By Susan M

Where are those people you wanted to be in college? My alumni magazine arrived this week, chock full of brags, new babies, and stories of the successful – and left me feeling a bit unsatisfied with my child-rich, career-poor life. Who cares that my oldest (the Pie) can read Harry Potter at age 8 – I have yet to design a landmark building, collect art (and donate it accordingly), or invent the newest cell phone technology. All those wallflower feelings came back at me with full force – not only am I not the cool girl at the band party, but I don’t even have enough cool stuff for an alumni blurb.

Medicated by Diet Coke and an Oreo (ok, six), I set off to find the people I most wanted to be in college. The cool, the smart, the witty. What on earth happened to that writer guy, the research scientist, the brilliant geek, and the girl with the stories that always one-upped the rest of us? Well, my friends, google and facebook are wonderful things – there they all were, in full color.

The writer guy? On early tenure track, with a new book, and a gazillion articles. Still cool? Yep.

The research scientist who would save the world? Finished her PhD, still writing articles, and doing research that could potentially save the next generation from STDs. Really cool.

The brilliant geek? Doing something unexplainable for information security – thank him the next time you don’t get a virus from email. Really, really cool. Especially because of the virus thing.

The one-up girl I couldn’t find much on – she’s apparently just running a chess camp for the needy. Slacker by comparison, but still cool.

As I drowned my sorrows in more Diet Coke, the Pie came to me with a project idea for our Brownie troop. It was a good one, involved serious amounts of glue, beads, & glitter, which never would be allowed in sane peoples’ houses. As I agreed to allow the girls to drown themselves in enough Elmer’s and glitter to be mistaken for Vegas showgirls, she threw her arms around me – “You’re the best mom ever. Really. ”

I am so cool.