It's graduation time again. Last year, I penned a message to the outgoing class of 2008, a message you almost certainly forgot because there was a picture of Cassandra Lynn sitting at the top of the page. And seeing a photo of Cassandra Lynn is like getting a defibrillator to your penis. So we'd best make this a yearly ritual for you new seniors out there, just to keep things fresh in your little ADD-addled brains.
This is the time of year when every university out there spends a great deal of energy flying in celebrities to give grad speeches. And do you know WHY colleges do this? It isn't because these people they get are actually all that inspiring. No, the reason that Oprah Winfey, for example, was hired to speak at this year's Duke graduation was specifically so that the school's student body could brag to other non-Duke people that they had some famous asshole talk at their graduation. "Who spoke at your Brandeis graduation, Tiffany? Oh, congressman Edolphus Towns? That's nice. (stifles chuckle) BUT WE HAD A WOMAN SPEAK TO US BY THE NAME OF OPRAH. PERHAPS YOU'VE HEARD OF HER. SHE IS MY CLOSEST BLACK FRIEND."
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?
YOU MAKE ME SICK.
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. No more ripe teenage pussy. That's all over now. YOU ARE FUCKED. Your days will now consist of searching for a job in a marketplace where no available job of any sort fucking exists. Your commencement speaker will probably tell you your class "faces enormous challenges," or some bullshit euphemism like that. This is a lie. A challenge is something you can overcome. You, on the other hand, are completely, unavoidably fucked. You're not going to cure cancer. You're not going to stop wars. You're not going to save the planet. If you're lucky, you may stumble upon a $2 coupon for Honey Nut Cheerios one day. That will be about it.
Otherwise, you are entering a world that is running out of money, a world that will slowly choke itself to death unless it somehow stumbles upon a miraculously clean, cheap energy source that has yet to be invented and almost certainly never will be. Ten years from now, your degree will be 1/100th as useful as a fucking life vest. So wipe that nauseating smile off your faces and heed now this glimpse into your very near future…
95% of your future happiness will come from finding a good parking spot. You know that annoying Joni Mitchell song where she bitches and moans, "They paved paradise, put up a parking lot. OOOOOH BOP BOP BOP!" Suck it, you hairy-bushed twat. If it were up to me, there would be a 17-level parking garage on every other block in this fucking country. I swear to fucking God, I spend the majority of my time every weekend stalking outgoing Trader Joe's customers in my Honda, watching them walk to their cars, then having them wave me off because they weren't actually getting out. HEY COCKTEASE, GIVE ME A FUCKING HEADS UP.
I promise you, when you reach my age, not only will you exult at finding a great parking spot, but you'll immediately tell the first person you see about having secured it. "Yeah, I got a GREAT spot! I didn't even have to wait! Usually, that lot is a NIGHTMARE. God, I feel fucking good!"
The greatest indicator of your future success in the business world will be your ability to lie. Your degree is worthless. The only thing that will determine your chances of getting ahead is a surefire way to convince your boss you weren't cc'ed on some email that told you to do something you never bothered to fucking do.
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.
The day you become old is the day you find yourself looking at a paint swatch book. Holy shit, that shade of blue is only .000001 degrees away from that shade of blue! You practically have to view them at the atomic level to know the fucking difference! How the fuck am I supposed to choose? Fun fact: any paint color you choose will end up looking like a radically different color once applied to your walls. Why? Because the people at Sherwin-Williams are pricks, that's why.
You will begin caring about stupid shit in the front section of the newspaper. I used to read USA Today in college. I would read only two sections: Red and Purple. The green section was for boring assholes, and the front section was about a bunch of stupid political bullshit. I never cared about politics or world affairs when I was younger. College kids who care about politics are fucking douches. But suddenly, annoyingly serious shit like health care actually started to matter to me. And I don't like it one bit. I read an article in The Atlantic a while back. Voluntarily. I can't begin to tell you how annoyed I was at myself for this.
Don't get married just because there's a run on weddings. Happens to every group of friends, particularly women friends. Someone gets married off in your little group, then a bunch of your friends do likewise. It's like a run on wide receivers in the late second round of your fantasy draft. Do not get swept up in this. I had the good fortune of marrying someone I like, and it's what keeps me sane every day. But Lord knows I've seen a fuckload of people out there get married just because it everyone else was doing it and they got all swept up in the idea of being married. There isn't a surer way to fuck yourself for life than by doing this.
