Awkward Yearbook Signatures
September 27, 2009 5:02 PM   Subscribe

Every year, thousands of things get written in people's yearbooks. Some of them are heartfelt and will stand the test of time. But most of them are just Awkward Yearbook Signatures. [via mefi projects]
posted by Effigy2000 (66 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
 
I also thought of posting this when I saw it, but it only has one page of entries at present.
posted by Burhanistan at 5:06 PM on September 27, 2009


Wow. this is one of those ideas that, once someone actually does it, has always seemed so clear. Could be a goldmine.

HAGS.
posted by Corduroy at 5:11 PM on September 27, 2009


I had the same response as Burhanistan - great idea, not much substance to the site yet though.
posted by blaneyphoto at 5:14 PM on September 27, 2009


Heh. Only one page of entries and I think I know one of the signatories. Now to go grab my yearbook and try to match the handwriting to be sure.
posted by Riki tiki at 5:14 PM on September 27, 2009


Let's sum it up, 'cuz this crap hasn't changed in 50 years:

Possible yearbook blurb meanings.

1. I hate you
2. I want to do you
3. I'm jealous of you
4. I'm cooler than you
5. I worship you
6. You're an idiot
7. I'm an idiot
8. I can't spell
9. I don't know who you are
10. I'm sorry I did you

I'm open to additions to the list.
posted by HuronBob at 5:16 PM on September 27, 2009 [12 favorites]


I sort of figured that with facebook being so popular these days that actual yearbooks were another of those things that people are just not seeing as necessary anymore, like newspapers and landlines. Do high schools in 2009 still produce yearbooks?
posted by Rhomboid at 5:17 PM on September 27, 2009


I'm open to additions to the list.

Well, in 6th grade a bunch of us were going around writing innocuous things like "have a great summer", only it would be written in the shape of boobs.
posted by Burhanistan at 5:18 PM on September 27, 2009 [2 favorites]


Hey Effigy, thanks for posting the site. I just started posting to the site this week, but wanted to put it out there to solicit submissions. I only had so many good ones from my own yearbooks, and buying them off of ebay is a risky proposition because you're sort of going in site unseen. So if you have any from your own past, please scan and send them in! Any other advice about the site content, etc would be appreciated as well.



Riki tiki, where'd you go to school? I had some friends who were really into that cartoon in HS/college as well.
posted by JoeGoblin at 5:18 PM on September 27, 2009


About as interesting as a web site dedicated to the text of Greeting cards.
posted by bpm140 at 5:19 PM on September 27, 2009


Yes, high schools definitely still produce yearbooks. Facebook isn't really for the same purpose. In my mind: Facebook = keeping in contact with people, seeing what's going on. Yearbooks = nostalgia down the line.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 5:19 PM on September 27, 2009


Yep, I was right. I think I also know who submitted it to the site.

Interesting, under normal circumstances I would think this was a fun diversion, a bit of internet voyeurism along the lines of PostSecret. Knowing who these people are and seeing their ill-considered thoughts aired to the public fifteen years later makes me feel weird about it. Makes me wonder if I should feel weird about enjoying PostSecret and FailBlog and Not Always Right and Ugliest Tattoos, as well.
posted by Riki tiki at 5:20 PM on September 27, 2009


*remembers the many instances of "Have a nice summer" in his yearbook, then sighs*
posted by adipocere at 5:21 PM on September 27, 2009


I'm open to additions to the list.

11. Let's dance around the awkward, unrequited crush you always had one me.

There is one on the site, and one in my yearbook.
posted by drjimmy11 at 5:22 PM on September 27, 2009 [1 favorite]


ok... is it just me, or is this feeling a bit odd...
posted by HuronBob at 5:22 PM on September 27, 2009


had *ON* me
posted by drjimmy11 at 5:22 PM on September 27, 2009


Possible yearbook blurb meanings. ... I'm open to additions to the list.

Summer is going to rock!
posted by filthy light thief at 5:24 PM on September 27, 2009


Well, in 6th grade a bunch of us were going around writing innocuous things like "have a great summer", only it would be written in the shape of boobs.

Genius.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 5:25 PM on September 27, 2009


Unfortunately the quality of the first entry completely dwarfs the subsequent entries. R.I.R. 2-Pac.
posted by panboi at 5:26 PM on September 27, 2009


An effective deterrent to wishing one were in high school again.
posted by DU at 5:29 PM on September 27, 2009 [1 favorite]


See you in the car! - Milhouse
posted by shammack at 5:34 PM on September 27, 2009 [10 favorites]


"Then we'll proceed to do every cool thing possible."

