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reunion 2006 (Posted: Dec 7,   Modified: Feb 6)
I have time to think since I am waiting for a delayed plane to take me back home from my 20th High School reunion.
I had a great time with the Gang and with the Boys. They all looked great! Fat as hell, they all thought I looked great too. Maybe we are all B. S.-ing each other, but if so, it was not out of spite or apathy. They all looked great to me because I felt great to be looking at them. These are my people, my supporters and guides. The selfishness of youth makes me believe that I was never as good to them as they were to me. May my gratitude be atonement enough for this tragic oversight.
What is past is past and while some say experience “lives” in the past, I calmly remain that all experience – all memories – are not living anywhere. I believe a memory has the qualities of a photograph. It is something that can be observed but not "re-experienced". Even the memory of a feeling is interpreted through the eyes of how I feel today. This is the lesson I learned this weekend: It is better/healthier to live today and look at yesterday, then to, by whatever means, attempt the impossible task of living in the past.
This lesson I learned less in what I have done and more in what I have witnessed. Many, Good Lord, MANY of my classmates of Ardsley H. S. Class of 1986 have found themselves to be living at or beyond their dreams and expectations of 20 years prior. I was certainly given the opportunity to feel envy of those who proudly shared occupations beyond what I have attained (or as is more in my character: depression, anxiety and a desire to BLAME). However, I couldn’t help but be thrilled and damn near overjoyed for all of them. With each success I encountered I smiled big and thought, “Man! What a great group of people!”
They were all eager to hear about me. For me success is not corporate. My job history is somewhat similar to others who floundered after high school. However, where I do have success is on the home front. I couldn’t talk enough – to interested listeners – about my wonderful wife and 2 sensational children.
I am not exaggerating about the success ratio of the Ardsley High School Class of 1986. We have a police officer, a Rabbi, a law professor, a brain surgeon and more. We also have about a dozen or so lawyers and nearly an equal amount in doctors both for the body and for the mind. Of the remainder, we have a strong workforce of sales and marketing executives, Vice Presidents a-plenty and even a few schoolteachers, too. The women who are now full time moms seemed to explode that role into one of contentment, surety and pride. This role was not recognized as failure or lack of ambition. These women are doing what their peers are doing so well: taking on a position, making it their own and being the picture of success.
The members of this class are quality people that I can forever be proud to have known. As I look around at my son's classmates, I wonder what kind of future they might have in store. While I can’t determine by their actions in 4th grade where their lives will take them, I can hope that the bonds they are building now will push, pull and carry them through whatever life offers them.
I am Liam Powell, of Ardsley, NY and proud of it. To the class of 1986 – God Bless you all and thank you for the opportunity to spend a great time with great people.


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