my dear sister, do you see what I mean? Prior to this email exchange, I had fondly recalled Kevin as that dreamy football player who was so shy, that most other girls didn’t notice him, but I had a crush on him. And in my mind, he was young and cute and muscular — and represented a cool “what if” fantasy if he HAD said yes to the Sadie Hawkins dance.

But NOW I picture him as some plump, balding, desperate middle-aged man having a midlife crisis and being such a jerk that he dumped his wife and 5 kids to run off to Texas with some cheap young floozy.

THIS is Why It’s Better Not to Know.

My sister Della responds:
OR…maybe his wife was a pyromaniac, kleptomaniac, nymphomaniac shrew who stole things, set fires, and slept with his friends — and he is still dreamy, cute and muscular, but he had to leave for the safety of his children. Jeez — Why do you always think the worst of people?

(But you still dodged a bullet — ‘cuz he’s got FIVE kids. Who needs that hassle?)
— Della

(*not their real names, by the way, to protect their identities!)

Ha!  Indeed, sister, indeed!  Who needs that hassle?  Better the Texas floozy than me!

— Darcy Perdu

(Any Facebook posts or Reunion events where you discovered your crush has not aged well – or hasn’t turned out the way you thought? How about that mean girl in gym class – what happened to her? Anyone who HAS held up surprising well – or turned out really nicely? Share updates on your classmates in the Comments Section below; just protect their identities!)

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26 replies on “How Facebook Helped Me Dodge a Bullet

  1. Gemm said:

    My high school crush got a girl knocked up right after we graduated. I don’t know how many kids they have but I know one of their kids has graduated already. Jesus, I’m getting old. But I stalked him on FB and he looks the same as he did in high school, just slightly heavier. I didn’t go to my 10 year reunion. I won’t go to my 25 year one which is in 2 years. Holy crap, I’m old. I’m going to mark the invite as “deceased, return to sender” just to screw with them. I’m only FB friends with one girl I went to high school with. She’ll go along with it.

  2. Judy said:

    I didn’t enjoy high school (the people not the academics although, they were a dud too) and thusly didn’t go to any reunions. I did however look at the photos posted from the last one. It was the same three chicks in every photo, vamping it up. I don’t actually remember who they were, but I remember them being in the popular crowd and glad I missed it. The guy I had a secret crush on is apparently a rock star now. I remember the popular girls in school complaining that he’d rather spend time playing his bass then paying attention to girls. I think he had his priorities right.

  3. mimi gin said:

    Yup… he’s gay. Oh well. I’ve got a good guy now.

  4. I have to admit that I refuse to go to any class reunions. Couldn’t wait to escape that high school suburban prison and almost all of those lame classmates. Once in a while I check out a few on facebook and most have not aged well. Plus, many still live in or near the town we grew up in! Yowza!
    Phil recently posted..Are all gyms full of idiots? Training hard in NYC and beyond!My Profile

  5. Candice said:

    My highschool ex broke my heart that I remember crying for a couple of weeks and listening to Journey’s “Separate ways” over and over again. About 4 years ago at his sisters wedding, we saw each other and I had an image in my mind that was just shattered. I always remembered him tall, dark, and having amazing big brown eyes, that I would get lost in. But he was short, had no neck, and his eyes were oddly large. I called my mother and told her about how he changed and she just laughed and told me that he always looked like that and I was 14 and saw him with my “in-love rose-colored glasses on”.

    Another weird thing happened a couple of months after that. He wrote me an instant message apologizing for breaking my heart in high school and that he was in love me, and can’t stop thinking about me. My response was – It was high school and I was over that breakup long ago, I then asked what happen to his wife? since I just saw them together at the wedding. I told him thanks but no thanks. – All I can figure is he must have had a head injury recently. It’s not like we had ever kept in contact for the last 25 years. I have not heard from him since.

  6. I absolutely refuse to go to any of my high school reunions. That is a rabbit hole I don’t ever want to fall down again. The fellow on whom I had a rip-roaring crush died an alcoholic, the one girl with whom I did keep in touch died of ALS, and when I ran into another class mate at a business meeting, I discovered he was a full-blown bigot. Thanks, but no thanks.

  7. Facebook is weird.

    I recently added a friend of my wife, or at least she added me – she had bought one of my books and wanted to connect. I usually don’t add people I haven’t met personally or had significant dealings with, but as she was only one connection away via my wife (and my wife doesn’t add a whole lot of people) I figured it would be fine.

    And it was (is) BUT she comes from the same area that we do, and via the magic of facecramp one of my ex-girlfriends was also connected to her.

    A girlfriend from HS.
    A girlfriend that was part of a pretty unhappy breakup.
    A girlfriend that had spent the couple of years after our breakup telling everyone what a pr**k I was. (Not entirely without justification I might add).

    And she added me.

    So I sent her a message suggesting that she might have the wrong guy, and was she aware that she had added someone who she had once mentioned “I hope I never see him again” when I first left town (and before I met my wife – the ace-est human being on the planet).

    “Yes, I know who you are, I just wanted to see how your life turned out.”


    I added her. She doesn’t seem to be that communicative as to whether she thinks she dodged a bullet or not.

