I came across some yearbooks online from my old junior high school. It's been so many years. The teachers look so young to me now. I was surprised that the janitor from my grade school had been working at the junior high at the time. I never saw him there, or maybe I callously walked right past him and didn't deign to notice. I do remember wondering later why janitors all looked alike.
The kids looked younger than I remember, which started to really depress me. At the time, I thought we were basically adults. Now they look like children and the horrible things that happened to some of them seem so much worse now.
+ There was a kid who was picked on all the time. A few years later, I sat next to him in a class in high school and he kept talking about shooting people with .44 magnums with hollow point bullets. He and his brother both became car thieves in high school. His older brother stayed out of prison, but he was locked up for a few years.
+ A kid who struggled with a serious drug problem and killed himself by jumping into the river.
+ There was a boy, a friend of my brother's, who had several pictures in the yearbook. Everyone liked him. His mother died after a long illness. A few days later, his father disappeared. He had walked into the woods and killed himself.
+ A kid whose drunken father would come home and beat him with a baseball bat. Sometimes his mother would protect him, sometime she wouldn't. He became a drug addict later.
+ A kid who really wasn't very bright. He had a girlfriend who was in high school who couldn't have been very bright either. He didn't come right out and tell us, but he joked and broadly hinted that they had gone into the woods to consummate their relationship. Later, he joked and broadly hinted that she was pregnant. And quite some time later, without explanation, he started making jokes about babies and their bodily functions.
+ A kid who died of an overdose in his 20's.
+ Kids who were friendless and picked on.
+ A kid who must have had some sort of glandular disorder and was walking around with big bushy beard when he was thirteen. He was happy with it. He would hang around in bars.
+ A boy who survived the Khmer Rouge.
+ A Vietnamese girl whose father bribed a guy with gold for the family to emigrate
+ A kid who was propositioned by a man in a park.
+ A kid who said his grandmother made him to go out in the yard to get her a switch. He brought her a dried up stick he found on the ground but she demanded a BETTER switch. He used the cord from the venetian blinds to demonstrate how hard she hit him.
+ A kid who kept missing school due to arthritis.
+ A girl whose grandmother took her for a ride in her new airplane and had to get out the owners manual to find out how to land.
+ A teacher who was taken to the hospital when some young scamps spiked his coffee with LSD.
+ A homely kid the teachers openly hated.
+ There was a kid who would always accuse people of "hassling" him. "Are you hassling me? Are you giving me a hassle?" he would say. He said this a lot. He had little scars that kept appearing on his face. A girl said his father abused him, but I don't know how she knew.
Those are just the ones I knew about and I really didn't know much about what was going on.