So Sarcasmo’s graduation was a success. We asked him if he knew the salutatorian. Nope. We asked him if he knew the valedictorian. Nope. But he sure knew the kid who dropped trou and ran across the stage.
Cudos to the school and the auditorium for getting their seventh graduation in and finished in less than 1.5 hours. Very nicely done.
The speaker, however, now that was a different story. It was the graduation-y equivalent of an old guy standing on his porch and yelling, “Hey, you kids, get offa my lawn!”
Seriously, I’m surprised this dude knew what year it was. Most of his talk consisted on encouraging the graduating seniors to abandon their twitters and their facebooks and phones and such and start learning how to handwrite a letter. “Because nothing beats a handwritten letter.”
Basically, what he wanted was for the kids to abandon the wonders of modern technology and go back to the way things were when he graduated all those eons ago. It was a loud, long call to forego the future and embrace what happened to work in the past.
It was, to put it bluntly, the exact opposite of what a high-school graduation speech should be.
In my opinion, high-school graduates and college graduates should be encouraged to embrace the future, to find not what works now or what worked in the past, but what will work in the future. Their lives stretch out before them and they will see changes undreamed of by people of our generation or the previous generation. That is fact.
Trying to cling to the past, encouraging those who will come after you to cling to outmoded expressions of courtesy or personal interaction is just, well, horrible. Lives change. Times change. People should change as well.
Embrace the future. Fight to claim it for your own. Grab on to what’s coming, make it your own and then pass it back to the people who come after you.
And always know the kid who drops trou and runs across the stage.