Last week I heard “Summer of ’69” by Bryan Adams on the radio. The chorus contains the line, “Those were the best days of my life.” This made me think of a couple of things. First off, it reminded me that I’m not that big of a Bryan Adams fan. Secondly, it brought back memories of high school. Back then, I often heard people say that we should enjoy those years because they were the best years of our lives.

At the time I wasn’t very convinced of that. In fact, I thought the idea was absurd. I was basically the class nerd, so I didn’t particularly enjoy high school. Back then graduation couldn’t come soon enough. To me it was something of a cruel joke to suggest that those times would be the best that I could ever have.

Naturally, as one grows older, one’s view of the world can change drastically as you realize that you didn’t know everything when you were a kid. Youthful certainty gives way to a more mature outlook, and you must admit to yourself that your earlier views were misguided.

Then again, sometimes your teenage self got lucky and got it right the first time.

My life now is far better than the life I had in high school. In those days, I spent most of my time worrying over my grades. I didn’t have a car and lived in a very small town, so I didn’t have too much to do outside of school. Going off to college gave me a degree of freedom I had never had before. And that freedom only increased after I went out into the world and got a job.

I now have a good career, a great wife, and the cutest baby in the world. Nothing I had in high school can remotely compare to this (not even becoming a really high level Magic User). So at least in this case, my high school self was dead on the money. I guess that sort of makes up for the fact that he thought Manimal was quality television. Or maybe not.