Friday, May 22, 2009

Advice for new graduates...

I'm going to be the commencement speaker at my high school alma mater, Duluth Denfeld High School, on June 4th. I've been pondering what I'll say in that 10 minute speech. Looking back at my own graduation from that very high school, I wince at how I spent that evening. If you read my book, Cooler Near the Lake, you have my full, deplorable confession. While my parents–with pride in their hearts–entertained a family celebration at my home that evening, I greeted everyone briefly and headed out to the dump with some of my friends to (please remember I was only 17) spend the evening shooting rats. YIKES! Well...I'm not going to tell the graduates that. But... I do want to give them some hope for their future in the midst of this very dour time in our nation and our world. I'm throwing this out to you.... what advice would you give the class of 2009? 

Send along your comments here and let's pool our thoughts.


Anonymous said...

Hi Jim

I feel the most important thing, or idea, you could convey is to be honest. There are a lot of meanings and connotations to that word. I prefer the simple, don't lie. Those two words, it seems to me, cover all the bases. It is the hardest thing a person will ever do and it is impossible to do. To be sure being honest, or at least tying to be, will cause problems – big problems – in a persons life. But I believe honesty makes a person think before they act. There is nothing wrong with a bit of deliberation before opening that pie hole.

Erick H

Jim Heffernan said...

Yes, Erick...Couldn't agree more. As the poet said, "Truth is beauty and beauty is truth, and that is all you need to know." (Rough transcription from memory.)

Always enjoy hearing from you.