I’ve spent weeks trying to think of what it is I’d like to share with you on this special morning… what words of wisdom I could possibly impart, what bits of knowledge I have obtained during these past five years that I could share. And after careful deliberation and consideration, I came to the conclusion that I have absolutely nothing to say. I’ve asked several people, "So, like, if you were listening to a speech, and, like, you wanted to enjoy it… what would you want to hear?" And these several people all had the same reply, "Don’t be boring." So, that was a really big help.
I refuse to start out with some sort of typical, "My fellow graduates…" introduction, and I’ll be gosh-darned if I start with a quote, like, "As Shakespeare once said…".. Basically, I realized that I’m walking away with a degree in Physics, and I cannot compose a simple graduation speech. Someone needs to explain to me how I can complete five years of college and leave here incapable of delivering a simple speech. I’m a little bitter.
The problem is that I’m not sure whether the lessons I’ve learned are the types of things you talk about in a speech like this. Most of the graduation speeches I’ve heard seem to be along the lines of, "You are the future! You are the promise of tomorrow! Dream and you will succeed!" And that’s really great; those are nice things to hear. But I can honestly say that I have never reached a difficult moment in my life and then thought, "I didn’t know what to do, but then I remembered something my graduation speaker once said, and everything fell into place!" So, I’m not here to give advice, and I’m not here to impart words of wisdom, and I’m not here to inspire you to succeed. I would just like to wish you all the good and bad luck in the world.
Good people, well-meaning people, will say, "Congratulations. We wish you success and happiness." And I wish for that as well. I wish for the fun and challenging job with a fair and decent boss, the nice home with coordinated furniture, a spacious closet with plenty of shoes inside. I hope for a car that works, and a dog, maybe named Roger, that rides in the passenger seat and sticks his head out the window. I hope for...