Skipping Your High School Reunion

I skipped my high school reunion to go to a family reunion. Adam Wilson, author of the novel Flatscreen, skipped his to go to a psychic healer. Adam Wilson wins:

But maybe I was just bitter and embarrassed. It’s not that I was in such bad shape ten years on—I’d managed to kick a drug habit (Tylenol PM), move out of my parents’ basement, and trick a wonderful woman into dating me—but that in a group of high achievers, I was definitively unimpressive. After a long period of unemployment, I had moved to New York and become the cliché of a struggling writer, working part-time in a bookstore, publishing occasional TV recaps online, and squeezing into the skinniest jeans I could manage. I’d received a number of rejections on my autobiographical novel about a twenty-something stoner who can’t get over high school.

It’s possible that a high school reunion was what I actually needed. It would have given me the chance to reconvene with those, like me, who had grown up in the same privileged environment, unprepared for life’s obstacles. But my former classmates weren’t people to me. They were avatars. I knew them only by the shallow signifiers of social media—curated photos of them looking their best, posing at weddings in rented tuxedoes, or tanned and smiling on foreign beaches alongside half-naked spouses, who, via tricks of the light, looked impossibly luminescent, inhumanly happy. The bite and grind of their actual lives was unknown to me; all I saw was un-relatable elation.

And if you want to know what exactly a psychic healer does, join the club. It sounds like Adam Wilson’s psychic healer gives massages while talking to you about astrology which, frankly, sounds great.

PS: Pleeeeease email us if you are a psychic healer willing to be interviewed.

Photo: Alan Light

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