Wow, that dwarfs my high school ambitions.
posted by Hollow at 5:35 PM on September 27, 2009


I graduated high school in 1970 and was too much of a hippie to get a yearbook, but in my junior year one friend wrote "To the professor of drugs" making it a little embarrassing to show to my parents or daughter. These days, yearbook comments can be pretty explicit...even if they are based pretty loosely on real life.
posted by kozad at 5:36 PM on September 27, 2009 [1 favorite]


If your signature also includes the phrases “Thug Life” and a misspelled “RIP 2-Pac”, you may as well include “The Virgin” your bail bondsman's number in between your first and last name.
posted by crapmatic at 5:40 PM on September 27, 2009


No.
This reads like that People of Wal-Mart site. The people being mocked are somehow sympathetic, while the people combing through their 10-year-old high school yearbooks for mockable blurbs from then-friends...? Not sympathetic. Ho, ho, this one-time friend was less sophisticated at 16 than I am now, at 28, can only be said in this voice.
posted by Methylviolet at 5:43 PM on September 27, 2009 [3 favorites]


When I was a senior in high school I was making these Stan Brakhage style "direct stock" films with 16mm motion picture film. The most common technique I would use was to punch out a tiny disk of film with a circular paper-punch, then replace it with a similar disk from another film. I would use ordinary cellophane tape to keep it in place. Believe it or not, it usually went through the projector just fine.

I realized that "have a great summer" was a rather cliche' comment to put in people's yearbooks, so instead I would make the same kind of alteration I did with my films. I inserted a tiny disk of motion picture film into their yearbooks.

It would have been great to have also included a witty tagline, but I think I came up short in that department...

C'mon people, the yearbook is just a medium!
posted by Tube at 5:44 PM on September 27, 2009


I inserted a tiny disk of motion picture film into their yearbooks.

You ought really to have inserted a circle of someone else's yearbook.
posted by Beautiful Screaming Lady at 5:56 PM on September 27, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm tempted to submit a full page comic strip drawn by "the awkward, unrequited crush" (he drew the page and then taped it in to my senior yearbook only after the others he referenced in said comic had signed its pages) because it was all kinds of awesome, and addressed the superficiality of the typical yearbook greeting directly, while being heartbreakingly sweet and making genuinely wish I had felt something/anything for him, at the time.

I have trouble remembering the faces of most of the people who signed that yearbook, but I still remember him and occasionally even wonder where he is and how life is treating him.
posted by squasha at 6:12 PM on September 27, 2009


ugh. what I did with the grammar in that comment? you'd think I was writing on someone's yearbook....
posted by squasha at 6:16 PM on September 27, 2009


Metafilter:
> 2 good
+ 2 be
= 4 gotten

(My 7th grade favorite)
posted by Edward L at 6:22 PM on September 27, 2009 [1 favorite]


12. You're fucking weird, you fucking weirdo.
13. You're fucking weird, you fucking weirdo. I'm totally glad we're friends. Weirdo.

These make up the bulk of my year book signatories.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 6:30 PM on September 27, 2009 [2 favorites]


remember me in the city
remember me in the town
remember me as the guy who wrote
in your yearbook upside-down

Yeah, I remember the year that teenagers in St. Louis thought that was witty.
posted by Afroblanco at 6:30 PM on September 27, 2009


Central Valley high school culture circa late-90s (in the case of the Modesto entries). The writing style alone just reminds me so much of the kids I went to school with, in a smaller town not too far from there.

~stay sweet, and k.i.t.~
posted by shinyshiny at 6:35 PM on September 27, 2009


So in in High School I was a Red Wings fan. Which is great, if you live in or near Detroit. Alas, I was in Blues territory. At this time, Steve Yzerman was the captain of the team. So one of my 'friends' wrote in HUGE LETTERS ACROSS THE WHOLE INSIDE COVER OF THE YEARBOOK :

EISENHOWER SUKS

I just shook my head and sighed.
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 6:43 PM on September 27, 2009


squasha - that's what Facebook is for!