    I think she did – her husband is a really nice guy, she’s got great kids, lives in a nice place.

    What she would have got from me?
    All that a writer can give – good conversation and very little else.

    Wait- perhaps SHE is bragging…

    …dammit, I fell for her little scheme.

    heh heh

    • Frankie said:

      OMG! I was secretly dating a guy in High School. Because we were dating in secret he didn’t like the arrangement and met girl in a party and “fell in love” and dumped me. My senior year that floozy transfers to my school and sticks her key chain out with a picture of him front.of me. (OH HELL NO). ON TOP OF THAT she sings (like I do) and was in all the music programs I was in!!!I made a vow on my senior year to be in every function there was and she being new there did it too! I’m proud to say I was second runner up in the Ms. Cobra pageant and she ranked NOTHING. Now in my head I was basically cursing her but I told myself I would stay classy and not let her bait me and we ended up singing in our graduation ceremony (don’t ask me how I did it). But through this rant what I’m trying to say is that SHE FREAKING REQUESTED ME ON FACEBOOK! Mind you I’m not petty it was high school but we didn’t talk and we weren’t friends so I wasn’t sure what her story was. I knew that she married him and apparently divorced him. I tried stealing him away once after high school but he had what a call a baby dick and he had trouble getting it up (my god thank goodness I didn’t hook up with this guy). Things happen for a reason folks. Phew! I’m still debating whether to accept her request.

  8. While being hit on by old classmates on Facebook can give a slight boost to one’s ego…it is somewhat disheartening when said classmate is sending you private messages, telling you how good you look, and THEIR profile picture is of their wife and kids. It makes me want to take a Silkwood shower and join a convent, and I didn’t even do anything.

    Sadly, this has happened more than once. This year. And it’s only June.

  9. Ellie said:

    I’m not on Facebook. Don’t do it; don’t use it; don’t want to be found on it; don’t want to find others on it. Dinosaur or smart fox?

  10. I’m only on Facebook under my penname, so for the most part, it’s not possible for someone from those days to track me down. And high school wasn’t much fun for me, so I’d just avoid reunions all together.
    William Kendall recently posted..A Day In The Life Of A DogMy Profile

  11. So, sincerely, I didn’t like any of those people in high school. Why would I pay money to spend with them now?
    I have one friend who loves the whole reunion thing. I just don’t care. Anybody I thought was worth knowing I still know (the number is painfully small). The few others I really liked won’t even friend me on FB. What’s up with that? (hmmm, maybe they didn’t like me then and don’t want to know me know….) ;)
    BB:) recently posted..everything is a pyramid scheme these daysMy Profile

  12. LR said:

    A few years back, my boyfriend’s mother interviewed candidates for their family business, and her best interviewee turned out to be our old middle school mean girl. Guess who DIDN’T get the job! A good lesson in reaping what you sow.

  13. Alex said:

    Sometimes I Google names. I find it depressing when I bump into a webpage from someone who was “average” in school and turned out to be very wealthy and successful, looking ten times better than they did in school to boot (and without surgery). Perhaps the ones who didn’t do so well don’t want to be found… well, that’s my story and I’ll stick to it. In hindsight I think it’s probably better not to know. You don’t have much in common anymore. For every “I found and married my high school sweetheart after 40 years” story there are probably a dozen or more bald paunchy sleazy wrinkly bitchy disappointments. Call me pessimistic, but maybe it’s best to stay in the nostalgia bubble. Or is that optimistic? Can’t decide.

    • Ha – I prefer to stay in the “Nostalgia Bubble” too!

  14. Cynthia Rosenberger said:

    I never went to any of my high school reunions because I attended 2 different high schools. The first one I was there through Junior year, the other only Senior year. It was horrible.
    But anyways…I swore I was going to marry my high school crush…but I of course didn’t — BUT a friend of mine did!! It’s ok though, he grew up to look the same in his face but is tall and really skinny, I’m not into skinny men!

    • That’s so interesting your pal married that crush — but sounds like he wasn’t the right guy for you anyway. I’ve seen a few people I crushed on hard in high school — but now, I’m like, “Oh, glad I dodged THAT!” Ha!

  15. Diane said:

    So the two girls that made the most fun of me in junior high and high school, one showed up to our reunion wearing a hooker dress, the other has never showed, but I saw her on Facebook and she looks like a horse. Most of the guys that made fun of me (I was rather plain at the time) have paunches and lost most of their hair. The guy I had the big crush on still looks good and OMG, can he dance. Me? :) I finally developed and nobody knew who I was.

    • Horse & Hooker — serves them right for making fun of you in school!
      Crush guy still looks good AND he can dance — that’s awesome!

  16. Ash said:

    My high school ex came up as a person I might know on Facebook a few months ago. He’s gone from muscular and hot to, ummmm…. Not. So glad I dodged that bullet!

    • Ha! I’m sure he’s a nice guy, appearance notwithstanding.
      But it’s more fun to imagine our youthful crushes as always…youthful – right? :)

  17. Rhonda said:

    My high school boyfriend (2 years!) Has 6 biological children, and 4 adopted. Dodged. A. Bullet.

    • Holy Cow! 10 kids? (passing out from sheer exhaustion just READING the term “10 kids!”)