Rich Galen

When we were 60, we all looked like slightly older versions of what we looked like when we were 17 and 18. For the most part we could look at one another and remember in a glance who was who.

But, the pages of the calendar have taken their toll on most of us physically over the past eight years. Without name tags complete with senior yearbook photos attached, it would have been very difficult to answer the question: "Do you remember who I am?"

Once I looked at the name and photo, each 68-year-old face resolved itself into the 18-year-old person I remembered from high school.

I also wondered what was going on fifty years before we graduated, It was on June 28, 1914 (the 100th anniversary will be next Saturday) when Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated sparking the Great War; a war the U.S. would not enter for nearly three more years. From July on, the rest of the year is largely taken up by the news of European nations choosing up sides.

Except for July 11, 1914 when Babe Ruth made his major league debut with the Boston Red Sox.

At our 50th reunion, the old flirtations became new flirtations between slightly older men and women. The high school feuds have been either resolved, forgotten, or forgiven. The talk had moved from who is secretly dating whom, to what type of hearing aids we favored and what brand of statin we are taking.

The pages of our calendars will continue, God willing, to drop away. Some day each of us will reach the cardboard at the back and we'll say goodbye.

But for this weekend, at least, a group of senior citizens were young high school graduates again and got to share their 18+ thousand calendar pages with one another leaving with a new little twinkle in our collective reading-glasses-needed eyes, the better for having reconnected, and having relived, the days that have gone by oh so quickly.

On the Secret Decoder Ring page today: A Mullfoto of me in my cap and gown on graduation day.


Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at Mullings.com.