I am constantly amazed by my ability
to think logical
ly, coolly, and reasonably about a subject, know all the right answer
s, and have a very legitimate thought process
and still thoroughly tie myself up in knots about it.
The most recent case is my 20th high school reunion this weekend. I attended a small private high school in my hometown where many of the children of wealthy, upwardly mobile families attended. It was the early 80’s so there were Polo shirts, Bass Weeguns, and khaki pants as far as the eye could see. There were new cars that were replaced by newer cars when Biff or Muffy got tired of the old one or wrecked it.
I came from a less moneyed family than most of my classmates, although I had the brains to hold my own. I always felt like the red-headed stepchild at my high school because I drove an old VW and none of my clothes were designer made. Also, the fact that I was painfully shy and had the social graces of a wounded cape buffalo makes me remember the whole four years as a painful blur.
So it is twenty years later and a lot of things have changed. My complexion has cleared up. I can talk with women without trying to impress them with my charm, wit, and good manners. (Now it just happens naturally, I don’t have to try.) I have had sex. I have a good job, a loving wife, and friends who care about me. I live a comfortable life and make a difference in the lives of others through the work I do with my church.
So, why in the world do I feel like I am fifteen years old who has just been called on to stand up in front of the class and give a book report with a raging erection and tight pants? I know that these people’s opinion only has as much weight in my life as I give it but I am still quite nervous about the whole thing.
Life is weird like that.