A workday last week was pretty much shot to hell when somebody from my hometown created a Facebook group called "I Grew Up In Hudson, Ohio."
The group was started in Wednesday morning and by Wednesday evening there were 675 members (and by Friday more than a thousand), all remembering everything they could remember:
"The only way you could leave class to get a drink of water in Mrs. Lucas class was to hiccup in front of her."
"The wrath of Todd Bodtke that would crash upon you if you dare try to pass Geranimals off as Izods."
"Having the high school smell like fish because the physics teacher was dipping goldfish in dry ice and then smashing them in class."
"When 'Fussy Cleaners' across from Gas Town became 'Pussy Cleaners.'"
"Remember Jim the Janitor when he got his new dentures and couldn't stop smiling??"
"Hands down my favorite teacher ever was 3rd grade teacher Mrs. Irish who loved turtles and smelled of wet saltine crackers."
"Mr. McDonnell coming on the p.a. to announce that, yes, the space shuttle just exploded."
"Remember the student English teacher that had the bad perm was always stoned and played the Kansas song and wanted us to write a paper on it?"
"Mr. Barlow the bus driver. He was so sweet and he let me sit next to him while he was driving."
Some kids are better at recalling those sorts of things than others. I'm not very good at it, myself, and I'm grateful to those who are.
"I have to admit that I deeply disliked everything about the Hudson school systems … and the town too," one woman wrote. "Very oppressive little town. I left when I was 17 and never came back."
That sparked a debate about whether Hudson had been a good town to grow up in.
One kid wrote:
Not everyone's experiences are viewed throught the same lense. I can tell you hundreds of stories about the kids in that town beating the shit out of me. there was abuse in my home, my mother beat me almost to death for about 15 years, and kids in that town beat the shit out of me without realizing why I was acting out. I tell where older kids held me down, beat me, shoved dog shit into my clothes and mouth and lauhed their asses off when a neighbor lady came out to help me. Hudson is bitter sweet for me. It was the place of my child hood, so ther is some fondness there, however, as a 40 year old adult male, I still get sifck when I drive past it or through it. some scars are deeper than others, and not everyone has the same happy memories. there is something nostolgic about this page, but there is also a great deal of pain.
This isn't a high school reunion.