Critical Section


thirty years

Saturday,  05/16/09  10:38 AM

thirty year reunion - nametagLast night I attended my Caltech class of '79 thirty year reunion.  Wow, thirty years.  It gives me goose bumps just typing those words.  I was looking forward to it, but it was even more fun than I anticipated.  There were about thirty members of my class present - out of about 250 total, I think - and about ten people from my "house", Ricketts House, one of the seven undergraduate dorms.  The weird thing is we're all 50+ instead of 20+, but people don't change.  Honestly everyone looks, acts, thinks, and is exactly the way I remember them.

Which is not to say everyone's life has played out as I might have expected; if you made two columns, one with names, and one with life stories, I would have been hard-pressed to match them up.  Some have taken conventional paths to their future, and others pretty weird ones, and of course there are probably some even weirder ones among those who didn't or couldn't attend.  But their experiences didn't change them.

I had gone to my twenty year reunion (sorry, no link, that was pre-blogging) and that was fun, but it was different; as I noted the other day, at 50+ you're a lot more relaxed than at 40+, or at least I am...  It was thoroughly enjoyable to be among a group where everyone accepts everyone else without question.  And they're all really smart; which makes them really interesting.  I could spend any amount of time hanging out.

I'm looking forward to our fortieth year reunion already!

BTW there was a reception before the dinner where each class presented a donation to the Caltech Alumni Fund, and it was interesting to see some of the older classes present theirs...  The members of the class of '49 attended Caltech sixty years ago, and are now in their eighties... what amazing lives they must have led, joining Caltech just as WWII ended, and seeing everything that has happened since.  Incredible.

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