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Left Out

Dear Miss SmartyPants,

I just (just!) found out that my 10 year high school reunion is April 8, approximately 2,500 miles from here. Despite the fact that I have an updated address and e-mail listed in our alumna group, I was not invited. After asking around, I find there are a number of people who were not invited -- people that the organizers didn't feel were necessary, apparently, because we weren't well-liked enough in high school. Even though I wasn't exactly Miss Popularity back then, I am interested in knowing what has happened to people in my class these last 10 years ... both my friends and other classmates that I didn't know so well.

In one way, I'm appalled that they could still be so freaking high-schoolish 10 years down the line. In another way, I'm thinking that if that's how they want to be, it's probably better that I didn't spend $1,000 to fly home in order to be snubbed. In yet another way, I'm tempted to gather together as many of the non-invitees as possible and crash (if you can really be said to be crashing your own reunion) the party, expense of a last minute cross-continent flight be damned. It's not too late to do this!

What do you think?

Left Out

Dear Left Out,

I have never heard of a class reunion to which only part of the class was invited. Has anyone called the organizers? I'd hate to advise someone to blow off a reunion just on the assumption that the organizers were deliberately exclusive. Maybe it was an oversight, a mailing glitch, something explainable. I don't know that there's any way to confirm either way, but it's worth a try before deciding.

If you find out it is true, that you and others were intentionally uninvited to your own class reunion, I must ask why you would want to reunite with a bunch of ignorami? And spend big $$$ to do so? If they're being as petty as you suspect, it's probably not a good idea for you to go. They're not going to get any lesson you might think you would impart by your presence, and why waste the time, money and energy on going to this? Instead, if you're so inclined, plan your own reunion, with the people you like, since you already have the mailing list. Consider yourself lucky you weren't invited to the "official" reunion, call the people you want to see, get together on your own terms. But if you do, please don't spend the evening trashing the original reunion organizers. Oh, ok, we're all human, maybe give it 5 minutes of griping. But then let it go, because you will be getting together to have fun, and the original organizers don't deserve any more of your time and energy.

I understand being flummoxed by this, but people who deal positively with rejection view rejection as a way to screen out people who wouldn't have been a good match for them anyway. They can see getting rejected by someone as a favor, since they've been given a clear message that they should put their energy into pursuing other prospects. My pity is reserved for the class reunion organizers, whose adolescence is apparently preserved in amber. Apparently there are people who actually think being a member of the "in crowd" has significance in their lives. Actually, it has no significance as to their happiness, whether they're in high school, the "right" fraternity or sorority, country club, whatever. Which is what they've apparently all failed to see.

So, what can signify happiness in our lives? I would like for readers to send their answers to this question.

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