At my HS graduation, my "school counselor"-type tracked me down to sign my yearbook, "porpoise, sometimes it's detrimental to think so much. Quit it."
posted by porpoise at 6:48 PM on September 27, 2009 [1 favorite]


I
I AM
I AM WRITING
I AM WRITING THIS
I AM WRITING THIS TO
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE UP
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE UP ALL
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE UP ALL THE
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE UP ALL THE SPACE
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE UP ALL THE SPACE ON
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE UP ALL THE SPACE ON THIS
I AM WRITING THIS TO TAKE UP ALL THE SPACE ON THIS PAGE

h.a.g.s. lol <3 lol
posted by casarkos at 7:02 PM on September 27, 2009


I wrote the chorus to "These Important Years" in everyone's yearbook. It was kind of awesome. Especially since I was the freak who didn't really say much of anything and just kind of blended in.
posted by pxe2000 at 7:07 PM on September 27, 2009 [2 favorites]


Don't forget all the variations on "signing your crack"
posted by JoeGoblin at 7:10 PM on September 27, 2009 [2 favorites]


nobody signed my yearbook
posted by bitteroldman at 7:17 PM on September 27, 2009 [2 favorites]


As an orientation leader at a large state school, I was granted access to a whole heap of yearbooks dating back many decades. I found the earliest one in the collection - it was from 1911. Most of the signatures were illegible, however one young scalawag had written, "Put up your duggers, you lowlander!" From then on it became my college friends' favored drunken insult.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 7:45 PM on September 27, 2009 [15 favorites]


I grew up in the UK, and until the recent American-ising of my school, we didn't have yearbooks, we all signed each other's shirts (wouldn't be needing them anymore!) and had a little book for people to write yearbook-y type things in. Most people in my year disliked me (I was a weirdo and just as much of an asshole as any other 11-15 year old), and this blog is making me wish I had it to hand to flick through and submit any of the gems. The highlight of course, is getting my long term crush to write in it too. If only he weren't my English teacher! *sigh* So dreamy.
posted by saturnine at 7:54 PM on September 27, 2009


I'm writing this in your crack.
L.Y.L.A.S.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 8:18 PM on September 27, 2009 [3 favorites]


Heh! I just remembered all those "I'm signing your crack" quips!
posted by Burhanistan at 8:21 PM on September 27, 2009


I would be paralyzed with fear when someone handed me their yearbook to sign. This is, like, for posterity man. Whatever I write here will be read for generations to come. When you're dead (and I'm not) your great grandchildren will crack open your yearbook and search for the words of wisdom I imparted to you.

So that's it? You're giving me 30 seconds to come up with something?

Writer's block. I could never think of a damn thing to write.

So that's why I always copied, verbatim, something from the opposite page, then I signed my name to it. I figured years from now forensic science wouldn't be able to tell who wrote what first, so I had a 50/50 chance in history.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 8:27 PM on September 27, 2009 [3 favorites]


I don't have many yearbook signatures but I was pressured to sign a bunch of yearbooks because people would be pimping out their signature pages all over the school. So it would be like "Hey, $PERSON_IN_FRONT_OF_ME, sign my yearbook!". I ended up writing a lot of "have a zany and unpredictable next couple of minutes" and "hurf durf"s.
posted by tehloki at 8:32 PM on September 27, 2009


¿uʍop ǝpısdn ʞooqɹɐǝʎ ɹnoʎ uƃıs oɥʍ ǝןdoǝd ǝʇɐɥ noʎ ʇ,uop 'ǝnןq ǝɹɐ sʇǝןoıʌ 'pǝɹ ǝɹɐ sǝsoɹ
posted by katillathehun at 8:37 PM on September 27, 2009


This post is 2 cool 2 B 4got10! (The only thing more odious than that yearbook signature was the predictable chorus of 'see you next year's from guffawing, wise-ass middle schoolers going home for Christmas break.. 'cause the break was only like a week or so.. I always thought that was stupid..)
posted by Mael Oui at 9:10 PM on September 27, 2009


I don't think I would submit anything as long as the exact school and year are named. That just makes it too easy to track down the sources—I agree with riki tiki. I would like this a lot more if only, say, the state and the year were given.
posted by zadermatermorts at 10:11 PM on September 27, 2009


May your life be like toilet paper...long and useful!
posted by jefficator at 10:18 PM on September 27, 2009


14. I'm scared stiff at the idea of life after high school and I really really really really need you to double super promise to stay friends with me forever and ever and ever because I don't think I can make it out there alone I want to stay here it's safe can I sleep in your car?
posted by rokusan at 10:37 PM on September 27, 2009


Not a signature story, but in our yearbook the seniors got to put a nickname and a brief quote under their pictures. Our senior class included three siblings, a boy and two girls, who listed their nicknames as "Or", "Gaz", and "m", respectively. I noticed it for the first time just before my 10th HS reunion, and thinking about it still makes me smile.

I checked it again before posting to make sure I got it right, and noticed one guy on a preceding page had given his nickname as "Floyd T. Zeppelin". Man, if I ever feel the need for another sockpuppet account, I am totally going to be Floyd T. Zeppelin. Hell, I may even dress up as Floyd T. Zeppelin for Halloween. Like "Max Power," Floyd T. Zeppelin is a name that's going to take you places. And no, I was never cool enough to be Floyd T. Zeppelin while actually in high school.
posted by mosk at 11:07 PM on September 27, 2009 [1 favorite]


A couple of weeks before graduation I got very drunk, puked all over a subway station, got taken in by the police and ended up at Maria Addiction Centre to sleep it all off.

