Saturday, January 3, 2015

new beginnings

During this past week SB has had a sudden influx of former classmates from the Johnson school. As I was enjoying one of many dinners with the flock, I reflected on how different things are now. I almost declined to meet SB's classmates because of my experiences years ago when SB and I were first dating. I hated going out for drinks with them because no one would talk to be all night long and Mr. Oblivious never remembered to introduce me to anyone, not this it would have mattered. It always seemed that the MBAs had to go out in a giant pack so that they filled up most of whatever bar we were frequenting, and then they only talked to each other, and only talked about business news as if nothing else mattered in the world (actually, I think that they believed this). The wives were even worse; not only did they not talk to non-MBAs but they snubbed the 'new' girlfriends and unrelated single women who wandered over. The situation seemed especially unfair because my architecture classmates were inclusive. We may also have been socially retarded and psychotic but we were friendly weirdos. On many nights, we would return from the bar to the enormous house that nine of us shared, bringing back all sorts of new friends. The regular crowd expanded to include fiction writers, artists, anthropologists and a strangely fascinating gaggle of Russian economists.

SB always enjoyed spending time with my classmates but I couldn't say the same about his, and I did try. There was an attempt to join the MBA wives' hockey team that was thwarted by several of the wives straight out lying to me that they were at full capacity, made especially flabbergasting by the fact that SB was the team coach and they had to know that he would find out. In the year that we were in Ithaca together I don't think any of SB's classmates knew or cared who I was other than that I was not one of them.

It seemed a fluke a few years ago when I sat down for dinner with some of Johnson School classmates who were visiting and they asked me what I did and actually listened to my reply. But then it happened again. Were these the same people who only years ago didn't see anyone in the room if that person wasn't an MBA? I had come to dinner armed with an array of snarky comments that I was going to deploy in the face of their disinterest but suddenly I was disarmed. Years after graduation, I have discovered why SB liked these people. I did slide in one small snark when a couple of his friends expressed surprise at my knowledge of all the gossip that they were catching up on and I replied that once upon a time I had not been able to hear anything other than talk about themselves. Heh. But honestly, I really did get to know them all those years ago even if they knew nothing about me. It's amazing how much information you can pick up when you are relegated to standing alone by the bar. 

But now we're getting to know each other and it's a nice change. So in 2015 I look forward to new beginnings.


Gorilla Bananas said...

This sort of thing never happened in Jane Austen's day, when everyone (apart from servants) was given a formal introduction.

architart said...

In Austen's day they would have had an excuse to exclude me due to lack of introduction. I probably would have been snubbed in that period too, since I cannot play the recorder much less a pianoforte.