The reason so many people get divorced now is because they don't take the time to figure out if they actually enjoy the company of the person they're fucking. Marriage can make life infinitely better, provided the person you choose to marry is as dedicated to your happiness as you are to theirs. But if it's anything less than that, NEVER GET MARRIED. EVER. Or else your life will be a giant fucking rut. Guaranteed.
Weekends will stop being fun. During weekdays, you get to sit at a desk and look at Keyboard Cat videos.
During the weekend, you get to pull weeds, install smoke detectors, and feed screaming children. Guess which part of the week is more enjoyable? HAPPY MONDAY, FUCKO.
Rent. If you rent, you can call someone to fix shit if it breaks. FOR FREE. Is that worth not ending your life owning some old house your kid is just going to sell for pot money anyway? Fuck and yes.
You will get dumber every day from now on. You're done learning. Time to start forgetting shit! The other weekend I was sitting in the parking lot shuttle bus at the Baltimore airport, on my way to get my car after a flight, only to realize I had left my car keys at my parents' house, which was now 300 miles away. I then bit down on my own finger until I had broken the skin. I am retarded, and I am only getting worse. IT'LL HAPPEN TO YOU.
Going out will stop being appealing to you. What? I have to put on pants? And pay $5 for a drink when I have 30 beers in the fridge? And talk to people? FUCK. THAT.
There is no point in raising your kids well, because other people's retard kids will end up ruining them anyway. You can teach your kid good manners. You can feed them nothing but organic dairy products milked from an angel's tit. You can read your kid 500 Sandra Boynton books every night. I promise you, none of it will matter. Because once your kid goes to school, some spoiled sack of shit kid with horrible parents will teach your kid the word "pussyfart," get them hooked on straight Whoppers, and immediately undo every good thing you did. Trust me. Other people can't parent for JACK SHIT.
If you have more than three kids, you are an asshole. What the fuck are you trying to prove with more than three kids? Kids siphon up precious food and water, produce oceans of shit-ridden waste, and give American parents large tax breaks most of them really don't deserve. If you have more than three kids, and really even two, you deserve to have your have your uterus filled with sand.
You will find yourself, at times, tired of drinking. But you will continue drinking anyway. Beats the alternative, which is NOT drinking.
You will begin mailing in EVERYTHING. At some point, you will become so inundated with shit to do, that you will do ALL of it half-assed, because that's really the only way it'll all get done. Look at this column. It's nothing but a bunch of fucking bullet points. Really, I'd like to put more effort into everything I do. But I've got my country's 500th anniversary to plan, my wedding to arrange, my wife to murder, and Gilder to frame for it. I'm swamped!
Never put sauce on top of pasta. You're a grownup now. Make (or heat) the sauce in a separate pan, add a bit of the pasta water to it, drain the pasta a minute early, and then finish cooking the pasta in the sauce. That's how they make it taste good in restaurants. Do it and your date will put out.
The key to a decent existence is owning a good bed. Most of your future life will be consumed with addressing reams and reams of tedious bullshit. You'll have to work. You'll have to run errands. You'll have to clean shit and pick shit up. Your only salvation is that fucking bed at the end of the day. So make sure it kicks ass in every conceivable way. Get it all: the pillowtop mattress, the egg crate, the featherbed underneath, the nice comforter on top… ALL THAT SHIT. No day is ever that horrible if you have a sultan's rest awaiting you. You'll still wake up at 6AM involuntarily. But at least you'll still be nice and cozy when you do.
Got all that, graduates? Feel ready to go out and change the world now? No? Good. Because the world changes on its own terms, without your fucking input, thank you very much. The only thing you can do is adjust. Remember: the world has been around a whole lot longer than you have, and it has a limitless arsenal of ways to DESTROY YOUR FUCKING SHIT. So don't go out there thinking your going to impact it in any kind of meaningful way. You'll be here a little longer, then you'll die, then shit'll move on without you. Don't like it, Pollyanna? Tough fucking shit.
Look on the bright side. At least when you die, you'll finally be able to sleep in again. Until then, here's the boob scene from "Porky's Revenge" to numb your soul.
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