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May 17, 2009

Happy F*cking Graduation Day, Young People

Since Sir Charles kick-started the whole bitterness theme last night, I thought I'd keep the bile going by sharing this wonderful rant, by Drew Magary of Deadspin, with all of you, our lovely readers.

(Has it really been, uh, twenty-eight years since I stayed up all night party-hopping across Gainesville, crawled home to my apartment at dawn, downed a quart of sludge-thick coffee, plunked the same silly tasseled hat on my head--just as they're doing this month at campuses around the nation--and wrapped my already-overheated body in the same heavy robe?

Yes...yes, I suppose it has.

And from what I'm seeing in the news, grads today will have just as much futile fun trying to parlay said degrees into paying careers: thanks to the flaccid economic conditions that characterized the early 1980's, we fresh-faced, newly-degreed journalismers considered ourselves lucky to land the odd bar-tending or cocktailing job, supplementing as we could with hilariously cheesy modeling stints for used car lots or cafeteria chains while waiting to hear back from one of the fourteen airlines to which we'd sent in applications for a flight attendant position. Good times!)

But Drew says it all so much better:

That's the reason there are celebrity graduation speakers: to boost the already healthy egos of the graduating class. It's strictly for name-dropping value. Oooh, you guys are so special, Fed Chairman Ben Barnanke wanted to give you a pep talk! This is bullshit. College grads don't deserve to be feted by celebrities, or honored, or lifted up with inspiring words. They deserve to be BROUGHT THE FUCK DOWN BY THE CRUSHING WEIGHT OF REAL LIFE'S BITTER DISAPPOINTMENTS. They deserve a stern lecture from someone like me, who is NOT famous, NOT inspiring, and NOT attractive to look at.

I bet you grads had one hell of a spring, didn't you? Oh, I bet you spent your whole spring taking a miniscule courseload, lounging on blankets outside on the quad, fucking each other, drinking your gay little Twisted Teas... I bet you even smoked pot on Wednesday morning, just for the hell of it. I bet you just had the time of your fucking lives the past four years, didn't you?


Guess what, fuckos? Party's over. You're out of college now, and your parents are now too poor to nurse you through grad school. No more fantasy life for you. No more ice luges. No more intellectual discourse. [...]

At some point, you will not be able to sleep in past 8 or 9AM, and this will piss you off.
I used to be cool. I used to be able to sleep until noon no problem. I SPAT RIGHT IN MORNING'S FUCKING EYE. No waking up at dawn for me. Waking up early is crazy gay. Am I right?

Except then I got a job, so I had to wake up early every day. Then, my body got used to waking up early every day, so it just woke the fuck right up at the same time on weekends, too. "But Body," I said to my big fat body, "There's nothing to fucking do, and I wanna sleep more." But my body wouldn't have it. Then I got married. Then I had kids. And holy shit, do kids wake up early. Not only does my kid come storming into the room at 6AM, but she screams WAKE UP at the top of her lungs every damn time. Having a kid is just like having a really mean spinning instructor. They give no fucking quarter. They're like tiny little Hitlers.

Now, even if there are no kids around, I wake up at 7AM at the latest. This should be good for me, I suppose. I get to run out and experience the full day, or something. But I don't feel that way. I feel like a complete asshat for getting up that early. I feel lamer than shit. Which is completely irrational. Then again, most anything I think or do now is beyond explanation. So rest up, kids. Because soon you'll be chewing Ambien like they're fucking Bubbalicious.

Seriously, read the whole thing.

(H/T Cajun Boy in the City)


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That is without a fucking doubt one of the funniest things I have ever read.

Toast, because it's so utterly true, yes?! I just read it to Robert. We agree that this is probably why our tenth-grader seems intent on remaining a tenth-grader until the end of time.

Ha Ha! I loved that.

I am still nostalgic for all of the unmitigated fuck off time that characterized college life.

And I remember graduation vividly -- still drunk from the night before, a lovely departmental ceremony indoors and then the mass ceremony in 49 degree weather in a light but persistent rain. Ah spring in Massachusetts. (I left three months later and never returned.)

I just got back from a law school graduation. It's different though. Those kids have already begun the important process of having the life sucked out of them -- in fact, law school is even more soul crushing than working. I wasn't jealous of any of them.

about seven or eight years into the work routine, i looked up in june and realized i had not been bummed out that i had no spring break. i still wanted one when i thought of it, but that was the first year i had not thought of it all the time. now, i am thoroughly beaten down, but still live for the next vacation.

I still sleep in, but I may very well pay in the future when I have no children to rely upon for support when I am elderly. I have been aware of that for decades now.

Nonetheless, I long ago decided I did not think I had what it took to be a decent parent, and I am still of that opinion. I make a very decent uncle, but I still firmly believe I would make a truly crappy dad.

Sir C., I graduated from Penn State in May, 1981, and believe I was either in the last, or next to last graduation ceremony of the entire class in one place at one time (Beaver Stadium). The weather was glorious (a bit warm, even).

I still paid. The previous winter Dr. Paul Berg won a Nobel Prize for his ground-breaking work in genetics (work that led to DNA replication, IIRC). He got his BS degree at Penn State, and is still the only Nobel laureate to have any association of any kind with Penn State.

His address to us?

A 45 minute snore on the importance of funding basic research.....................................

(I heartily agree with that importance, but honestly!)

Meanwhile, one of my buddies from high school got to listen to Isaac Asimov when he graduate that same year from Gettysburg College!


You know what? I can't even remember who spoke at our graduation.

Yes, I was that hungover. I only went to please the family, really; there are a handful of photographs, somewhere, and the only close-up reveals a pair of dark circles that still impress the hell out of me--I mean, I didn't even have any babies yet, and look at those dark circles.

I did talk to Senator Bob Graham for a long while at one of the Florida Blue Key "smokers", way back in the day. Years later, I ran into him in a traffic jam outside Tampa Stadium, just before a Bucs game. He got out of his car and shook hands with people and chatted, just to pass the time until cars began moving. I still love the guy; he's one of the rare good ones, I think.

oddjob, Isaac Asimov? Wow. I'd be pissed, too. *sigh*

I don't doubt that there were more than a few fellow graduates getting their BS/BA degrees who were likewise more than a bit hungover! Being a proper fundy at the time I was most certainly not one of them, but even so, it's not like I was unaware of the generally rowdy nature of much of the graduating class (thousands of them, all at the same time).

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