What happened to the kids in your HS after graduation who were 'too cool for school'?

Since it’s almost the end of High School for many kids in the West, I thought of starting this thread.

When I mean popular kids, I don’t define ‘popular’ as the typical jocks or hot nerdy girls as some might believe that everyone knew. I mean popularity in terms of infamy due to very bad behaviour or personality. The guy who was the go-to cocaine dealer for kids who wanted a high and never took academics, teachers, or life seriously. Also it can be the attractive bullies that got all the girls.

My younger friend who is about to graduate has an unofficial list in his school where they envision ‘will be the most likely to…’.

Is the common trope of the bullies end up working for the nerds really true in your experience or does like continue to be unfair and the popular kids end up in good if not a better position than they were in HS while the ‘loser’ kids end up with self esteem issues and worse than they were in High School?

Some of them ended up dead, mostly from alcohol or drug abuse. A few did time. The majority of them just ended up working at blue collar jobs.

Bit of an excluded middle there, isn’t there? I mean, my school had plenty of kids who were “wild”, popular kids with poor academic performance and possible authority issues, yet who weren’t bullies or drug dealers. Lots of them had bands, and most of them were pretty decent once you got to know them.

Anyway, I haven’t kept track of them, because they weren’t really my crowd and anyway, I haven’t kept in touch with anyone from high school, but I recently happened to check up on my class’s most popular “bad boy”, and I found basically what I expected: military service in special forces (he was an avowed martial artist and in excellent physical shape), degree from minor college, and now he’s a businessman of some sort who travels to China a lot. So, good for him. He would make fun of me from time to time, and I didn’t like all of his friends, but I always likes him anyway.

I became a successful computer programmer.

The problem is… you can’t predict a whole person’s life from a couple of years in HS because it all depends on what they chose to do after that.

I knew a guy in high school that was a big bully and way too cool for anything.

Three years later I was at a gigantic mall one late night, and there he was, pushing a broom. I could tell he wasn’t thrilled to see me.

I haven’t kept up with anyone I went to high school with.

Kids with actively "very bad behavior " generally met bad ends unless it was due to drug use or emotional issues they somehow managed to turn around. People who are walking chaos generators are only attractive to a point.

Some kids who were just disengaged did find success after HS and blossomed in college or in some trade they had a passion for, but if you are a borderline sociopathic asshole that doesn’t usually really get better.

Pretty much this with some notable exceptions. One surprised us all by going on to become a career State Trooper with a rather good record of arrests and promotions. We figured his long and distinguished JD record gave him insights and knowledge the average cop never had.

Meh, I turned out okay

We weren’t all on a downhill path, sometimes we were just bored. And we weren’t all thugs either.

I know two of them who became ministers. More power to them, although that’s two churches I won’t be donating to.

This. I actually liked some of those kids better but really don’t care about anyone from that time. I moved away so I didn’t keep up with local news.

Random thought: My bro got cocaine from the rich kids not the “bad boys”. I don’t know who they bought it from.

Most of the ‘cool ones’ wound up doing really mundane crap. A few have broken out - a diplomat, a couple real scientists, a couple notably successful small businessmen, a couple state-level politicians, and one US Representative.

I went to a private high school. Kids who were “too cool for school” mostly wouldn’t have been there in the first place.

I have absolutely no idea what happened to anyone I went to high school with. I presume most of them, even the druggies and slackers, did just fine, since I graduated from high school in one of the wealthiest communities in the US.

I was surprised when I read this that the same is true for me. I have not heard one thing about anyone I went to high school since the day I left. (with the exception of my former girlfriend, I heard she became a teacher in Delaware) Nothing. I don’t know who is alive, dead, successful, or a complete failure.

that covers a wide range, some of them became addicts and died very young, some of them got their shit together and went back to school. The majority that I know ended up like me working at blue collar jobs and making a decent living but not as good as they should have done.

I spoke to a couple of fellow students a couple of times over the next 2-3 years after school and that was the end of it. I know one guy is dead, one girl went missing. Some went off to college, a few into the military, a few surely into a life of crime, but there was just a dispersal. I realize now we were only friends because we were sitting together in the Green Room waiting to appear on the Rest of Your Life show.

What do you mean exactly?

I’m really interested in this because I always heard from my crazy father and a few other people that ‘you’ll end up poor and homeless if you do shit in high school or drop out’, but from what I’m reading this doesn’t seem to be the case.

I wonder how many stories are there of kids actually becoming homeless after failing high school. I suppose that was scaremongering but then I do wonder again why some teachers were so strict giving detentions when you didn’t learn all your work. Getting bad grades doesn’t seem to hinder your life too much apparently.

Might ask some ‘tiger’ moms why they push their kids so much even when living in the West.