No, it is not rattling chains in the attic, getting on my nerves. It is a more personal haunting. I’m about to revisit the Ghost of Me Past, courtesy of my upcoming twentieth high school reunion. And while my head is still spinning, I’ll then have to square that vision with the Ghost of Me Present. At the same time, I must bludgeon others over the head with the message that yes!, I’ve truly become the superior specimen of all that early youthful promise. I have, I have. Only one night for the sales job, so no pressure.
Everyone I will encounter has a tiny clock in their head which stopped dead at graduation all those years ago. I’ve been arrested, mid-sentence, in their minds, as they have been in mine. No progression, no changes, frozen eternally at gum chewing, sarcastic seventeen, cut down in my non-prime. Every teenager in my memory is about to morph into an adult. Eighty women in a room, all trying to stifle anxieties about what they have become. Curious to compare their wrinkles, their abs, their husbands, their careers, their children, their lack of children. All peering into a funhouse mirror that reflects back only their previous, more primitive selves. Yes, it definitely sounds like a nightmare, but it depends on your point of view.
For one night, we get to re-experience the lost self, the shedded skin we slipped out of long ago for something more comfortable. It’s a time machine. And when the laws of physics get bent, interesting things happen. Remember, everyone’s in the time machine together – so I won’t have the Bill-and-Ted problem of encountering locals who are behaving normally and think I’m nuts. What will I say to the Ghost Me, when I bump into her?
Everything turns out okay, in case you were wondering. And it’s been way too long.