Dear soon-to-be college graduates:

Thank you for selecting me as your commencement speaker this year once you found out that you couldn’t get Miley Cyrus.

I know you have asked me here because you believed I could offer all of you some pertinent advice about life, since I have been living for some time.

I have, in fact, been around since there were land lines. And carbon paper. So, yes, I have learned some lessons from all these years — particularly from 1976 and 1993, not so much from 1981 — that I would like to impart:

• Never use the word impart. No one really knows if it’s a real word and if you say it more than three times in a row, very quickly, it sounds like absolute gibberish. Actually, even saying it one time in a row isn’t that good.

• Don’t text while eating nachos.

• Speak softly and carry a big stick. It’s particularly useful if you are batting cleanup and the bases are loaded.

• When you’re changing your passwords on your online accounts, write them down somewhere for God’s sake. If you don’t, like some people I could mention, you’ll never remember that your Amazon password was the first letters of all the words in the chorus of “With a Little Help From My Friends,” plus the !, the #, the * and the %. And a couple of capital letters thrown in there.

• To thine own self be true, even if you don’t know what thine means.

• Find your own path, but make sure it has parking nearby.

• Follow your dreams, although that doesn’t mean that in the decades to come you should be buying pants with a 29-inch waist just because you used to have a 29-inch waist.

• Seize the opportunity, but make sure to pay for it first before you leave the store.

• Alternatively, if you are just a little pompous, you can also carpe diem, as long as you have carefully wrapped the diems and remember to defrost them before popping into the microwave.

• Never, ever refer to your followers on Twitter as “tweepl.”

• When living at home with your parents before finding a job and beginning your career, try not to make fun of them for always reading obituaries and asking you how to upload photos or what snapchat is.

• Never send a text to someone sitting right next to you.

• If you can’t find a job after graduation, don’t hesitate to take an unpaid internship. It’s a great idea unless you actually have to pay for something, like food.

• Remember that tattoos are forever and you may have to explain yours to your own children.

• Never use the salutation “dude” to anyone old enough to remember land lines or carbon paper.

• Finally, always remember that actions speak louder than birds, unless you have a parrot.

 

 

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