Okay Class of 2011, listen up. It is time for you to seize the day. Carpe diem like there is no mañana.
Here are some helpful tips to help you get through your Big Day.
Even if your class size is six, these graduation ceremonies tend to run a little long. You are going to need some things to talk about amongst your tassel-wearing brothers and sisters. Courtesy of ITB, here are three fun facts you can use as Graduation Ceremony conversation fodder:
Fun Fact #1: That song that you will be humming until July is “March Number One of Sir Edward Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance Military Marches, Op.39.” It is on the “Elgar! Live!” CD, available for download on ITunes.
Fun Fact #2: Shakespeare (William to you, ‘Billy’ to me) popularized the phrase “Pomp and Circumstance” in ‘Othello’. I know I am not telling you anything new when I point out it is in Act III, scene iii – yes, the very same scene where Bluto fires up Delta House by asking “Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?”
Fun Fact #3: The root of “Pomp” is the Latin “pompa” meaning “procession”. “Circumstance” origins are unknown, but scholars agree its original meaning has something to do with “hiding the flask.”
Okay, you got some talking points. Next, you 2011 grads need to take possession of a song.
You can give this a lot of thought, or just go with the last song you hear in the car on the ride over to the ceremony. Pray it is not Bruno Mars’ “The Lazy Song”.
My suggestion? 10 million teenage girls cannot be wrong – go with “For Good” from the greatest musical of all time, “Wicked’. Regardless of what you choose, lose yourself in the moment. (Yes, that was some subliminal Eminem for your consideration.) Is the ‘He is We’ hit “Happily Ever After” too obvious? I mean, come on, we all do have a story to tell.
And you, my grad, you own this book. You are the author of this moment.
Okay, you got something to talk about and you got a song. Now listen:
Today is whatever you need it to be. Been something less than your best lately? So what? Hit the reset button, not yourself. There is never any shame in hitting the reset button. It is why we have dawns after dusk. Exit night, enter light.
Bottom line cliché: Today is really more about tomorrow than yesterday. Feel a meaningful quote coming on?
Tim Sheehy – the president of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce and almost never quoted – said this: “The future is not someplace we will end up. It is the place we have a responsibility to create.” Okay, so Sheehy is no Pink, but pretty good stuff, right?
This responsibility of creating a bright future is nothing to sneeze at – but if you do, cover your mouth like a vampire. The world, as you have no doubt noticed, is having some rough times. This has been going on since the earth’s pre-human days. Ask any Neanderthal you happen to bump into. Rough times come with the territory.
Here is what you do… Fight the good fight. Together. A team of 5 can accomplish 100 times more than the output of 5 individuals. A team of 53 can win the Super Bowl, unless they are the Bears.
Form strong bonds. You need each other. We need all of you.
One last thing, you gang of Grads: Enjoy the day, enjoy your life. Get yourself to a party. Grab a pizza at Ricardos. Read Inside the Bubble… often.
Life was meant to be enjoyed. It is that simple.