Hobo Teacher, a blog I just discovered, is a hilarious take on teaching. Reading it only further proved that the college students I work with here, are just barely not in high school. And then thinking that made me think about this weekend and my time spent with some college friends. Self deemed the Ladies of 7N, the five of us met in the fall of 2000 while getting our Undergrads at OU, and have stayed friends as we continue life after college; a rag tag group that has produced a nurse, two teachers, an office manager, and me.
Anyway, I made the realization a long time ago that people change, as Steven King once wrote, "Friends come in and out in your life like waiters in a restaurant." But, I was still a little surprised with the change in the group; our banter of old replaced by discussions that included: 401K programs, state budget cuts, teacher position downsizing, and hospital safety drills. Finally at one point I looked at Stac, my closest friend from the group and said, "I never thought I would see the day that the OU girls were talking about 401K's." I know, I know, as people age you begin to talk about things more complex than what guy you are shagging, but when 401K's become my life's excitement, well, that's when I will exit without grace.
Even the later conversation, usally relaxed by a few drinks, felt loaded with some dark under-current, a tension; an almost "walking on egg shells" with each other feeling. What is it as we age? Do we finally look around and not recognize who is looking out at us through those familiar eyes? Is the needle scratched off the record, the ball dropped? Have we changed so much that we have become someone that is unrecognizable?
I hope so. I hate the person I was in college. I loathe the person I am now far less.