Now, most swedish schools don't have Yearbooks, but we do leave messages in each others caps. And since my drunkeness was still fresh in people's minds, I got a lot of strange sentences in mine. My favourite is "Maria Pol, Maria Pol, där ska du bo, din dumma säl" which translates into "Maria Addiction Centre, Maria Addiction Centre, there you shall live, you stupid seal".
posted by soundofsuburbia at 2:27 AM on September 28, 2009 [2 favorites]


This reads like that People of Wal-Mart site.

This part repeated for emphasis.
posted by fixedgear at 5:11 AM on September 28, 2009


This reads like that People of Wal-Mart site.

That's silly. This isn't a set of pictures of some obese mullet wearers that were snapped surreptitiously. It's more in line with "kids say the darndest things" than "look at these middle America freaks". Jeez.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:38 AM on September 28, 2009


I had broken up with my boyfriend before the end of our Senior year but I still wanted him to sign my book, because I think we both had a lot of unresolved feelings about each other. He wrote a long, heart-felt message about how he would always remember me because I was the first girl he had ever had sex with. When my 14 year old daughter asked to see my yearbook, I had some misgivings but in the end I prepped her by telling her about our relationship. He wasn't my first, but 35 years later I am married to someone who looks a lot like him-- right down to the unruly mop of black, curly hair.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:48 AM on September 28, 2009


Eponysterical.
posted by haveanicesummer at 8:04 AM on September 28, 2009 [2 favorites]


Also my bestever yearbook signature was this in 7th grade, this guy who subsequently dropped out a year or two later and I've since heard he was in jail for heroin dealing. He wrote--

Stay blond. Stay short. Stay cool. Stay in school.
posted by haveanicesummer at 8:05 AM on September 28, 2009


Drugs are good
sex is great
we are the class
of 88!

Grab a bud
grab a heiney
we are the class
of 1990!

I can't remember any others.
posted by dirtdirt at 8:41 AM on September 28, 2009



*remembers the many instances of "Have a nice summer" in his yearbook, then sighs*
posted by adipocere



Would you call yourself a very *visible* person, adipocere?
posted by The Whelk at 8:41 AM on September 28, 2009


A few years ago I pulled my old yearbooks off the shelf to take a stroll through memory lane... almost everything people wrote in my yearbooks were in-jokes I no longer understood and references to things I have now forgotten.

Time keeps on ticking, ticking, ticking... into the future (doot doot doo)
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 8:44 AM on September 28, 2009


Nobody signed my yearbook, either, except for my unsettlingly glittery-eyed girlfriend. She drew out "I Love You!" next to my photo. Later, she cut her wrists & took up with one of my best friends, making me a character in a pop song.
posted by Forrest Greene at 9:21 AM on September 28, 2009


I just got back from my 30th HS reunion, so the books came down and were reviewed. My school was really small so we actually knew each other and when someone wrote something in your book, it was actually decently thought out.

Also, 30 years ago, if you were in HS you could actually read and write.

The stuff on that site is just sad and pathetic.

I'd rather be old and uncool, with awesome memories of high school, than young and stupid and one of 1200 in a graduating class.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 10:52 AM on September 28, 2009


This reads like that People of Wal-Mart site.

Only if you were never a kid yourself. These signatures are something we all remember from our own kidhood. The Wal-Mart blog exists purely for the blogger to point fingers at people he/she thinks are beneath him/her.
posted by katillathehun at 10:58 AM on September 28, 2009


11. I'm sorry I did you and still don't know who you are.
posted by futureisunwritten at 11:40 AM on September 28, 2009


People asked me to draw in their yearbook rather than sign it. People who didn't know me very well said I could draw anything I wanted.

So many furiously masturbating monkeys where inscribed into immortality that day let me tell you.
posted by The Whelk at 11:43 AM on September 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


I went to a small high school, and knew most of my class, and had a few very good friends. Some of my favorite inscriptions really read more like letters, and a few even showed a great amount of foresight into how things would change when we all graduated; none of the BEST FRIENDS 4-EVA! delusions. This makes me want to go digging for those yearbooks.
posted by craven_morhead at 1:56 PM on September 28, 2009


I can't tell if I'm sick of websites that are thinly disguised pitches for a book deal, or if I'm sick I haven't thought of one yet.
posted by josher71 at 6:43 PM on September 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


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